THE 2007 HC&G IDEA HOUSE
June 15, 2007
America is going green, and the 2007 HC&G Idea House is no exception. Part of a six-house community in the former Warner LeRoy estate (now a protected Amagansett woodland), the house's environmental footprint was a big consideration from the start. Noting that local zoning prohibits the removal of more than 20 percent of the surrounding forest, Idea House builder/developer Rich Gherardi of Sand Dollar Development says, "It's the most rigorous zoning requirement around. We were very careful about not taking down the mature trees that cover the entire LeRoy estate. This house is in a beautiful wooded forest that just doesn't exist anywhere else in the Hamptons." In terms of construction materials, Gherardi takes pains to exceed minimum standards both to prevent waste and to ensure quality construction. For example, he is using 5/8-inch drywall instead of the standard 1/2-inch drywall, which helps to keep temperatures cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
Much of the décor, too, will be environmentally friendly. In the Formal Living Room, design directors Brian Brady and Franco Biscardi are using natural cotton and linen upholstery, as well as window treatments of hand-woven reed shades framed by raw silk draperies. They are also "recycling" by using beautiful furnishings from Sentimento Antiques and Mecox Gardens. For the Porch, designer Eugenia Au Kim, who embraces Fung Shui techniques, is creating a tent-like atmosphere with natural drapery. "I'm calling it the summer pavilion," she says. "This space is a gift to oneself, a place to relax physically and spiritually, because I think that's a part of green living, too." In addition to natural polyresin furniture from Walters Wicker, Kim is using natural hand-woven vine chairs and clay and porcelain dinnerware, all from Thailand. To echo the surrounding landscape, she is installing a riverstone area rug. "I wanted a very tactile, sensuous feeling, and also to ground the area in the earth," Kim says.