Berwyn Residence

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Located along Philadelphia’s historic Main Line on the edge of Chester County, the premise for this new 7,500-square-foot home began with the family’s search for the perfect old house. A dream of finding a historic structure that they could adapt to their lifestyle ultimately evolved into the construction of a completely new house that fulfills all their contemporary living needs, yet exudes the charm and patina of an old home.

The overall design takes cues from traditional homes in the surrounding area that demonstrate an architectural hierarchy initiated by the original mass followed by later, subsidiary masses. On the interior, the plan is divided between formal and informal spaces that can comfortably accommodate any occasion. The formal rooms include the center hall, parlor, dining room, butler’s pantry, and guest powder room. The parlor is embellished with a coffered ceiling and stained mahogany chair rail while the dining room includes windows with curved jambs. Both of these formal entertaining rooms are graced with paneled walls complete with custom mantels, fireplaces, and period-appropriate hardware.

In contrast, while retaining the traditional context of the home, the kitchen, breakfast room and adjoining family room, the mudroom and family entry all emanate convenience and informality. The reclaimed white oak and chestnut floors and the wood beams and trusses salvaged from a 1790s log barn contribute warmth and authenticity.

The technology that allows this new old house to function beautifully in the twenty-first century include a geo-thermal heating and air conditioning system, a hidden in-wall speaker system, and a central vacuum system. Period Architecture’s meticulous and thoughtful design is apparent throughout, from the large custom kitchen to the cathedral ceilinged family room to the intimate parlor, complete with its secret built-in wet bar. Accomplished with the region’s rich architectural heritage as a guide, this modern-era stone farmhouse presents the unique character and craftsmanship that make this architectural style so well loved.

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