St. Petersburg, Florida
Shrouded by thick tropical foliage and a dense tree canopy, the Sunrise House stretches across its east-facing site which fronts Little Bayou, a small inlet off Tampa Bay. The original home, characterized by a low-slung roof, continuous panels of glass, and exposed concrete block fins, was designed by William Harvard in 1954. We were tasked with preserving and restoring the mid-century modern details of the home, while inserting contemporary interventions, expanding spaces, and enhancing views.
To respect the home’s mid-century character, we took a surgical approach to the renovation, removing walls only where necessary. We began by reorienting the kitchen to create a line of sight that stretches from the bayou, through the home, and to the pool area. We mimicked the series of sliding glass doors on the front façade in the rear, opening the living, dining, and kitchen to poolside views. We removed old carpeting and restored the original terrazzo flooring, which extends throughout the home, grounding the interior spaces with a subtle play of white, gray, and black tones.
In the kitchen, walnut cabinetry with sculptural pulls and a pinwheel patterned tile backsplash pick up the colors in the terrazzo floor and nod to the home’s mid-century modern roots. This motif is continued in the bedrooms and bathrooms where built-ins provide space for storage and opportunities for color and texture.
On the exterior, we left the overall form untouched, but painted the dark red façade bright white and the front door a sunny yellow. We removed dilapidated screen structures from the front and back of the house to expose the living, kitchen, and dining spaces to uninterrupted natural light. A new hardscape design visually weaves together the front entry patio and the pool deck through a playful arrangement of crushed shell and concrete hexagonal pavers that echo the terrazzo floor inside. From small details to overall form, the Sunrise House reimagines a mid-century home for modern Florida living.
AIA Florida Merit Award of Excellence, 2023
Photography: Seamus Payne