The future of folding glass walls is here (and before long, everywhere)
Nestled within a picturesque parcel of land in Queensland, Maryland a modern farmhouse gem stands out against its serene surroundings with minimal architectural features and folding glass doors that connect the indoors to the outdoors. Looking for the ideal year-round family getaway, the Baltimore family of four stumbled upon the 14-acre property and were immediately lured by the ethereal charm of vibrant green fields, surrounding woodland, and the sparkling waters of the Wye River. Despite the outdated building at its center, the homeowners decided to buy and make the property the ideal year-round getaway for family and friends. The renovation that came after would deliver a home that exceeded all expectations.
The Need for an Accommodating Gathering Space
After nearly three years of living in the existing house, a cramped “builder-grade” structure, the homeowners decided to transform their home into a new dwelling that could accommodate large guest groups and offer seamless access to the outdoor areas. Prior to the renovation, the pool was located off the basement level and required an inconvenient route through the lower level to access it. “We always wanted our house to be a gathering space,” said the homeowner in Home and Design Magazine. “We wanted everything to be centrally located around the pool and kitchen. That’s where everyone spends their time.” Leveraging the expertise of builder Raymond Gauthier of Lynbrook of Annapolis and David Mallon from Kimmel Studio Architects, the team ultimately decided to start from scratch and tear down the existing building.
Tearing Down and Building Anew
“We looked at how to change the chopped-up living areas and make the inside and outside spaces relate to one another and blur that boundary,” says architect David Mallon. “We needed to give them large communal spaces where they can gather and enjoy crabs, as well as private areas they can retreat to.” The result was a 14,000-square-foot modern farmhouse compound consisting of the main house and “a collection of smaller buildings” attached via glass corridors on either side. Dual kitchens that mirror each other encourage friendly family cook-offs, plenty of storage space, and quick access to the outdoors. In fact, symmetry is an ever-present motif throughout the home, with furniture and various design elements positioned in mirror-like arrangements or pairs.
Clean Lines and See-Through Walls Elevate Views
One of the main goals of the renovation was to optimize views to the landscape and enhance the home’s connection to its natural surroundings. This was accomplished with carefully placed fenestration and multiple NanaWall folding glass doors that link the main living spaces to the outdoors. The luscious woodland and flowing waters become the art and the main focal point against the muted color palette, white walls, and minimal interior design. “The views out of every part of the house are just perfect,” says the homeowner. “They nailed it.” The dining room features a lively aqua-colored floor and plenty of seating space for the entire family. Floor-to-ceiling windows adorned with divided lites complement the home’s farmhouse aesthetic while elevating the room with abundant daylight and framed outdoor views.
Double Take with Clad Folding Glass Doors
The eclectic dining room seamlessly spills into a four-season room then onto the indoor/outdoor pool, creating a tunnel-vision-like effect. Linking the dining room to the two areas is an aluminum clad folding glass wall that exposes the elegance of wood on one side and the durability of aluminum on the other while reinforcing the eminent duality of forms throughout the home. Black powder-coated exterior aluminum frames act as a transitional portal to the outdoors while white wood frames establish the interior spaces as is done with the rest of the fenestration. As an industry leader, Generation 4 Folding Glass Walls by NanaWall have reinvented the clad system with the slimmest aluminum clad frames on the market and quadruple laminated cross-grain wood.
Indoor/Outdoor Living Room
The four-season room offers the ultimate lounge spot with energy-efficient bifold patio doors that interconnect to the dining room, outdoor pool, and covered splash room. Five eight-foot-tall NanaWall SL60 folding glass doors and the clad system open with a simple push of a finger creating the indoor/outdoor effect on the fly. At night, or when the weather isn’t so nice, the walls close to create an enclosed lounge space with easy access to the covered indoor pool and hot tub which they call the “splash pool.” Outfitted with an outdoor kitchen, comfortable furniture, and bifold patio doors, these enclosed rooms offer the ideal year-round lounge spot for swimming and enjoying the changing landscape through the seasons.
A Flexible Design Solution for All Seasons
The NanaWall folding glass walls are aluminum framed systems designed for energy efficiency, ease of operation, and strong weather performance throughout the year. The narrow aluminum frames offer minimal sightlines and can be specified with swing panels for seamless indoor/outdoor transitions when the system is closed. The customizable black frames seamlessly blend with the rest of the home’s exterior fenestration and allow the family to enjoy the indoor pool even in the coldest winter.
The transformative renovation of this residence has presented the homeowners with the ideal home away from home where they can enjoy spending time with family and guests. The new spacious layout is perfect for hosting large groups at a time and makes the outdoor spaces easily accessible through the NanaWall folding glass doors. As flexible design solutions, NanaWall bifold patio doors are made with the customer’s needs in mind to ensure every design challenge is met, including systems that can withstand the grind of the seasons. “We’ve hosted a lot of family events here,” says the homeowner. “We have really been able to use the house to bring people together. Everyone just loves being here.” Learn how other home renovations leveraged NanaWall bifold patio doors to elevate interiors with the indoor/outdoor experience in our extensive project gallery!
What our Customers Have to Say
Querencia at Barton Creek
Essential to the Querencia facility, is a “cultural marriage between natural world and Austin.” The NanaWall installation in the Fitness and Wellness Center and Art Studio not only enhances but symbolizes this marriage.
Learn how TLCD Architecture designed this Building in Motion to accommodate rapid growth and change and to reflect the company culture of this growing financial institution.
"All other systems we considered were complicated, inflexible, and did not support our design goal of an integrated window wall that completely opened to the outdoors. The NanaWall system was easy to install and our students and teachers love to use it.”
— Adam Woltag, WRNS Studio, Architect