Annapolis Home Magazine May June 2023

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Vol. 14, No. 3 2023
WITH McHALE YOU CAN. Imagine… SINGLE SOURCE DE SIGN + BUILD McHALE LANDSCAPE DESIGN LANDSCAPE MASONRY CARPENTRY MAINTENANCE CONSTRUCTION LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE MAIN: 301.599.8300 EASTON: 410.770.9449 MCLEAN: 703.760.8600 ANNAPOLIS: 410.990.0894 CLARKSBURG: 301.972.9090 Winner of over 400 National & Local Awards of Excellence in Landscape Design, Installation, Craftsmanship & Maintenance
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If real estate agents charge about the same fee then why wouldn’t you hire the absolute best to represent you? Similar fee with different client outcomes doesn’t seem fair. The market has shifted and the stakes have been raised which make it paramount to hire the professional you deserve; the very best in their field. David Orso is celebrating his 20th year in real estate which has led to a curated system for maximum client outcomes for both sellers and buyers. Since 2013, David Orso has been the #1 agent in Anne Arundel County for total real estate sales. This unprecedented accomplishment is wholly due to his CEO level marketing and negotiation skills combined with his deep commitment to superior client outcomes. When asked his secret to year over year elite performance he stated, “When my clients win; I win. Always in that order.” This new market requires more than glamour shots and a couple good years during the real estate boom. Now is the time to evaluate your potential real estate representation closely and dig deep into their experience in challenging markets.

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2701 Willow Hill Road, Annapolis SOLD $7,750,000 – Buyer Represented
3240 Harness Creek Road, Annapolis SOLD $5,300,000 – Buyer Represented 932 Hilltop Drive, Arnold FOR SALE – $1,295,000 407 Woodland Estates Way, Millersville UNDER CONTRACT – $1,400,000
A ®2023 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An Independently owned and operated franchise of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of Columbia Insurance Company, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate. We are proud to be an equal employment opportunity employer.
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Set on 3.82 acres of private, beautifully landscaped grounds on protected Little Aberdeen Creek and steps from the water’s edge with 260 feet of water frontage, this property offers a Southwestern exposure providing picturesque year-round waterviews. Private pier will accommodate a 70 ft boat with 7-8 ft MLW, electric, water and 10,000 lb boat lift and floating dock for 2 jet skis. The grounds include a tennis court, waterside pool with a cabana pool house and full bath, hot tub and 100 foot waterside bluestone and covered porch. With over 6700 sq. ft. of finished living space including with 5 BRs, 5.5 BAs, high ceilings, wide plank oak floors, and water views from almost every room. Attached three car garage, heated workshop with water views plus detached 2 car garage with potting room and storage. Minutes to downtown historic Annapolis and easy access to Route 50. Offered at $8.995,000 (MDAA2056708)


A coveted residence with award winning grounds and lap pool located in Pendennis Mount offers a unique opportunity for any Buyer seeking a signature, spacious, elegant, shingle style home. This well maintained 5 Bedroom, 4 full, 2 half bath home was designed by Boggs and Partners Architects and built by Lundberg Builders in 2002. Boasting over 6500 sq. feet of living space, the interior is warm, well-proportioned, and beautifully detailed, easily accommodating large interior gatherings. Three sets of French Doors from the screened porch, dining room, and kitchen open the home to exquisite and magical exterior spaces designed by Oehme, van Sweden Landscape Architects. Offered at $2,750,000 (MDAA2056494)

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28 ANNAPOLIS HOME 30 Publishers’ Letter 31 Robert’s Picks 76 Beauty Room | Hello Summer! 90 Travel | Savannah 94 Home and Professional Services Guide 96 2023 Best Naval Architecture CONTENTS DEPARTMENTS ANNAPOLIS HOME THE FINEST ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN OF THE CHESAPEAKE REGION In this peaceful retreat, an interior designer minimizes clutter and typical nautical decor. 64 Monochromatic Tranquility 74 The High-Heeled Gardener Midnight Blossoms Plant night blooming flowers and experience nocturnal wonders. 82 An Heiress and Her Mansion Tucked away in northwest Washington, D.C. is an elegant mansion filled with 18th and 19th century treasures collected by heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post. 48 On the Cover: A view from “Ocean Sundial.” Photography by Anice Hoachlander. Tour this light-filled home whose unusual form is inspired by plain beach dune fencing and the sun's travel across the sky. Ocean Sundial: Architecture of Light

32 A Palladian Villa by the Sea

This home’s classic exterior hides a modern interior with exotic textile treatments and curving glass walls in dialog with the Atlantic Ocean.

Photography by William Abranowicz


Kymberly B. Taylor

Robert E. Haywood


Kymberly B. Taylor

Creative Director

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Senior Designer

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Account Executive, Advertising & Client Services

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William Abranowicz

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Annapolis Home is published bimonthly by Taylor Haywood Media, LLC. No part of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without express written consent of the publishers. Publishers disclaim any and all responsibility for omissions and errors.

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Welcome to the May issue of Annapolis Home Magazine! In Annapolis Home, our focus this month is on the beach with stories about impressive beach houses. The unique nature of each home's architecture and interior reveals a range of creative thinking and how infinite the span of the imagination can be. Wayne Goode has created a home whose classical façade and interior architecture “speak to the sea.” Inside the home, award-winning interior designer Mona Hajj has conceived rich multi-hued settings filled with exotic textiles, radiant tiles, and objects sourced from around the world, especially the Middle East and Europe. Free of nautical clichés, it is full of fresh ideas and daring combinations of color.

Our cover story spotlights one of the most unusual houses in Bethany Beach, designed by architect Donald Lococo. Lococo explains how he worked primarily with light to craft a home whose interior is much like a sundial or “clock” designed to draw light deep into the interior at certain times of the day and to cast intriguing sculptural shadows at others. Both homes are extraordinary, crafted and decorated by professionals at the height of their talents.

In these pages, you will discover our travel story on Savannah, GA, which, along with Charleston, SC, are two of the most beautiful cities in the country. Read about Savannah’s rich history and special offerings and why we find it a place to visit again and again.

We are proud to bring you these stories, for they fulfill our core mission: to bring into your homes and lives the work of exceptionally talented professionals who live and work right here in our region.

Enjoy! |

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Robert’s Picks


Head Over Heels at Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre

Annapolis Summer Garden opens its 2023 season of “Theatre under the Stars” with this musical comedy set to the music of the ’80s female rock band, The Go Go’s. The run opens Memorial Day weekend and continues through June 17, with evening performances Thursday through Sunday. For info and tickets, go to

Annapolis Pride Parade and Festival

More than 6,000 people attended the first-ever Annapolis Pride Parade in 2019, and the tradition has only grown in the years since then. This year’s celebration of the LGBTQ+ community in Annapolis is set for Saturday, June 3, with a parade beginning at noon and festivities continuing on West Street through 7:00 pm. Get details at

Juneteenth Parade

Celebrate freedom for all at the Annapolis Juneteenth Celebration, a commemoration of the day the last enslaved people were emancipated in 1865 in Galveston, Texas. The city will recognize this historic day on Saturday, June 17, beginning with a parade leaving Annapolis City Dock at noon and continuing with festivities afterward at Bates Athletic Complex. Get details at

Metro D.C.

Afrofuturism, National Museum of African American History and Culture, Smithsonian Institution

You’ll love learning more about Afrofuturist expression—the depiction of futuristic or sci-fi themes using Black history and popular culture— through this exhibit currently on display at the Smithsonian Institute. It even includes the Black Panther costume worn by Chadwick Boseman in the 2018 film. For more information, go to

Unstill Waters at the National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution

There’s still time to catch the exhibit “Unstill Waters: Contemporary Photography from India,” currently on display at the Smithsonian Institute through June 11. Incorporating work from five contemporary artists, the exhibit depicts landscapes of India as a way of exploring environmental and social issues. For more information, go to

Shear Madness at the Kennedy Center

Combining madcap humor with whodunnit murder mystery—and set in a hair salon populated by over-the-top characters—Shear Madness encourages audience participation in trying to crack the case. Join the 13.8 million people around the world who have already laughed their way through the show when you see it during its current run at the Kennedy Center through October 1. Get tickets at

Eastern Shore

Church Hill Theatre presents Matilda the Musical

Based on the story by Roald Dahl, this family-friendly musical which took West End and Broadway by storm comes to the stage at Church Hill Theatre on June 9 and runs through June 25 with evening and matinee performance options. Get tickets at

Cruises with the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum

Looking for a new way to see the local area by water? Hop aboard one of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s historic floating fleet and enjoy a two-hour private cruise, or join a 45-minute drop-in cruise along the Miles River aboard the 1920 Chesapeake buyboat Winnie Estelle. Get details and scheduling at

Have an event you would like us to consider for Robert’s Picks? Send all the details to

Robert Haywood is the author of Allan Kaprow and Claes Oldenburg: Art, Happenings, and Cultural Politics in the 1960s (Yale University Press). Thanks to Dylan Roche for his contributions to this column.

Vol. 14, No. 3 2023 31
A tributary of the Ganges, the Yamuna River is a sacred site for Hindus. This sequence of images documents figures silhouetted against the early morning sky as they hunt for coins left as offerings to the river’s goddess namesake. Photograph from exhibition at the National Museum of Asian Art. Yamuna Morning IV Atul Bhalla (b. 1964, India) 2007 Inkjet print on archival Hahnemüle paper

A Palladian Villa BY THE SEA

With its simple Palladian symmetry, this exterior is inspired by the casual classicism and vernacular turn-of-the-century wooden American seaside resort home. Its classical forms and quiet grandeur echo the spirit of Palladio’s famed Villa Cornaro and Villa Valmarana, says architect Wayne L. Good, FAIA.

Statuesque, with verandas overlooking nothing but sea, sand, and sky, the home has an intangible “calm” quality. This may be due to a rare synergy among Good, interior designer Mona Hajj, and builder Andrew G. Smith, vice president of Winchester Construction Company. These seasoned professionals are highly inspired—even driven—their different disciplines unified by the sea stretching before them.

In fact, when in search of forms and ideas for the home, Good visited the raw dunes early on to commune with the ocean. And perhaps, as an homage to its infinity, he conceived an interior architecture where body and mind could travel freely.

Upon entering, one faces a grand stair with open risers that reveal dunes through an oversized Diocletian window. At the top of the stairs is a hint of sky. As one ascends, the ocean gradually

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In the second floor living area, a serpentine glass wall echoes the undulating motion of the waves and is in “a constant dialogue with the Atlantic Ocean,” says the architect.

appears. Good explains it as “an elegantly choreographed sequence of arrival, anticipation, and ascent—allowing the house to unfold and ultimately reveal the infinite prospect of the Atlantic’s watery horizon.”

Soaring serpentine glass walls on the upper floors echo the sinuous beachline just below. “Floor-to-ceiling glass walls in the main living room and master suite gently undulate with curved operable glass in a constant dialog with the Atlantic shoreline,” says Good.

The architecture is filled with unexpected revelations—chimney caps shaped like small Parthenons and floors that seem to float. The interior design has its share of small epiphanies. Instead of the neutrals, driftwood, and pastels that come to mind when we think of the term “coastal,” Hajj chose exotic textiles draped casually across furnishings, walls, and floors. Each space gives the gift of discovery: small collections of tiles, pottery, and rare antiques from many countries, including Spain, Venice, Syria, and Palestine.

“They are private people and well-traveled, so they are open to ideas other than the typical beach house,” says Hajj. With so much color and captivating patterns freely combined, a spell-binding harmony is achieved, producing something unexpected: a deep calm. “That is what the clients wanted. You can be in a room and feel a sense of calm, a place to come home to after the city.”

Blues are incorporated into almost every space in ways that are both obvious and barely perceived. “Flights of blue” reference the ocean’s ever-changing surface. In some cases, color becomes texture. “We modulated the blues,” says Hajj. “I love the color of the water, and so do they; the idea was to have the base of the room in very pale blues and whites and then create texture with the deep blues and to keep it all connected with pieces of furniture.”

Dominating the living room is a fireplace composed of handmade Mudéjar tiles from the 17th and 18th centuries. The tiles are so blue that they seem to radiate from within. “I love them. I think they’re so soulful and beautiful. The clients travel a lot. They love things that are collected rather than formulaic or, you know, the typical cute things.”

Above the fireplace is a striking Ikat, a 19th-century Indonesian textile. A collection of Turkish pottery adorns the shelves. With textiles on the floor and walls and plush furnishings, the room is hushed and intimate. Combining beauty with utility, textiles throughout this home deserve special mention. Hajj grew up in the Middle East, where her family worked in the textile industry. “It is in our genes,” she reflects. Surely this explains her sixth sense for color, weight, and weave, and a spatial awareness that ensures each fabric finds its perfect place. “Each textile has a gift,” she explains.

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Abstracted octastyle Parthenon temple chimney caps are a playful nod to Palladio’s Greek and Roman influence.

Mindful vignettes in each space spotlight collections of pottery, textiles, tiles, or art.

The kitchen, with many shades of pale blue, is lacquered for easy cleanup. The light fixtures are from Syria.

She notes that when designing, scale and color are important to her, but in unexpected ways. “I don’t go by the rules of scale. You want to make the room inviting, but there is always something ‘off,’ which makes it more interesting. Scale is very important. It makes people feel comfortable, but sometimes it’s ok for things not to be perfect... to escape the prison of having to match.”

The small powder room is an example where Hajj manipulates scale and color. Blues converge dramatically; in this tight space, Eastern and European cultures coexist. The sink is an antique Turkish vessel atop an Empire English cabinet converted into a vanity. The mirror is a Venetian antique. A strange beauty rises from the depths of its oblique glass. “The mirror is so old; it’s almost the thought of the mirror that is important here,” says Hajj. “Maybe people don’t want to see themselves so clearly sometimes,” she jokes. “The client is very used to me doing things not expected.”

How does it happen? The compression of so many different visual elements and layers of textiles and even of time itself? There is no one simple answer. Says Hajj: “It’s all harmonious. I do a lot of it on-site. I don’t plan for it. Eighty percent is sort of planned with

a floor plan and lighting, but then 20 or 30 percent is not. It’s the flavor of the house. I bring it out during the installation, and I just play with it.”

The sense of play extends to the kitchen, which is a lacquered deep blue with open shelving and a casual ambiance. “When I get a project, I look at the whole. And again, blue was on my mind. It is all lacquered, so it’s very easily cleaned, and I wanted to make it accessible and inviting to the kids.” Just about everything is on display, with built-ins for cups and plates.

The light fixtures are from Syria, a country familiar to Hajj. It seems that all cultures are embraced in this home. “It is worldwide. That is what I love. Every culture has beautiful things. My clients like that because it reminds them of their travels.”

Upstairs, the primary bedroom is a study in blues. Just above the blue headboard hangs a painting of a lush bouquet. Two oversized chairs face each other in front of a large window where the sun streams in.

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Architecture and interior design cohere. Adjoining the bedroom is a small porch recessed under the beachside roof gable just outside the bedroom, where Hajj has placed a settee. Two Doric columns frame a niche that offers privacy and ocean views. Traveling from the porch through the bedroom, one follows the undulating “wave” glass wall leading to his and her dressing suites. It is much like a “walk on the beach” just below, says Good. He notes that plein air spaces are integral to the design and encourage “the feeling of living on the veranda.”

A prime example is the three-sided shuttered porch adjoining the main living area, where a round table layered with two simple textiles invites conversation over a meal. Installing 38 ten-foothigh shutters was one of Smith’s primary challenges. He explains that three European motors are embedded in each panel. One motor controls how the panel swings out to create privacy, another adjusts the louvers, and a third secures a storm latch.

Good’s overall design for the shutters borrows from the idea of Jefferson’s Venetian porches at Monticello and traditional Southern

louvered porches. Frameless glass railings create a visual connection to the beach and ocean. “When the shutters are fully open, toes all but touch the sand,” says Good, who adds that they are constructed from Acoya, a relatively new eco-product ideal for oceanfront living.

With the exception of the roof, the entire home is clad in Acoya, a sustainably-grown pine treated at the molecular level so it can no longer expand, contract, or, most importantly, rot. “For oceanfront homes exposed to raw elements, with storm winds exceeding 120 mph, this cladding means much lower maintenance,” says Smith, who has worked with Winchester for over 15 years. “I feel that with every project we do, there’s at least one thing that has never been done. And this definitely falls in line with that.” Along with the Acoya cladding, he mentions that other highly custom features include mini-Parthenon-like brass chimney caps, the finishing touches to Good’s vision for a classical seaside villa.

As one glances casually at the ornate chimney caps, columns, and trim and settles into rooms draped in sumptuous textiles,

Mona Hajj designed the headboards for this children’s room. Sewn onto the pillows are dresses made by underprivileged children in Palestine visited by Hajj during her frequent travels to the region.


In the primary bedroom, a sky-blue headboard is accentuated by textiles on the bed and floor.

everything seems harmonious, adhering to a kind of contemporary “golden mean.” A quiet nook on the porch is just the right size for a rocking chair and small table. “It is my favorite. A rocking chair with a glass. I love that. It is what it is all about,” says Hajj. The chair is from McKinnon and Harris, selected for its simple American style and natural beauty, she explains. “It is boldly simple. Can you imagine yourself just sitting there with a scone… with a drink? You don’t need all the interruptions; it’s just calm.”

Many beach homes have vast contemporary spaces designed for entertaining. In contrast, this home is about relaxation, with one room dissolving into the next. This spot on the porch is significant, adorned only by nature and a simple chair. Here, in the midst of heron flying low over the water, one can find shades of blue barely perceived, all a part of a design pageantry conjured by Hajj. Relaxing in quiet spaces and breezy verandas and glimpsing vistas through curving glass walls, one can listen to the sea and speak back. AH

ARCHITECT: Good Architecture, PC,, Annapolis, Maryland | INTERIOR DESIGN: Mona Hajj Interiors,, Baltimore, Maryland | BUILDER: Winchester Construction Co.,, Millersville, Maryland | SHUTTER SYSTEM: Sussex Construction | STAIRS: Saienni Stairs,, Newark, Delaware | LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT: Lila Fendrick Landscape Architects,, Chevy Chase, Maryland

For additional photos visit

A sinuous curving glass wall was designed by the architect to echo the contours of the shore line just below.
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EDGEWATER 3414 Glebe Drive UNDER CONTRACT | $729,900 WATERFRONT LOT Tilghman Island, MD UNDER CONTRACT | $360,000 DAVIDSONVILLE 2912 S Lake SOLD | $1,025,000 ANNAPOLIS 743 Annapolis Neck Road SOLD | $598,000 JOANNA DALTON REALTOR ® Multi-Million in Sales • Coldwell Banker International President’s Circle • Global Luxury Certified Serving Anne Arundel County and the Eastern Shore 410.980.8443 | JOANNA.DALTON@CBMOVE.COM 3 Church Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401 | 410.263.8686 ©2023 Coldwell Banker® Realty. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker® Realty fully supports the priciples of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Owned by a subsidiary of Realogy Broker Group LLC. Coldwell Banker, the Coldwell Banker logo, Coldwell Banker Global Luxury and the Coldwell Banker Global Luxury logo are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. HISTORIC DISTRICT 99 Compromise Street, Unit 3 ACTIVE | $2,299,000 PASADENA 1945 Orchard Point Road UNDER CONTRACT | $1,699,000 JOANNA DALTON REALTOR ®
Vincent Greene Architects Tim Lee Photography
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OCEAN SUNDIAL Architecture of Light

This home’s exterior, composed of vertical “fins” made of shou sugi ban, is inspired by dune fencing. As the sun moves across the sky, they create ever-shifting shadows throughout the interior.


everything in architect Donald Lococo’s “Ocean Sundial” stands against the conventional beach house architecture that line the Delaware and Maryland beaches.

Take the street-side entry of the typical oceanfront home, where you see seemingly endless versions of gable roof lines, a deck of some variety, standard windows that look out onto the street and ocean, and the occasional dramatic exterior staircase leading to a porch and front door. Ocean Sundial does not conform to any of these conventions.

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When one turns onto the street of this oceanfront home, it's hard not to gasp at its distinctive form. The street-side façade is formed of elegant bands, or ‘fins’ as Lococo calls them. Aligned horizontally, they possess a musical rhythm in their linear repetition.

The grayish fins are a type called Shou Sugi Ban. In this Japanese technique, each plank is charred and wire-brushed—a process that reveals long grain patterns and textures. The Shou Sugi Ban fins are resistant to insects and moisture damage, without harmful chemicals that leach into the environment. The fins were constructed in four full height segments and lifted upright into place. This feat of custom building is the work of Shay Gallo and his team at Shay Gallo Construction.

Rather than following familiar styles of beach architecture, this façade of fins draws inspiration—unexpectedly— from a built form installed to protect the beach: dune fencing. Beyond serving as a barrier, dune fencing is critical in limiting erosion and fostering animal and plant life.

Without being a wall, the fins minimize views from the interior of the mostly hohum architecture along the street. Plus, as Lococo points out, we don’t drive hours and hours to look at the street. We travel to experience an expansive body of salt water and forceful waves that never stop and to look out toward the horizon’s singular line that stretches across the sea.

The street-side front entry is unlike the predictable grand exterior stairs of beach house architecture. This entry off to the right side is discreet and almost disguised as if to preserve an exterior modesty and to build anticipation with a small, covered porch leading to the front door. Upon opening the front door, one is greeted by a small foyer and interior stair that immediately allow one to experience the effects of light and shadow. Once inside, your focus turns to the three-story stair shaft and outward to panoramic views of ocean.

A solid wall would have blocked the sunlight, but the fins allow the sun to flood the interior with light. And light brings with it shadows—shadows that slowly move across the floor, the stairs, and other objects, creating a formal play of light and shade.

“[T]he house is about the bouncing and shimmering of light—what reflects light, what absorbs light, what's chalky to light, and how light skims along some of the ceilings and how shadows move within it.”
- Donald Lococo

The exterior fins that cover the windows cast crisp shadows upon the interior’s white walls.

The HVAC system and vents are cleverly embedded into the bridge-like ceiling.

Lococo followed the strict technical requirements of beachfront architecture but designed this house using light as a tool. The house is built with enduring materials such as wood, glass, and steel, but it is this immaterial element of light that has its own temporal flow, continuously changing the feel, temperature, and look of the home throughout the day.

Lococo, in fact, calls light “the driver”. He studied the sun’s patterns and meticulously calculated its movements and their effects on the interior. He and his team went so far as to stay overnight in the open air when there was just a platform so he could experience the sun rising in the morning. “I wanted to see if it really worked. So even way before the house windows were in, we experienced that level, which I just really, really loved,” he explains.

Lococo notes, for example, that at 10:00 a.m. the sun penetrates the central interior stair shaft, “dissipating light and warming remote areas of the home, while bringing the morning’s longest rays of light into the core of the home.”

The sweeping oceanfront sliding glass doors and windows allow light to inundate the interior. According to Nick Neidig of Quality Window and Door, Lococo wanted “three panel sliding doors, where the two end panels operate and slide into the center,” a custom design Weather Shield was able to provide. All this glass allows for a house that, Lococo says, “is about the bouncing and shimmering of light—what reflects light, what absorbs light, what's chalky to light, and how light skims along some of the ceilings and how shadows moved within it.” Even the flooring selection was based on the effects of light. A chalky wood floor surface, he explains, became “really important” because, by contrast, “chalky makes shimmering things shimmer more.”

Vol. 14, No. 3 2023 55
The house is built with enduring materials such as wood, glass, and steel, but it is the immaterial element of light that enlivens the spaces.

The home is designed in such a way that nothing can distract from the light effects and ocean views. Lococo’s team also planned the interior design and kept the furnishings comfortable and modest with mostly neutral tones. Even the kitchen is minimalist but functional. He points out that the kitchen is “really not about cabinetry,” so even the knobs, with their streamlined forms, are minimalist. This feature is employed throughout the home with forms such as the knobs and the suspended tubular staircase lights that echo the exterior fins and the linear shadows they create.

A home of this distinction required highly sophisticated homeowners who trusted a seasoned and immensely creative architect. The homeowners are doctors, and this is the second home Lococo has designed for them, although the first home in metro D.C. is completely different from the beach home.

The style of this home is modern, but today that characterization can mean almost anything when the design possesses minimal ornamentation and geometric forms. With this beach home, one thing modern does not mean is a box. Says Lococo: “I don't make a box and put people in it. And that's what I try to teach, too. I'm almost in a 3D space frame. [I] have people create relationships and then drop walls and things around where they are. The walls land around [those] relationships to foster them,” he adds.

In this case, the relationships start with a family of five plus an extended family. Nine beds and a pull-out couch allow for fourteen guests to sleep in this somewhat modest 3,230-square-foot home.

From the ocean side, the home appears like a series of stacked cubicles with frontal glass doors and windows instead of walls. However, the home has a sawtooth form, most evident from the sides, which Lococo says was “used to meet the 1:4 roof pitch requirement.” The three-part sloped roof allows the sun to enter and facilitates

The children’s bedroom has a sleeping loft and generous custom platform beds.

The primary bathroom, in watery hues of blue-green, has ocean views to ensure a constant connection with the sea.

From the ocean side, the home appears like a series of stacked cubicles with frontal glass doors and windows instead of walls.

water drainage, with the tallest slope creating the ceiling for the third-level kitchen, dining, and living areas. This floor offers dramatic ocean views from the room’s entire width and from the deck, where you are hypnotized by the repetitive crash of waves.

There are many modern beachfront homes, although their quality is by no means of equal value. It’s a rare modern home that rises to this level of originality and magnificence, where architecture unquestionably asserts itself as an art. Ocean Sundial is also an exceptional home in that it sets a new, higher standard for architecture along the Delaware and Maryland beaches.

For additional photos visit

The architect’s rendering reveals the sun’s precise movement through the house.

ARCHITECTURE & INTERIOR DESIGN: Donald Lococo Architects,, Washington, D.C. | CONTRACTOR: Shay Gallo, Shay Gallo Construction,, Bishopville, Maryland | STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: David Linton, Linton Engineering, lintonengineering. com, Potomac Falls, Virginia | DOOR AND WINDOWS: Nick Neidig, Quality Window & Door, qwdinc. com, Merrifield, Virginia | CUSTOM CABINETRY: Farlow Taylor Woodworks, Selbyville, Delaware | COUNTERTOP: In Home Stone, Caesarstone Airy Concrete,, Annapolis, Maryland

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At Right: This Rehoboth house sits only a few blocks inland from the beach. This Photo: Long light fixtures accentuate the height of the ceiling.



Escaping to the beach means peace and tranquility. It means simplicity. It means minimal effort and lots of relaxation. All of these concepts were at the forefront of Christopher Boutlier’s vision as he approached the interior design of a secondary home in Rehoboth Beach for a family from Washington, D.C.

“The primary idea behind it was to create a relaxing beach house that didn’t feel like a beach house,” he says. “I think a lot of times, people buy beach houses and then start overly decorating them to say, ‘Hey, you’re at the beach.’” As far as Boutlier is concerned, such coastal or nautical décor isn’t just cliché; it’s unnecessary. “You know you’re at the beach because you’re there,” he says.

Instead, Boutlier aimed to create something that could serve as a retreat away from the hectic day-to-day life for a family that just wants to relax. “We really wanted to embody that spirit in the color palette and make sure things were simple and calm,” he says.

There’s also a practical side to the simple, modern aesthetic—it minimizes the clutter, so there’s less need to spend a day cleaning upon arrival or departure. Even though the home is a few blocks inland from the beach itself, Boutlier admits it’s inevitable that sand

Vol. 14, No. 3 2023 65

Sparing use of wood, such as on the stairs, gives warmth to the monochromatic color palette.

will find its way in, making lots of furniture or delicate fabrics impractical. “You want a space that is clean, sparse even—but not so much that it’s uncomfortable,” he says.

The redesign of the existing house, spearheaded by Mike Zorzi of Zorzi Creations, involved stripping it all down to the drywall and removing everything from the kitchen appliances to the floor and the windows. The layout of the rooms remained the same, but everything else served as a blank potential for plenty of creative design.

Boutlier used a primarily monochromatic color scheme throughout the house—lots of cool grays against simple black and white accents. Shades range from silvery tones to a slightly warmer gray (resembling lavender) to deep charcoal. “The goal with the color palette was to keep everything calm and monochromatic,” Boutlier says. The gray plays nicely off two big expansive windows that look out onto abundant greenery during the summer and spring. “Gray is always a nice complement to green,” Boutlier explains.

In addition to the natural greenery, the space draws warmth from what Boutlier describes as a “delicate balance” of wood pieces made by David Iatesta. The wood pops against the black, white, and gray, creating layers and depth. The kitchen’s design, as envisioned by Julia Jensen of Boffi Georgetown, offers subtle character through a mix of materials and finishes. Though appearing a simple white from far away, the cabinets are a light wood whitewashed with paint, revealing texture when viewed up close. The kitchen’s island boasts a light oak finish, and the marble countertops give warmth to the open space.

Jensen explains the layout of the kitchen changed slightly with the removal of an exterior door, originally to one side of the refrigerator. Removing the door and flanking the cooking area with tall cabinets brings symmetry to the kitchen, creating an overall more sophisticated look. “It’s a totally different kind of balanced value to the overall design, and it gave them a bit more storage space,” Jensen says.

Vol. 14, No. 3 2023 67
Minimalism makes for a beach house that's both tranquil and practical.

All the furniture throughout the home, such as the sofas by Holly Hunt, is upholstered with performancebased fabrics. Boutlier explains this offers the durability and cleanability of outdoor furniture with the sophisticated aesthetic of indoor furniture—perfect for a beach house.

Various hanging light fixtures add a final layer of interest, highlighting the volume of space while also serving as decorative sculptures. For instance, the long black and brass stems of the Lindsey Adelman pendant lights hanging over the kitchen island draw attention to the height of the ceiling without being distracting.

Boutlier’s design indeed proves that a beach house doesn’t need an ocean-blue color scheme and rattan to achieve the tranquility a homeowner seeks from the shore. In this case, modern simplicity and a monochromatic color palette capture the right mood while delivering practicality.

INTERIOR DESIGN: Christopher Boutlier Interior Design & Art Consultancy,, Washington, D.C. | KITCHEN & BATHROOM DESIGN: Julia Jensen, Boffi Georgetown,, Washington, D.C. |

CONTRACTOR: Zorzi Creations,, Lewes, Delaware

For additional photos visit

A quiet cabaña has just enough room for the essentials: tables and a comfortable settee.

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Queen of the Night is a stunning orchid cactus that in Southern Mexico grows on trees. It is extraordinary as the flowers bloom only once a year, in the evening, for about 12 hours. As a houseplant, it is easy to grow and prefers indirect sun. Water every two weeks and watch closely for the elegant buds to emerge. Plan a midnight “watch party,” as it will unfurl very slowly right before your eyes.


High-Heeled Gardener



The other day, I was sitting on my back porch, staring at the bees clustered around the iris in full bloom in my garden. Three bees, in particular, rose up and hovered six inches or so from my eyes. Over the next few minutes, their buzzing became louder, just short of menacing. I think one made eye contact with me, which was particularly unsettling. I felt, also, strangely exhausted by their activity. As evening approached, I looked forward to a little peace and quiet. After all, gardens are mainly at their best and busiest during the day. But then I thought about flowers that bloomed at night and realized a whole new cycle of activity begins with the absence of the sun.

Things are quieter, for there are surprisingly few nighttime pollinators. They include certain moths, bats, and beetles. Yet, night-blooming flowers have an intensity all their own. They respond to the light from the moon and stars, and some bloom only during a full moon. Because nocturnal pollinators must find them in the dark, they must blossom quickly and extravagantly, right before our eyes. Draw close and inhale. Often, they emit a potent fragrance, the better to seduce their winged visitors. For example, before the moonflower blossom peaks, the buds emit a strong perfume. Two hours later, this fragrance becomes highly unpleasant. Researchers note that the chemical compounds responsible for the odor are benzyl alcohol, benzyl benzoate, and benzyl salicylate—all chemicals that attract the night-active hawkmoth pollinator.

There is much going on under the cover of darkness. In a recent article in the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, Renee M. Borges notes that producing flowers is a “water-demanding process.” Millions of years ago, some plants, to avoid extinction,

began to bloom at night to prevent excessive water loss through evapotranspiration, a process during which plants release water vapor from their leaves at the same time that water evaporates from the soil.

Some flowers became “thermogenic”—capable of pro-ducing “an unusually large amount of heat during the floral stages.” This is intoxicating and enticing to some nocturnal insect pollinators. Insects that visit the floral chamber, such as the scarab beetle, may linger to absorb energy before moving on. Thermogenic nocturnal flowers include the Sacred Lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) and the Coconut Magnolia (Magnolia coco).

With all of this new information in mind, my plan for the summer is to grow night flowers and stroll to the garden to better appreciate them. I will be doing two important things: avoiding the bees that seem to have it in for me and showing respect for the powers of the night. I will take a few moments to wonder anew at the moon’s forces that influence not just the tides, but the flowers that blossom in the darkness.



Queen of the Night Epiphyllum oxypetalum

Egyptian White Water Lily Nymphaea lotus L.

Moonflower Ipomoea alba

Devil’s Trumpet Datura

Angel’s Trumpet Brugmansia

‘Casa Blanca’ Lily Lilium

Evening Stock Matthiola longipetala

Night-Blooming Jasmine Cestrum nocturnum

Hello Summer!

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An Heiress


Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens is the former home of Marjorie Merriweather Post: socialite, daughter of the Post Cereal magnate, wife of an ambassador, businesswoman—and inveterate collector and philanthropist.

As with many museums and galleries, revisiting often sparks a renewed appreciation. In addition to the building itself—and the beautifully designed gardens surrounding it—the mansion houses an extensive collection of 18th- and 19th-century European fine and decorative art, carefully acquired throughout the life of its owner, Marjorie Merriweather Post.

The mansion itself is grand, and the collections housed in it are breathtaking in their beauty and scope. A one-hour tour affords but a glimpse of their vast variety. But noting the details helps bring the grandeur into manageable focus. For instance, consider the size of the rock crystal drops on the chandelier above the foyer, the stunningly intense shades of blue in the Sèvres porcelain, the

subtle colors in the tapestries in the French drawing room, and the multitude of gems in the jewels on display throughout the house. To experience the exquisite beauty of the furniture and appointments at Hillwood is to begin to appreciate Post’s discerning eye and her desire to create a museum where others could share her fascination with the artistry of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Her father was the earliest influence on her collecting. However, it was through dealers here and abroad that her taste was honed as her acquisition of furniture, tapestries, and porcelain increased—a passion that continued with each new home. She began acquiring French tapestries in 1919, then antique furniture. Working with some of the best-known designers and dealers played a significant role in her knowledge and appreciation of 18th- and 19th-century art and cultural treasures as her collection continued to grow.

After inheriting $250 million at age 27 from her father, Charles William Post, owner of Postum Cereal Company, Post built


The museum contains Mrs. Post’s considerable portrait collection, which includes Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra, as well as Marie Antoinette of France and Catherine the Great of Russia.

The French Drawing Room is resplendent with Beauvais tapestries, Sèvres porcelain, glistening gold boxes, and Gobelin tapestryupholstered chairs.

Mar-a-Lago between 1924 and 1927 at the cost of $7 million. She furnished it with unusual and intriguing pieces, including a Spanish rug dating to the 1500s and the stone-inlaid dining table which seats 30 and weighs 2,000 pounds. The table now resides at Hillwood, where the dining room floor had to be shored up to accommodate its weight.

In 1936, while living in Moscow as the wife of Joseph Davies, the US ambassador to the Soviet Union, she purchased national treasures formerly owned by the Russian aristocracy and ecclesiastical vessels and garments—items being sold to fund the industrial revolution. Among them were gem-encrusted gold chalices and other sacred vessels from Moscow and St. Petersburg that had been washed in silver to disguise the fact that they were gold and, therefore, likely to be melted down for the military treasury.

While in Moscow, she became fascinated with Russian icons, many of which were gold-framed and studded with gems. Fortunate to be there when they were being sold off at a pittance, she purchased several, as well as various heavily-embroidered religious vestments.

According to Wilfried Zeisler, Deputy Director and Chief Curator at Hillwood, “These religious objects were first to be sold by the Soviet authorities. By acquiring them, Post preserved them for future generations to enjoy, as she did for many other works now in our collection.”

Her life in Europe ended in 1939 when war broke out, but that did not dampen her enthusiasm for collecting. From amassing Fabergé eggs of all sizes, many of which are displayed in the Icon Room on the second floor of Hillwood, it was a natural transition to small gold, silver, enameled, and bejeweled treasures: pocket and wrist watches, enamel pendants, snuff boxes in various sizes, presentation boxes, and small colorful figurines.

After her divorce from Davies in 1955, Post acquired Hillwood on 25 acres of parkland in northwest Washington and launched a two-year renovation of the estate. She began displaying the collections at Hillwood in 1957 as an educational resource and opened the museum to the public in 1977.

A fine hostess, Marjorie Merriweather Post often set her dining tables with treasured French porcelain, Russian crystal, and silver and gold flatware and centerpieces.


“She always intended that her acquisitions should be on view to the public and appreciated for what they were: the expression of the talents of some of the most talented artists of cultures and techniques that were centuries old.”

Personally, she admired strong women, among them Marie Antoinette of France and Catherine the Great of Russia. So when she could, Post collected portraits of these women as well as small trinkets and jewelry believed to have been owned by them. Acquiring those portraits led to a more extensive collection, which includes Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra.

She was interested in the story behind her acquisitions, too. A roll-top desk once belonging to Marie Antoinette resided in her bedroom, and her collection of jewels and jewelry includes not only pieces she chose for their sheer beauty but also gem-encrusted items of historic significance. Notable among them is the 1894 nuptial crown of Nicholas and Alexandra, designed in silver and velvet with 1,535 diamonds.

Her collection of apparel includes Russian and French reception and evening gowns from the early 20th century as well as some of her own more cherished ensembles.

A gracious hostess, she received her guests in a home whose walls were graced with beautiful art and fed them at dining tables set with treasured French porcelain, Russian crystal, and silver and gold flatware and centerpieces.

About working at Hillwood, Zeisler said, “I like the energy of the place. There is always something new to see or discover at Hillwood, be it an exhibition, seasonal change in the gardens, or a new setting on the tables…. All the rotations we do in the museum are the result of the constant study of the collection of about 20,000 various works. The collection is so diverse that there is always a new piece that is of interest and that generates a new exhibition’s concept or an idea for a new display.”

New displays have recently opened at Hillwood and will continue through the spring. See the sidebar below for specifics and check their website for additional information.

For additional photos visit


In-person visitors can enjoy Hillwood’s beauty and serenity with 13 acres of formal gardens open for strolling. Complete your visit with freshly made meals from Merriweather Café. Virtual visitors can access live events for the whole family at


Determined Women: Collectors, Artists, and Designers at Hillwood Saturday, February 18, 2023 to Sunday, June 18, 2023

Hillwood founder Marjorie Merriweather Post was an astute business executive, discerning collector, and committed philanthropist. As a strong woman in a maledominated world, she greatly admired her predecessors: influential women who ran countries, inspired reforms, supported culture, and created art and design. This special exhibition will explore the innovative and intrepid collectors, artists, and designers represented in Hillwood’s collection—those who set an example for Post and future women by making a place for themselves and overcoming obstacles through their determination to succeed. | Please register at

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Travel Savannah

Live oak trees create a canopy over 22 city blocks in the historic district.

Asdappled light filters down through massive branches of live oak trees, each draped in a gauze of Spanish moss, the southern charm of Savannah, Georgia, beckons us to visit. They call her the Hostess City of the South, and one needn’t go far to understand what that means. Whether you love history, architecture, the arts, or dining out, you’ll find plenty to do without having to go very far or try very hard. From the banks of the Savannah River to garden squares and public parks, the whole town seems ready to entertain you and show you a good time.

What is strikingly evident is the beauty of Savannah. Here you will find urban planning at its finest. James Oglethorpe (1696-1785), a British envoy of King George II, created the master plan for Savannah in 1733. When Oglethorpe designed Savannah with its regular grid of streets, public parks, and houses, he could not have

imagined the unique garden atmosphere that the city has become in our time.

Live oak trees create a canopy over 22 city blocks in the historic district. Shade seems to be infinite. Because the blocks between the parks are short, walking is a pleasure. Strolling is delightful. You want to walk. It’s just so beautiful. This is a living, breathing antebellum city. Architectural gems line the streets. And people live in these houses! There are always places to sit and rest. It is not uncommon to see tour groups wandering about at all times of the day and night, some seeking paranormal activity.

There are many ways to see Savannah: walking tours, trolley tours, horse-drawn buggy tours, ghost tours, bicycle tours, SEGWAY tours, a Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil tour—even a dogwalking tour! Whatever your interests are, there is a tour for you.

James Oglethorpe, a British envoy of King George II, created the master plan for Savannah in 1733. Savannah is a haven of historical architecture and includes Georgian, Federal, Gothic Revival, and Greek Revival styles.

Savannah is very pet friendly. Dogs are everywhere, and ambling about with a dog is a very natural activity. Many hotels allow pets. Two of the hotels I visited even offered my dog a complimentary bag of treats. Many restaurants provide lots of outdoor seating, so dining out with Fido is not a problem.

Savannah is renowned for its culinary tradition. Among the many quality restaurants, one classic establishment for regional cuisine is The Crystal Beer Parlor, where you will find such homegrown dishes as shrimp and grits, fried green tomatoes, and peach cobbler. For more upscale dining, The Grey is the home of James Beard awardwinning chef de cuisine Mashama Bailey. While you may need to make a reservation weeks in advance, The Grey saves limited open seating on a first-come, first-served basis when the restaurant opens at 5:00 p.m. (Unreserved seating may also be available after 8:00 p.m.) Housed in a beautifully refurbished Greyhound Bus Terminal, the menu at The Grey riffs quintessential southern cuisine with modern sensibilities. The cocktails are excellent.

And speaking of cocktails, check out Savoy Society at 102 E. Liberty Street with its chic bar scene, where the peoplewatching is just as delicious as the libations and the food. Incidentally, Savannah has an open carry law, so you can have your drink and stroll with it, too.

Savannah is the confluence of several historically significant events. When Oglethorpe first established the town, Georgia became the last of the thirteen original colonies, and slavery was banned in the charter. Ironically, once the thirteen colonies secured their freedom from British rule, slavery was allowed. In 1864, when Union General William Tecumseh Sherman made his famous March to the Sea, burning southern towns in his wake (famously including Atlanta), he spared Savannah from his wrath and gave the city to President Abraham Lincoln for a Christmas present. The beauty of the city has enchanted multitudes for decades.

The influence of The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) is evident throughout the city. Original art is everywhere: in the shops, restaurants, cafés, and on the sides of buildings. This embellishment has the added effect of a lovely adornment, like so much jewelry. People seem to make the extra effort to make this city beautiful. Design excellence reigns.

Perhaps you will find yourself on the Savannah riverfront one evening as the full moon rises. And, if you’re lucky, strains of Moon River, written by Savannah native son Johnny Mercer, waft through your consciousness. It’s deservedly the sort of romantic, wistful soundtrack to this town that defies urbanization: Waitin’ ’round the bend… My Huckleberry friend… Moon River and me.








THE MARSHALL HOUSE | This hotel is a perennial favorite with travelers.

BELLWETHER HOUSE | Luxury Bed and Breakfast. Afternoon tea.

THE DESOTO | Centrally located, large hotel with quiet rooms.

PERRY LANE HOTEL | Boutique hotel with a rooftop pool.

JW MARRIOTT PLANT RIVERSIDE DISTRICT | Waterfront. The lobby has an astonishing collection of giant crystals and a life-sized chrome dinosaur skeleton.

THE ALIDA | Urbane and mod-ish.


• Read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, written by John Berendt (1994). This work of nonfiction, with its local characters and a true crime story, absolutely enhances the Savannah experience.

• A car is superfluous. Savannah is a very walkable city!

• Take a tour. Check out the Visit Savanah website for a list of the various tours available:

• The Visit Savannah website is also a terrific resource for tips on current activities. A recent visit to the site yielded information for the Savannah Music Festival, where we had a chance to see jazz great Terrence Blanchard.

• While Savannah is in the South, it can get chilly or very hot. You will want to spend a lot of time outdoors, so pack accordingly, including comfortable walking shoes and season-appropriate clothing.

• For Civil War buffs, Fort Pulaski is a must to see. Here the Union Army struck down Confederate brick fortifications with a new weapon, the rifled cannon.

• Savannah is rich with both Revolutionary War and Civil War history. If these streets could talk, what a tale they could tell! To learn more go to AH



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Nugent Design Build pg. 63

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Maryland Shower Enclosures pg. 95 | 410.626.1222

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California Closets pg. 43 410.247.8088 |

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Quality Window & Door pg. 24 | 877.542.8481

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Bay Pile Driving pg. 61 410.879.3121 or 888.886.1213

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Green & Bean Boutique pg. 95

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Gibson Island Corporation Real Estate pg. 89 301.351.1319 |

Joanna Dalton of Coldwell Banker Realty pg. 44 c. 410.980.8443 | o. 410.263.8686

Michele Deckman of The Tower Team, TTR|Sotheby’s International Realty pg. 69 c.410.353.3703 | o. 410.280.5600

Rosemont Real Estate pg. 63 703.628.1386 |

Snyder Bradshaw Group of Monument Sotheby’s International Realty pg. 20 | o. 443.906.3848 d. 410.216.0018 |


Maddox Audio Video Design

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2023 Best Naval Architecture, Sailing Yachts: My Song

Awarded Best Naval Architecture, Sailing Yachts, by Boat International, the 24.7M My Song is a high-performance racer by Nautor Swan. The judges were impressed with new developments in naval architecture by Juan Kouyoumdjian. This included considerable hydrodynamics work, not just on the hull but also on the canting keel, pivoting centre board and twin rudders with adjustable toe-in angles.

The bowsprit is retractable when on the starting line and while sailing upwind in a tight fleet, and then extends to hoist a big kite for downwind performance.

LENGTH: 24.7m

NAVAL ARCHITECT: Juan Kouyoumdjian


Nautor Swan/Persico Marine

Sitting Pretty. | 410.280.8850