Brooklyn may seem like an unlikely place to find a modern home with a swimming pool, but that’s just what one empty nest couple created in Mill Basin, the borough’s southernmost neighborhood.
The couple handpicked designer and Peter Marino Architect alum Edith Taichman of LETS SAY. for the project, which resulted in a 4,000-square-foot sanctuary complete with full-size, in-ground salt-water swimming pool. The four-bedroom, six-bathroom home also features a six-person sauna, elevator, outdoor fire pit, driveway and garage.
“They love entertaining, are super social and very engaged with their community and they wanted a home that would allow for that,” says Taichman. “And it was a really exciting project, because we could customize every inch of the space, and did not have to work within the constraints of an existing structure.”
The house features a neutral color palette with some pops of color to add texture. “The owners are fairly conservative and wanted to keep things streamlined and clean, but not sterile,” says Taichman, who pushed the couple outside their comfort zone—to great success. “They like color—and stressed that there should be some—and a lot of light, so the directive was to try and combine all of those elements, taking care not to make the spaces feel too sparse or too cluttered.”
The ground floor level features decorative plaster ceilings, crown mouldings, a poplar fireplace, and a mix of Jerusalem stone floors. The kitchen features custom hardwood stained cabinets, a Carrara marble backsplash, and Bosch kitchen appliances. The dining room is outfitted with chinoiserie wallpaper and white oak herringbone parquet floors, with a mix of new and vintage furniture from ABC Carpet & Home and 1stdibs (one standout is a Macassar ebony and brushed granite bar). Pendant lights from Restoration Hardware hang in various spaces throughout the home.
Textiles and pillows from John Robshaw and John Derian help add some color and vibrancy to the upstairs bedrooms. The lush outdoor landscaping is downright suburban with different species of bushes, fruit trees (cherries, persimmons and grapes), and a small vegetable patch. With the house being in a low-lying flood zone, Taichman had to make some pragmatic choices such as putting in a stone floor in the living room versus wood (“Happily, we were able to warm it up with a graphic textured rug”).
With a pool and an orchard, none of this is what you would expect in a neighborhood in New York City. “It’s pretty far from the Brooklyn most people know, with no Starbucks, no hipsters, and a 15 minute car ride from the nearest subway,” says Taichman. “It’s pretty much as suburban as you can get living in Brooklyn.”