The future of folding glass walls is here (and before long, everywhere)
Northport adjoins a small harbor on the Long Island sound. Similar to other North Shore towns, the topography is dramatic: Steep hills and protected marshland and woods ensure the enclave remains secluded – and pretty.
Not surprisingly, many famous artists, athletes, musicians and writers populate this pint-sized village, just 50 miles east of Manhattan. A recent addition to this prestigious community is Tom Winter Architecture’s spectacular residence for Laura and Anthony Burke. The highlight of this modern house is an indoor/outdoor pool with a dramatic NanaWall system.
NanaWall was the best solution for a conditioned indoor/outdoor space for numerous reasons. Northport, like most northeastern communities, has vast weather fluctuations. The homeowners wanted to use the pool year ‘round, but still wanted to be connected to their gorgeous environs.
The backyard slopes down to the Northport harbor, says Tom Winter, principal of his namesake firm, noting that the NanaWall system “surrounds the pool house on three sides, unfolding into a dedicated closet in the back wall,” he says. “The ceiling was glass, so whether opened or closed, the Burkes would feel like they were completely outside.”
Winter did not consider other operable glass wall products. “Being an architect with a German background, I appreciate NanaWall System's perfectly and precisely engineered operable doors. We chose NanaWalls at the North Shore residence because they’re aesthetically appealing with thin frames, high clear openings and invisible locking hardware,” he continues. “The doors retract completely into a closet, leaving an entirely unobstructed opening.”
“Being an architect with a German background, I appreciate NanaWall Systems' perfectly and precisely engineered operable doors."
Virtually Unlimited Number of Panels
More than that, says Winter, “The competition was not able to do the continuous, 85-foot opening that wraps three sides of the pool.”
The architect adds that he was “particularly happy” with the metallic frame finish, which “integrates seamlessly into the exposed steel structure. NanaWall Systems provided a great engineering service and all the technical solutions making us extremely satisfied customers, he sums up. “We will always use them for large openings!”
The pool house is an integral part of a residence that Tom Winter Architecture describes as “a composition of red wooden volumes on a gray brick base.” The pool house has gray anodized steel framing, and so too does the HSW60 Aluminum Framed Single Track Sliding System. The colors match the brick on the house, too.
The parallel between indoor and outdoor space is additionally highlighted by a mortared slate patio that traverses in and around the pool house. The sea-green slate was treated with flame to make a dramatic texture.
Winters positioned all the ducts along the perimeter of the rectangular pool house to make certain the NanaWall system and other glass would not fog up during the winter. The pool floor is also heated to ensure the conditioned space remains cozy.
Performance Through Hurricane Sandy
One of the many reasons Winter loves NanaWall is that the product allowed him so many practical and aesthetic options. He was able to use very thin panels, yet they are extremely weather resistant; the thin glass withstood Hurricane Sandy’s onslaught, he reports. In addition, NanaWall offered Winter different width options, which was essential so that his design “would not become boring ” .
The intricacy of the design is dazzling. The 85-foot continuous wall folds back into a dedicated closet, which is the width of a normal door opening. In addition, the three-sided wall maneuvers around two support columns. Winter believes NanaWall’s “precision engineering sets it apart from other competitors.”
NanaWall participated with the shop drawing phase, which helped Winter to have “100-percent faith in their product.” It also helped to create an indoor/outdoor space that shelters the Burkes and their pool furniture, but also provides a sublime experience. Laura Burke agrees, stating: “It is fabulous. We have had no problems with the wall in five years. It is so easy to retract; in fact, it takes my son and me 20 minutes to do this. It has been a home run for us!”