We couldn’t be in Destin and not do our usual trip down 30A — it’s the road with the ‘new urbanism‘ communities: Seaside, WaterColor, Rosemary Beach, Alys Beach…
One of the most interesting homes along that stretch is Charlie Hilton’s (he owns three hotels in PCB) home, at Paradise by the Sea:
We’ve watched this house being built for what must be eight years now. The architect is Arthur Dyson (some pics of it at his site), Dean Emeritus at the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture.
He writes of the home:
Nestled amid the sand dunes on the Gulf of Mexico at Panama City, Florida, the Hilton residence contains 9,500 square feet of living space. Primary rooms are suspended on concrete pods at various levels within a greenhouse structure of coral-tinted reflective glazing. One interior stairway encircles a glass-enclosed elevator, while another winds around fully grown native palms. The top lacuna of an exterior two-level saltwater swimming pool fountains into the lower basin, then enters the interior by flowing beneath the edge of a glazed wall. Tiered roof wings sweep upward, forming a series of clerestories that shield the open floor plan from excessive sun exposure while presenting unobstructed views of the oceanfront during daytime and allowing stargazing at night. Remote-controlled fabric panels placed strategically over the glazing provide additional solar protection.
Interior spaces flow freely without walls or partitions, while scale and volume are tempered through the placement of palms and other tropical flora. Level changes rhythmically establish area separations and maximize direct ocean views. The varying colors and textures of terraces, walls, planters, and pools avoid sharp definitions of boundary, integrating the the interior and exterior of the home into a sense of contained movement. The gestures of the form join harmoniously with the surrounding swell of seabird, ocean waves, and sand dunes that embrace an exceptional building site. Everything set forward for the program by the clients indicated a desire for fluidity. All the exterior benefits of the site, such as sea breezes and ocean sunsets, are integrated into the residence to establish a refuge from the hectic pace of a busy business life and create a soothing place to relax, read, and write.
Best: these driftwood horses by Heather Jansch at Alys Beach: