Riverbend:  So named for its setting, this special residence is taking form on an elevated, 8-acre parcel with views up and down the Connecticut River (near the Connecticut River Museum) as well as across to the wilderness of Selden Island. The house is configured as lean and long, and situated to take full advantage of its site.


The inspirational design charge from the clients was simply “we want something that belongs on the river.” What a creative opportunity!  We began to study not whole buildings as prototypes, but rather pieces of construction that capture the essence of river buildings.  A kit of parts emerged:  exposed rafter tails, river jacks (the smaller cousins of beach stones), novelty siding (often seen on accessory structure), diamond-pattern asphalt shingles, a palette of white and hunter green.

It is a home that meets the requirements of today’s home buyers: open floor plan, personal space, office space, social distance and clean air systems.  Watch and learn more about design trends from the expert panel featured on CTC&G Connecticut Rising.

The Connecticut Shoreline is a desirable destination for NYC and many urban families to have a second home.


Final Phase:




Living Room






Sun Room


Phase Two Construction:


Phase One Construction:


Essex Riverbend Connecticut


Image result for green hexagonal roof asphalt tiles

The combination of these elements yielded something truly amazing: a new house, a new type of house, but one that looks like it’s been there and belongs there.  We are continuing to strengthen connections and the sense of place.  Recently, for example, we tracked downs one large slabs of brownstone for the fireplace hearths and surrounds.

The one-time quarry in Portland, CT. upriver some ten miles, was the lone source of brownstone in the U.S. and supplied all the material for Brooklyn’s famed row houses.  (Read more about the history of the quarry and NYC). Construction on Riverbend will continue through summer of 2020.

image courtesy NYTimes

Inspired material board:


Glazed Porcelain 1 Inch Hexagon | White with Black Pattern 1 Box - 10 sheets/8.4 sf.                                         IMG_0316.png