Cozy Northwoods charm meets sleek sophistication in this large-scale Wisconsin stunner by En Masse Architecture and Design.
The clients dreamt of a contemporary timber lodge with unique structural elements that would make for the ultimate retreat from their primary home in the city.
Seeking a retreat from their primary home, a successful Madison, Wis.-based couple with four children turned to Logan Square-based firm En Masse Architecture and Design. The brief? To create a rustic yet contemporary timber home on an expansive lot surrounded by nature on the Wisconsin River.
In the dining room, the muted tones of CB2’s Dylan table in acacia wood, chairs by Baker Furniture and Waterworks Taurus 2 tile allow the magnificent view of the woods to take center stage.
“They wanted the home to feel integrated into the landscape,” notes En Masse partner and design director Lucas Goldbach, who led the design along with the firm’s interiors team, with founding partner Mike Shively managing the architecture side, “so the design team used the local terrain as a starting point for the color scheme and materiality—from the piney greens to the sky blue tones and orangey browns that molded into the natural woods. The design team kept the color themes consistent throughout, while still considering how to give each space its own identity.”
The second-floor entry catwalk features Racerback lounge chairs by Baker Furniture.
No helicopter clients here, notes Goldbach, as the couple preferred to be hands off once the vision for the home was established.
A custom bed by Ace Covering Upholstery covered in Kravet Upriver Granite fabric plus Topo pendants from Tech Lighting add fl air to a guest bedroom.
“They trusted the En Masse team to create an environment that merged the family’s love of the outdoors while infusing elements of 1930s and 1940s lodging with a modern twist—a contemporary lodge with unique structural elements. They wanted the interior’s quality to reflect that of the solid architecture with heavy timbers serving as a driving force of the design. They also wanted a space that was sophisticated, yet durable; functional and inviting for large groups to enjoy.”
The powder room is decked out with a Duravit Vero vanity, Mona Lisa glass tile and Tom Dixon flask pendant lights.
“Th e sheer scale of the house made it really exciting, but also presented challenges around creating a cohesive design,” admits Goldbach, “[such as] furnishing the large-scale rooms in a way that’s comfortable, livable and a space you want to spend time in.”
Sycamore wallpaper from the Lawson-Fenning collection for Hygge & West adds drama to a guest bedroom.
En Masse’s solution was to focus on impactful pieces, like the 15-foot-by-15-foot Poliform sectional in the great room, which spoke to the scale of the room, and pairing it with a massive Withers & Grain marble and steel coffee table.
With a Brio sectional sofa by Natuzzi Italia and swivel chairs by Kravet, the basement media room is ideal for lounging.
Another challenge was to balance the dual approaches of rustic-lodge aesthetic with a more contemporary, fresh feel. “We looked to take advantage of the beautiful views throughout with vast windows and interior pocket sliding doors that allow the dining room to become an outdoor space when the exterior doors are opened,” explains Goldbach. “A full ‘indoor-outdoor’ experience.”
A natural gathering space, the kitchen a boasts a custom 16-foot island fabricated from Pyrolave volcanic rock flown in from France.
Given the clients’ passion for entertaining, the En Masse team is particularly proud to have nailed that aspect of the design. “The layout of the home lends for hosting, entertaining and relaxing with family or guests,” says Goldbach. “The kitchen—with its custom 16-foot-long Pyrolave volcanic rock island flown in from France—is a gathering mecca and also a hinging point between the great room and four seasons room. They all flow into one another, but two layers of doors add dimension and create interior and exterior conversations and spaces. We also completed one of the most elaborate bunk rooms we’ve ever done by embracing the high vaulted ceilings and adding 10 bunks as well as a secret ladder that goes to a catwalk in the rafters of the great room for kids to explore.”
A free-standing Barcelona tub from Victoria Albert with Riobel tub filler forms the centerpiece of the primary bathroom, which also features a striking vintage light fixture.
Sums up Goldbach, “The clients were extremely pleased with the end result and to come into a space that felt considered and finished. They’ve really used the space and appreciate that they don’t have to worry about wear and tear based on the material selection and instead can just live in comfort and ease while building memories.”
Modern timber lodge retreat
En Masse Architecture and Design
ATELIER DE TROUPE
CARLISLE WIDE PLANK FLOORS
HUDSON VALLEY LIGHTING
HYGGE & WEST
Guest bedroom wallpaper
MCGEE & CO.
Primary bedroom side tables
MONA LISA STONE & TILE
Main bath tile
Basement media room sofa
OSCAR ISBERIAN RUGS
Main living space rugs
Main living room sofa
Dining/four seasons rooms tile
WITHERS & GRAIN
Living room coffee table
Photography by: Photographed by Ryan Hainey