Photos courtesy of the Lillie K. team at Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty
At The Sleeve House, the work of architect Adam Dayem, a modern structure stands out against a pastoral landscape of the Hudson Valley.
Property: The Sleeve House, Columbia County
The description: The Sleeve House sits – almost vulnerably – in a green expanse of lawn, reminiscent of Alexander Calder’s sculptures at the Storm King Art Center some 80km to the southwest. Beyond the austere façade, there is a delicate but intentional balance between public and private space.
This juxtaposition is created and maintained in part by the composition of the building: a large open space serves as a sleeve for the smaller private volume (hence the name). The atmospheric distinction is materially reinforced; in the larger space, let’s call it “the sleeve”, exposed concrete and charred wood are the main components, while the private space is composed of softer elements. It is a “best of both worlds” property, joining the austere brilliance of the Channel with a more intimate inner retreat.
The dramatic sleeve entrance leads into the living room, where a hanging wood-burning fireplace looms as a dominant feature, flanked by leather and wood lounge chairs. Climb the concrete staircase and sit at the dining room counter, from where one can easily converse with whoever is working hard in the kitchen. A single large sink marks the end of the dining room counter and the beginning of the kitchen counter.
Aside from the kitchen ceiling, which evokes the same linear rhythm as the exterior of the building, the surfaces are bare, inviting adornment. The concrete slabs that support the interior space also create a sense of intimacy between the living room and the kitchen, although the segregation is subverted by a small dining room, from which both the living room and the kitchen are accessible. .
The entire sleeve remains, in the words of the architect himself, “in the exterior volume after the interior has been inserted into it”. That is to say, if the public space is a shelter, it is also existentially linked to the outside world.
A large suspended staircase connects the sleeve to the heart of the residence. The interior space, although nested within the sleeve, does not feel isolated from the landscape. Instead, the interior is filled with natural light, with views of the Catskills framed by triple-glazed windows. During the warmer months, step out onto one of two private balconies and take in the stunning views of the 46-acre property.
For all the grandeur of The Sleeve House, its bedrooms and bathrooms are unassuming, allowing the style of its inhabitants to take precedence. If you’re worried about the many windows creating drafts in winter, you don’t need them: the heat and energy recovery ventilation system guarantees a temperate environment 365 days a year. All of the electricity in the house comes from a solar collection system, making it a really sustainable structure.
Outside, there’s no shortage of terrain to explore, from lush forest to manicured stretches of grass. The 2,500 square foot Sleeve House sits bare against Mother Nature with a weathered facade, evoking the image of farm buildings, barns and silos that define the valley landscape, but with a modern twist.
Ask for a price: $2,275,000
Points of sale: The Sleeve House was built to stand the test of time by master craftsmen using durable, yet long-lasting materials like Accoya wood. The house is offered turnkey, with high quality furnishings matching the architectural qualities of the building, in collaboration with home and lifestyle brand Hammertown Barn. The property is secluded, yet conveniently located 20 minutes from Hudson and Millerton and two hours from New York.
Crew: The Lillie K. team at Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty
Architect: Adam Dayem, current/office
Interior Styling: Julie Wallach
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