This is the second in a series of blog posts describing the houses on the 4th annual Hearth & Home Kitchen Tour of Westfield and Mountainside homes. For information and to purchase tickets for the tour, visit the website at htisnj.com.
As you round the corner to this house on the hill, it is difficult to imagine what will greet you when you enter this beautifully reconstructed craftsman style home. The original house, built in the 1950’s, was a three-bedroom ranch. The second owners expanded the footprint, enlarging the kitchen and dining room and adding a family room and office. They reworked the lower level to include an entertainment area servicing their newly-added pool, which doubled as an ice skating rink in winter.
The current homeowners purchased this property in 1998 and it is clear as you enter the house what drew them to it – a spectacular view that was their own. The renovation built around this view was undertaken in the fall of 2010 and is just recently completed. The architect, Arthur Henn, was able to make the dream of the family a reality with this final rendition.
You enter the home and immediately realize that the central part of the house is planned around the breathtaking view which includes the Watchung Reservation and the neighboring towns to the Manhattan Skyline and the “gateway” to the NJ Shore. The renovation involved redistributing rooms and building up, always keeping the view in sight. The main living area has an open floor plan with access to a beautifully redesigned, expanded kitchen and formal dining area that are reversed from the original home. The rear wall to the view is entirely of glass with breaks and transoms strategically placed so that the view is not obstructed. To the right of the space is the kitchen area complete with dual islands used for eating and serving family and friends. The islands complement each other in color, one in white maple topped with Virginia Mist granite; the other cherry wood with Danby Marble from Vermont.
The bright kitchen is surrounded by white craftsman style cabinets provided by Crown Pointe Cabinetry, NH and is complete with a Sub Zero refrigerator and Wolf range top which sits above large storage drawers. Double wall ovens, two dishwashers and very convenient refrigerator drawers complete the working space. Above the range top is a backsplash of "random broken joint" Calcatta Gold marble mosaics from Westfield Tile which echo the colors of the counter tops. An extra sink welcomes help in a prep area of this beautiful kitchen.
The left portion of the living space is dedicated to a relaxed, informal gathering room with a gas fireplace, entertainment center, and lanai off the back of the house. A second story cantilever loft provides for extra storage and living space, as well as room for expansion. To the left of the main living space is the master suite with ample windows and exposure to the view.
Two additional bedrooms and full bath complete these living quarters. Off to the right of the main living space is the family room and office, which are part of the second generation addition. Additional guest bedrooms are on the lower level, as well as a family play room with access to the pool and yard and complete with a functioning work kitchen. This house has come to the final transformation for which it was destined.
Contributed by Daria MacDonald, a Westfield resident and past president of Holy Trinity Interparochial School Home & School Association.