Southampton Contemporary

Our clients, the interior designer Kelly Behun and her husband, came to us in 2002 after seeing a waterfront house we had designed in Bridgehampton, New York. They admired the home’s transparency and lightness, and wanted to replicate these effects on their spectacular five-acre oceanfront site in Southampton Village. They envisioned a similarly transparent house, but with a brighter contemporary palette typical of Behun’s style.

John Berson
Stella Papadopoulos
Sarah Porter

The site has unobstructed views south to the Atlantic Ocean and north to Coopers Neck Pond. The stringent setback requirements dictated a long and narrow structure parallel to the ocean, and we took this opportunity to create a string of three buildings, mostly one room deep, facing the water. The main house, swimming-pool cabana, and guest house share a materials palette of Luget limestone walls, Valders limestone decks, teak-framed windows and sliding doors, and eaves of white enameled metal. The three buildings are linked by a common basement, which contains a cinema, recreation room, garages, and gym.

The ocean-facing kitchen and family room with features and furniture designed by Kelly Behun and Bonetti/Kozerski. Bleached walnut, Carrera marble, and stainless steel are used throughout.

The main house is a two-story structure comprised of an entry hall, loggia, living room, kitchen and family room, library, and upstairs bedrooms. Corner windows and large expanses of glass are precisely deployed to take advantage of the views. At the center of the pool cabana is a spa with a rooftop aperture and a view across the pool to the ocean beyond. The L-shaped guest house was designed with modernist Southern California precedents in mind.

The river-stone-lined reflecting pool at the east end of the house features a sculpture by Joel Shapiro.