Designer style and panoramic views break the mold at The PinehillsBy Jaci Conry | Photography by Michael Lee
Situated atop a hill known as The Ridge, Dawn’s Light is the newest residential neighborhood at The Pinehills. Surrounded by woodlands, the site offers sweeping panoramic views across Cape Cod Bay.
“It’s one of the highest points on the coast between Maine and North Carolina,” says Tony Green, managing partner for Pinehills LLC. On a clear day you can see the Provincetown Monument, the water tanks of each town on the Cape and down to Sandy Neck Beach in Barnstable.
Since it was first established 16 years ago, The Pinehills has been one of the country’s most successful planned communities in the northeast. It sprawls over 3,300 acres, more than half of which is preserved open space, and features two championship golf courses, a thriving village green surrounded by shops, restaurants and a full-size grocery store. The community is also home to a world-class spa and hotel and more than 2,000 residential units.
The Dawn’s Light neighborhood is bordered by thick scrub pines and towering oaks that converge to create a private, retreat-like setting. “There aren’t that many homes anywhere you go that can have an ocean view and be in a wooded setting,” says Green. “At night you see can see the twinkling lights of Cape Cod. It’s pretty amazing.”
Such a spectacular site deserved a neighborhood of homes that was as singularly special. For years, Green had consulted with John DaSilva, principal architect of Chatham’s Polhemus Savery DaSilva. The two had an easy rapport and strove to find a project that they could collaborate on. When the time came to develop Dawn’s Light—the newest residential phase at The Pinehills—the opportunity finally arose. Green tapped Polhemus Savery DaSilva to design and build the neighborhood’s 15 homes.
“Dawn’s Light is a very unique neighborhood with the water views and wooded lots,” says DaSilva, who is known for his classic shingle-style structures that pair sophisticated details with timeless elements and whimsical ideas. “It’s the type of setting that’s perfect for us.”
DaSilva’s home designs for the neighborhood include three slightly different floor plans for classic shingle style homes with sophisticated details, which buyers may select and add custom modifications. “I like to refer to it as a nautical woodland,” says DaSilva. “The homes are designed to aesthetically fit in a wooded context but also feel like a New England seaside home because of the direct ocean views.”
The first home designed for the neighborhood offers potential homebuyers a chance to tour the possibilities. Whimsical touches, like pinecone cutouts in the shutters add personality and the architecture includes several nods to the surroundings. The columns on the wraparound front porch refer vaguely to tree trunks. “A broad gable faces the street and overhangs around the house exhibit both shingle style and elements of woodland bungalows,” says DaSilva. “They make the whole house vaguely top-heavy, like a tree spreading its branches as it goes up. The architecture is symbolic; it’s both traditional and rooted in context.”
Inside the home the main living spaces are open to one another. The kitchen, living room and dining area are distinctly defined by soffits in the ceiling. The entry and stair hall come off of one end of the living room. “From the front entry you can see through to the living room and out to the view,” says DaSilva. “It’s similar to the way we often design waterfront homes—all first floor rooms have direct views.”
A light color palette prevails in the kitchen where white cabinetry contrasts with the island, which is topped with a thick slab of quartzite, and painted a blue-gray hue that emulates the ocean. Classic Kitchens & Interiors worked on the scheme alongside the Polhemus Savery DaSilva team.
A cathedral ceiling and oversized windows ensure that natural light fills the living area and entry hall at all times. The street-facing side of the home has a two car-garage, study and a master suite. The second floor is devoted to two or three additional bedrooms, depending on the layout selected—there’s even an attic that could be converted into living space.
The back of the house is sited to take advantage of the panoramic coastal view with an expansive deck, screened-in porch and ground level terrace. Clear red cedar sheaths the interior walls of a sunroom, screen frames and ceiling while the floor is made from a durable composite decking material.
The finished walk-out basement features a multi-purpose room with French doors that open to the terrace, where a fire pit beckons, providing another dreamy spot to sit back to relish the remarkable surroundings.