Richard Meier & Partners Architects LLP

Neugebauer House

Naples, Florida

1995 - 1998

Situated in a prestigious residential community on a one-and-a-half acre waterfront site, this house faces southwest over Doubloon Bay. One approaches the wedge-shaped site, which fans out towards the water, from a winding avenue lined with royal palm trees. In forecourt of the house a square grove of twenty-five palms serves as foil to a freestanding cylindrical garage faced in limestone. Since the turfed area of the forecourt is reinforced, pedestrians and cars are free to circulate across the greensward at will. Beyond, concealing the water, lies the horizontal façade of the house itself, clad in two by three foot limestone slabs backed by a concrete frame and masonry structure. Pierced at regular intervals by vertical slot windows, the façade conceals a wide, top-lit access corridor running the length of the house.

The linear organization consists of five parallel layers from front to back: access, service, living, sun terrace, and lap pool. A raised main entry penetrates the limestone wall of the front façade to give onto the corridor. A fifteen-foot module controls the structural bay and the incremental dimensions of all the cellular spaces. The main volumes, including both sleeping and living spaces, are arranged in a linear formation, affording each room an impressive view over the lap pool to the bay beyond.

The principal rooms and their attendant bathing and dressing areas as well as the kitchen are covered by a steel-frame butterfly roof cantilevered off paired steel stanchions at 15-foot centers. This roof, finished with a stone-paneled rain screen, satisfies the community requirement for a pitched roof while reinforcing the house’s orientation toward the water.

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