Seaside Victorian Cottage

The historic picturesque town of Spring Lake, New Jersey, was a popular 19th century resort. Two miles of uninterrupted sandy beach and boardwalk attracted vacationers from the overheated city to the magnificent grand hotels of Spring Lake. Wealthy Victorians built their majestic “seaside cottages” along the orthogonal streets and bluestone sidewalks. Each neatly planned block of this seaside village reveals a catalog of majestic Victorian and revival styles of architecture. Many of these imposing houses have been tenderly preserved—maintaining the Victorian character of Spring Lake.

It is in this inspired context, that Morehouse MacDonald and Associates was given the opportunity to design a “seaside cottage.” Our client requested that we design an authentic seaside Victorian, indistinguishable from its 120-year old forebearers, authentic in detail, proportion, materials and color.

Family and friends are greeted with a rambling front porch and a beautifully detailed mahogany front door with beveled glass. The parlor, dining room, and library are organized around the formal entry and stair. The kitchen and circular breakfast room overlook the meticulously landscaped backyard and swimming pool. The long, pre-automobile, gravel and brick driveway, leads to the freestanding “shingle-style” carriage house.

The second floor master bedroom suite opens out to a porch with views of the Atlantic Ocean and a mahogany study is located in the top of the circular turret. Two second floor bedrooms share a very Victorian sleeping porch for warm sunny nights.

Fine woodworking details and materials express the heritage of this “seaside cottage.” Scale, proportion, and color help this seaside cottage fit seamlessly with its old and new neighbors.


John S. MacDonald, AIA

project lead

Peter R. Bruneau

interior designer

Mollie Johnson Interiors, Inc.

landscape architect

Sudbury Design, Inc.

general contractor

Barry Construction

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