. . . . .The Best House of the Year . . . . .
To Mr. George D. Pratt goes the $1,000 prize offered for the best house built and first occupied in 1913 - "Killenworth", Glen Cove, L. I., of which Messrs. Trowbridge & Ackerman were the architects.
|Upon the upper level is the south terrace, connecting the loggia with the tea house which is outside the picture to the left.|
It is the unanimous opinion of the judges, Mr. Guy Lowell of New York, Mr. Howard Shaw of Chicago, and the Editor, that Killenworth, the country home of Mr. George D. Pratt, at Glen Cove, L. I., designed by Messrs. Alexander Buel Trowbridge and Frederick L. Ackerman, is the best house submitted. A check for $1,000 has been sent to Mr: Pratt and the Country Life in America gold medal with a check for $500 t0 Messrs. Trowbridge & Ackerman.
The judges have also named the following entries for Honorable Mention, and these houses will appear in forthcoming issues of the magazine: The home of Mr. F. C. Morgan, Senneville, P. Q., Canada - David Shennan, architect; the home of Mr. Boardman Robinson, Forest Hills, L. I. - Albro & Lindeberg, architects; the ranch house of Mr. Pierre E. Letchworth, Covina, Cal. Reginald D. Johnson, architect; a house built for Dr. George Woodward, St. Martin's Gate, St. Martin's, Pa. - Robert R. McGoodwin, achitect; the home of Mr. Clayton S. Cooper, Fieldston, N. Y. - Albro & Lindeberg, architects; and the home of Mr. Charles A. Slosson, Riverside, Conn. - Louis L. Stockton and Henry C. Pelton, architects.
|The pool occupies the low spot filled by a rose gardern in connection with the house that was torn down, and by its location upon a major axis of the dessign, determines the location of the house upon the site. It is used as a swimming pool.|
|Block plan, showing the faultless coordination of the various parts of the building with its surroundings - particularly the sunken service court.|
In the former residence the entrance drive swept up the grade and passed under a porte cochere at a point corresponding to the axis of the pool on the south terrace. The loop required for turning a carriage or car was approximately 100o feet to the west of the porte cochere. It was obvious that a very valuable portion of the grounds was given over to the entrance drive at the expense of the outdoor life of the family. The first point of importance determined was, therefore, the entrance door at the eastern end of the site. The porch was placed at the western end to secure both the prevailing summer breezes and the view. The dining-room was placed in the northeast corner to secure the morning sun and the superb view over the Sound.
|The service court lies beyond the far wall at the right, completely isolated and on a lower level.|
|Stairway leading from the south terrace to the flower garden, with the service court hidden at the right.|
The owners gave the architects a complete programme of requirements with approximate dimensions of the principal rooms, and a request to include an open attic on the third floor, lighted with dormer windows, but containing no family bedrooms. The survey showed ground sloping downward toward the south, north, and east. At the western end of the site stands a small hill which is surmounted by a medieval water tower in shingted architecture. The need of screening this was an early requirement of the programme. On the site of the present pool there existed a sunken rose garden surrounded by a slender latticed trellis for the support of rose vines. While the character of this garden was charming, it was too small in area and scale to suit the new development, and the larger and more massive pool treatment was substituted. It will be observed that the pool treatment entered the problem at an early date, for a glance at axes shows that the pool fixes the position of the house on its site. The south terrace with balustrade and tea house grew out of the desire to utilize to the utmost the ground near the house, and at the same time to screen the water tower. The heavy planting serves the double purpose of masking the water tower and of providing an effective background for the tea house. The architecture preferred by the owners was a simple, unaffected adaptation of the Early Renaissance in England. It was particularly stated, greatly to the satisfaction of the architects, that the more ornate examples of English work were to be avoided. The desired impression was that which is obtained through carefully studied proportions and scale rather than through the use of ornamental forms which commonly are associated with Jacobean architecture and which too often form the basis of adverse critical comment. If "Killenworth" lives as a specimen of vital architecture, defying the caprices of changing fashions, it will be because of the fact that it is not a copy of any structure in England, or anywhere else, but is a sincere attempt to solve a special problem peculiar to the Glen Cove site and applicable to no other site which does not possess a similar collection of local governing conditions. While its architecture is inspired from English sources, it is interpreted through American eyes and controlled and governed by American selective taste. The materials used in its construction are all American with the exception of the steel casement windows, which were made in England. The general wall material is a seam-faced granite from Massachusetts; the trim is Indiana limestone; the slate is from Vermont. The house is fireproof and very substantially constructed. With the kind of care such houses usually receive, it ought to last indefinitely.
|The square hall at the head of the entrance stairs, looking into the gallery. The walls and floor are of a warm buff marble.|
|The gallery, paneled in old English oak,. The scheme of decoration has a special significance in view of Mr. Pratt's great love of hunting.|
|The living room, in which is paneled in buuternut, with the lartger beams carved. This room is about twenty-five by forty feet in size and has anthoer great bay at the oppisite end.|
|With windows to north, east and west, the dining room occupies the end of the north wing. In the steel casements are leaded some odd bits of old stained glass that Mr.Pratt has picked up from time to time.|
|Overlooking the south terrace and pool is the music room, gray and white in the of the brothers Adam.|
MR. PRATT would like to add a word to the above out line of the problem as described by the architects. In the family's experience, the house has proven itself most livable, both for the everyday family life and for entertaining. On the main floor the relation of the rooms to each other is especially well worked out. They open into one another in a particularly spacious and pleasing way, affording long vistas on the
|In spite of the size of the house and the number of its rooms, it will be noticed that nearly every room has an outlook in two or more directions.|
|The owners bedroom, extending across the full width of the west wing with exposure to north, west and south. The paper is soft figured gray.|
|The arrangement of the owners' sleeping quarters is particularly interesting, with the two dressing rooms, spacious wardrobe space, baths and boudoir.|
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