Beachside Vacation Home with an Uncommon Simplicity

From Margaret Everton on March 1, 2010 in Charlotte

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It’s a common theme in home renovation. A homebuyer sees an intriguing house, has a dream, takes a risk, and hits the jackpot. It’s that kind of plot that characterized the saga of the Veltman beachside vacation home. Like any savvy homebuyer, the Veltmans knew the three laws of real estate—location, location, location—and they knew that the home they were considering was right at the top of the list in all three categories. It was on an island only accessible by ferry.

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The house has three major features. The first standout feature of the home is its surroundings. It is virtually ensconced in a scene of green foliage, oaks and palms. It exhibits a verdant coziness that is both reassuring and retreating.

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The feel is not quite what you would expect from a beach house, where things are supposed to be light, bright and airy. Rather, this house is more subdued, retreating and cozy. In Ruard’s words, “we wanted to…react to the environment.”

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The second feature of the house is Ruard Veltman’s special pride. An architect by trade, Ruard wanted a place where he could be alone to work, but still enjoy his summer home surroundings. He found the perfect solution in the bonus room area above the small garage. He calls it an “island within an island.” It gives him a full panoramic view of his surroundings, and grants him the solitude that his work requires.

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The third feature of the home is its rustic simplicity. The home originally lacked that cozy warmth that he was trying to achieve. In response, he knocked down walls, tore out old sheetrock, and replaced everything with wood paneling and a more open floor plan. The division between the kitchen and the main living space is achieved by a unique sweep of a carved wood divider.

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The simplicity of the kitchen is an attempt to mimic the campfire and creek of rustic cooking. And the oak barn siding enhancement in the master bedroom contributes to the overall laid-back feel of what a vacation home should really be.

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