Incorporating a marine theme into the architectural design of a home brings owners one step closer to a seaside escape. Portholes, sculptures of aquatic creatures and striped wood flooring reminiscent of a boat deck add unique touches that transport naval enthusiasts and ocean lovers to a waterfront paradise even if they are miles away from the sea. From an apartment that pays homage to the historic booking office of an iconic ocean liner to a contemporary masterpiece inspired by yacht living, these homes epitomize the nautical spirit and combine one-of-a-kind accents to make each space unique.
A true ode to boating and all things nautical, this custom-built home personifies a luxurious life at sea. Upon designing the space, the owners requested a home to reflect their love of the ocean and maritime history. Architect Joel Miroglio of Oakland-based M.A.+D. Architects worked to bring the vision of the owners to life, but not without a few challenges. The intricate design of the space took almost five years to complete before construction began in 2003. Although it was initially difficult to build with the constraints put in place by the building and planning departments, the home was successfully completed in 2005.
“My favorite thing about the home is that the whole house has the ocean top-of-mind,” remarked Miroglio. The home is, in fact, adjacent to the ocean making the ocean as much of the space as its yacht-like details. Inside, an elevator transports residents to each of its three floors. The first floor consists of a two-car garage and additional storage rooms with a built-in barbeque grill and outdoor shower on the exterior. The main living area and several other rooms are located on the second floor including the kitchen which hosts pendant lights reminiscent of glass ball floats used by fishermen and a media room with a relief sculpture carved into the wall of dolphins frolicking. Boat-like elements can be found throughout including the balcony which resembles a ship’s prow and authentic portholes in various areas. The third-floor hosts three bedrooms as well as two full baths and a laundry area. Web ID: QOWW88
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
This stunning building situated in London’s West End, has significant ties to one of the most famed ocean liners in history which served as the headquarters of White Star Line, where tickets were sold to board the Titanic before its infamous descent in 1912. Bruce Ismay, the Chairman of the White Star Line famously claimed the Titanic was “unsinkable” in these offices prior to the calamity of the voyage. Unfortunately, the building fell into a decline after the tragedy and was repurposed over the years including use as an office for the British Ministry of Defense, a Barclays Bank and even a Texas Embassy Cantina restaurant. In 2016, following a $35 million restoration, the building was redeveloped into a residential structure with six luxury apartments and a two-story penthouse.
The entrance and exterior of the building have been carefully restored to preserve many of its period features, including the two European oak doors and 18-foot-high ceilings. Inside, the apartments thoughtfully incorporate subtle reminders of the building’s history, including a color palette of steely blues, soft neutrals and greys, as well as round light fixtures reminiscent of air bubbles found in water. These contemporary residences also include luxurious details that the guests in the Titanic’s first class may have experienced, like chandeliers, marble bathrooms and exceptional views. Web ID: ETEW88
THE BOAT HOUSE
PALM BEACH, FLORIDA
Named the first prize winner of the House of the Future in the 1939 World’s Fair, this maritime themed estate provided a glimpse into the future of contemporary design following its unveiling. The home was constructed in 1940 by Belford Shoumate, who is known as one of the most renowned Modernist architects on the island of Palm Beach, Florida. The estate was designed to resemble a boat sitting on a lot overlooking the Intracoastal waterway. Although it was recently renovated, many of the original furnishings can still be found in the home.
Nautical features are included throughout such as concrete porthole columns along the walls on the first floor and steamship railings on the upper roof deck. Much like the steamships of the era, each of the six bedrooms were designed with doors leading to the outside, which on a ship would take you to the exterior decks. The Boat House, also called the Fore and Aft House, is one of the few estates in Palm Beach with its own deeded oceanfront cabana, which is situated just steps away from the main structure. Additional amenities include an air conditioned 2-car garage, a new boat lift and an electrical deep-water dock. Web ID: ZFDB88
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