Kiawah Island, South Carolina
A massive live oak near the middle of the property serves as the centerpiece of the design of this house. This tree forms a wide canopy over the entrance courtyard. The courtyard's floor - a slightly raised wood deck - hovers over the tree's roots. This courtyard is accented by an exterior pergola at the ground level, and is viewed from above by a wood-beamed gallery and bridge. A wide, curved stair leads from the courtyard to the main entrance at the north wing.
Built on a high masonry basement, the house is composed of narrow wings running to the north, south, east, and west of the courtyard. The great room is shielded from the street by the guest wing on the property's south side; guests reach the wing by a covered bridge crossing the courtyard. The west wing houses the master bedroom retreat, with a stair leading to a hidden study on the second floor. The east wing contains the kitchen, with a second stair leading to the painting studio above. Wide decks and stairs lead down to the water's edge.