Maine island home

From Summer Cottage to Full-Time Home

Partner Post: Houzz

A retired NHL player and his family expand their former vacation home with a big addition and an interesting side-by-side design.

Photos by Jonathan Reece Photography

After Eric Weinrich hung up his skates and retired from professional hockey, he returned to his native Maine with his wife, Tracy, their two children, and two black Labs. But the place they had enjoyed as a summer home for many years needed some TLC to make it work as their new permanent residence. So they embarked on a renovation to update the cottage, enlarge the kitchen, and build an addition with a master suite, study, game room, powder room, and an exercise area, all while maintaining the spirit of the original structure.

Who lives here: Eric and Tracy Weinrich, their college-age children, Ben and Emily, and two black Labs

Location: An island in Casco Bay

Size: 4 bedrooms, 4½ baths

Design Team: Denise Stringer of Denise Stringer Interior Design; John Weinrich (architect); Peter Warren of Warren Construction Group (general contractor); Robin Amorello of Atmoscaper Design (kitchen designer); Gnome Landscapes, Design, Masonry, & Maintenance (landscapers); Tony Castro of Tony Castro & Company (historic restoration consultant); Randy Lane of Randy Lane Custom Plaster (plasterer)

It wasn’t difficult to put a team together to get the project started. The couple knew interior designer Denise Stringer through a mutual friend and Eric’s father, John, is a retired architect.

The restored cottage sits in front of the addition, which is clad in pre-stained cedar shingles. Maritime weather had taken a toll on the exterior of the original home over the years. The team removed the old asphalt roof and replaced it with western red-cedar shakes and a partial metal roof to guard against harsh winters. They also added copper gutters and trim and replaced rotted wood-framed windows with aluminum-clad wooden ones in the same architectural style. New wooden clapboards were coated with a solid tan latex house stain.

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

From the side, the addition and original house appear as two separate structures, but in fact they are connected by an enlarged kitchen and mudroom area.

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

The living room beams are original to the house but actually predate it: They were reclaimed from a local barn when the cottage was built. The previous homeowners had stained them a burgundy color, so restoring the supports became part of the renovation. Original pine floors run throughout the main living spaces and vary in width. Stringer says some planks are up to 10 inches wide. The sanded-plaster walls are also original to the home and were replicated in the addition. “We wanted to match the original sanded-plaster walls that were in the summer cottage, so that everything flowed and the transition was smooth between the old and new sections,” Stringer says.

Area rug: Mougalian Rugs; console table, benches, and woven-rush bergères: Fremarc Designs; pottery lamps: Abacus Gallery; pottery accent pieces: Ae Ceramics; three-legged table: Lorts; trim paint: Shelburne Buff by Benjamin Moore; upholstered chair and sofa: Lee Industries

The Best Neutral Colors for Any Room

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

Adjacent to the living room, the dining room shares the same water view and pared-down finishes. A custom chandelier above the alder table mixes an Early American vibe with contemporary design. Its leafy center references marsh grass and oyster shells dangle from the candlestick bases.

Area rug: Mougalian Rugs; chandelier: Lowcountry Originals; dining table and chairs: Fremarc Designs; pottery: Ae Ceramics; watercolor paintings: David DeRan

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

The soffit running above the island marks where the original kitchen ended. Now enlarged, the space segues into a sitting room in the addition. Salvaged beams, wide-plank wood floors, alder cabinetry, and an island finished in distressed black milk paint create a warm, cottagey vibe. The granite countertops on the periphery have been flamed and wire brushed to give them a rustic, matte appearance. Reclaimed barnwood was brought in from Pennsylvania for the sitting room’s ceiling.

Custom kitchen island: Phi Builders + Architects

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Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

The home sits on the northern part of the island and has near-panoramic water views. The master suite takes advantage of this vantage point with windows on three walls. The homeowners dismissed the idea of window treatments and Stringer kept the palette neutral to emphasize the view. The bedcover, custom-made in Stringer’s workroom, is a unique fabric composed of strings; the wool-and-silk-blend rug catches the light streaming into the space.

Area rug: Mougalian Rugs; bed: Woodland; chair and ottoman: Sherrill Furniture; nightstands: Century

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

The master bath features a chiseled-stone backsplash inspired by the nearby mountains that homeowner Tracy likes to climb with the family’s Labs. Cabinet pulls made of rocks are another nod to the outdoors.

Stone tile, countertop, and sinks: Cafe Pinta; trim paint: Utterly Beige by Sherwin-Williams

Photo by Jonathan Reece Photography, original photo on Houzz

Despite the beauty and craftsmanship of the renovated home, nothing beats the view from the rear porch off the living room.

Patio furniture: Kingsley Bate

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