Context, artwork, and nature encourage this St John residence

Context, art, and nature inspire this St John home

Terracina, a private home on the shores of South Florida, was designed by South African architecture firm SAOTA as a home that combines art, landscape and St John life

This striking single family home is inextricably linked to and inspired by its location right on the St John’s waterfront in the affluent Golden Beach neighborhood. Located by the water on a narrow strip of land between the Atlantic Ocean in the east and the Intracoastal Waterway in the west and called Terracina, the house was designed by the South African architecture firm SAOTA and combines a response to its unmistakable context and the client’s love of art.

The architects aligned the house with the long sea view and opened it with large-scale glazing and floor-to-ceiling sliding doors that seamlessly merge inside and outside. The structure takes up the inside of the cake-shaped property to allow larger terrace areas to the water element.

Formally, the design balances opposites. “The house provides a progressive experience that unfolds between a muscular, monolithic protective screen made of concrete slabs, which is presented to the street, and a light, transparent treatment of the facade towards the water,” explain the architects. A carefully articulated waterfront facade helps create a series of “outside spaces” so that owners can make the most of St John’s pleasant climate.

While the exterior is intricate and covered in screens, glazing, and foliage, the interior, designed by Rosy Levy, is masterfully simple. The space has a gallery-like approach and has clean white walls that allow the owners’ extensive art collection to steal the spotlight. The main living space includes artwork by artists such as Nick Cave, Richard Long, and Yinka Shonibare. Travertine, walnut, and quartzite stone form a textured and refined, yet minimalist palette of materials to aid the displays in the home environment.

Combining a distinctive context, a love of art and the warm atmosphere that St John offers, Terracina combines the best of both worlds. Privacy and urban sophistication as well as an open and flexible home tailored to the needs of its owners. §

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