Ocean Home magazine has selected Morehouse MacDonald and Associates as one of the Top 50 Coastal Architects every year since 2017. And for good measure. Our firm has successfully exceeded client expectations for new coastal homes and significant renovations across nearly every state on the US eastern seaboard, from Florida to Maine. In addition, MMA is a preferred architect at St Kitts’ exciting resort destination development, Christophe Harbour, in the West Indies, where we have designed several large beautiful homes in diverse and challenging sites.
Designing along the coast has unique challenges, regardless of which region of the world. A coastal location demands the architect is knowledgeable about appropriate building materials, doors and windows, and durable finishes that fortify your new home for harsher elements that come with marine environments. Many clients make the mistake of hiring architects who have not designed for a coastal site only to experience substantial problems with materials and finishes years down the line.
Having designed homes for coastal sites for more than 30 years, our firm has acquired deep expertise in what materials and building systems to use and which ones to ignore for coastal building locations. We have developed competencies in utilizing woodworking and finishing systems that are common in the New England shipbuilding community. The superior skillsets of New England’s craftsmen have been thoroughly studied and put to good use when we design in coastal environments.
MMA has advanced competence in designing homes with extra-large glass openings in high-wind coastal locales and regularly advises our clients on the merits of installing Zone-3 or higher impact-rated doors and windows. Many of our international clients have led us to develop high-security and protection systems for their homes in the Caribbean—which we can employ for our clients anywhere in the world.
In St Kitts, MMA has advanced its knowledge of building on steep lots with demanding retaining walls and site drainage conditions. We have utilized innovative curved retaining walls that gain extra strength in their usual flowing design. We have also designed a new house that is partially floating over the marina on concrete piles while simultaneously creating a private man-made sand-filled beach.
As MMA continues to design homes for discerning clients from around the world—whether in Florida, South Carolina, New England, or the West Indies—our knowledge of the unique challenges that come with designing in coastal environments continue to advance us to the forefront of coastal architecture.