A house in the Hamptons is typically equipped for equal parts entertaining and relaxing, and that's exactly what founder and principal of design firm Hyphen & Co. Shelly Lynch-Sparks had in mind when working on this South Hampton home. Built in 1984 by an architect for his own personal use, the five-bedroom, four-bath house complete with a pool, patio, and porch with stadium-style steps manages to feel both cozy and contemporary.
"The house had such incredible bones, and we worked hard to celebrate those elements without losing any of its character," Lynch-Sparks explains. Those bones include a beautiful timber post-and-beam ceiling, which is now contrasted by modern renovations like a sliding wall system to open the living room space up during the summertime and new skylights in the kitchen. "The goal was to modernize a rustic-style home while opening up the space to more light and softer textiles and furnishings," the designer adds.
If you can't make it to the Hamptons, taking a look inside this charming property is the next best thing. Keep scrolling for a tour of the home and to learn more about the renovation and design process that went into the final look.
When you first enter the house, you're greeted by the tall ceilings and bright open space of the downstairs living room. "I could spend the majority of the day curled up in the living room," Lynch-Sparks admits. From the rustic wood-beamed ceiling to the brick wall fireplace and glam chandelier, it's easy to understand why.
The space was designed with the seasons in mind, in order to transition from winter to summer seamlessly. "In the winter, it's covered in fur blankets and floor poufs to relax by the fire, and in the summer, simple pillows and light knitted throws to accommodate your best afternoon nap game," Lynch-Sparks says.
Lynch-Sparks explains that she and her team renovated and removed the entire side of the house in order to incorporate a sliding wall system to the space. Now, during the summer, the wall opens up directly to the patio for a modern indoor and outdoor space.
Lynch-Sparks and her team custom-built this banquette area complete with café tables meant for lounging, enjoying breakfast, or getting a bit of work done. They add something special to the space that leads right out onto the patio.
The kitchen also underwent extensive renovations in order to invite in more natural light and provide ample entertaining space. "The space was a dark box before," Lynch-Sparks reveals, although you'd never guess the room was anything but bright and light-filled, as it is now.
Lynch-Sparks opened up the kitchen to even more light by adding in two skylights as well as a space over the kitchen sink. "The window slides open and on the other side is a wet bar to order a drink," the designer explains. This way you can top off your beverage without dripping pool water or spilling sand in the house.
The dining area is one of the most important spaces in this home built for entertaining. "Creating a space where they could have large family gatherings or small intimate dinners without going over the top was key," Lynch-Sparks points out. According to her, the space is simple, elegant, and to the point.
A simple, cozy guest bedroom is situated upstairs. Although it's smaller than the primary bedroom, the A-frame space would make a perfect respite. It's an elevated room with just the right amount of beachy décor.
The term "Primary Bedroom" is now widely used to describe the largest bedroom in the home, as it better reflects the space’s purpose. Many realtors, architects, interior designers, and the Real Estate Standards Association have recognized the potentially discriminatory connotations in the term "Master." Read more about our Diversity and Inclusion Pledge.
Both guest bedrooms keep in line with the neutral color scheme of the rest of the house. "We started with a base of neutrals and layered in tons of textures and patterns to add depth and comfort," says Lynch-Sparks.
"This room was designed to be a comfy den," according to Lynch-Sparks. Rather than have a TV in the downstairs living room, she created this cozy nook to serve as a place to escape and unwind. Note the glass knee wall behind the sofa that expertly opens up the space to the living room below.
Upstairs, you'll also find the primary bedroom, designed with simplicity and relaxation in mind. "We celebrated the architecture in this room," Lynch-Sparks says. "The timber beams allow the room to feel a bit cozier as they frame out the bed into its own nook," she continues.
This all-white bathroom might just be the most modern space in the entire house. The sleek white tub, clear walk-in shower, and subtle storage shelving make the room seriously inviting. It's the perfect spot to relax and refresh after a day at the beach.
Of course, there had to be some rustic elements in the bathroom to soften the modern space. The distressed wood sink and exposed lightbulbs here do just that.
The custom-built patio is the perfect place for hosting guests on a warm summer night. "We designed a beautiful pergola to flank and frame the living room sliding door to make the transition from inside to outside feel seamless," says Lynch-Sparks.
Couches and a banquette bench provide ample seating for entertaining outdoors. The space is cozy with throw pillows, cushions, lanterns, and hanging lights.