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THE TETRAULT’S NEW HOME HONORS TRADITION, YET PROVIDES CUTTING-EDGE PROTECTION FROM STORM WEATHER

IN WITH THE NEW

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The Tetrault’s new home is nestled among majestic oak trees; Croom Construction took special care to preserve the four that needed to be moved in order to accommodate the residential footprint.


In With The New THE TETRAULT’S NEW HOME HONORS TRADITION, YET PROVIDES CUTTING-EDGE PROTECTION FROM STORM WEATHER IT’S NOT WHAT YOU LOOK AT, BUT WHAT YOU SEE ­- THOREAU BY ANN TAYLOR • PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANA HOFF


Architect Harry Howle designed the 5,000 squarefoot residence that features a summer porch that looks out to the pool and golf course.

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t’s hard to believe almost 50 years have passed

As David Lyons, vice president of Croom Construction

since E. Llwyd Ecclestone Sr. first laid eyes on the

explains, “This year marks the 25th anniversary of

jungle-like 1,600-plus acres stretching between the

Hurricane Andrew, a category five hurricane that caused

Atlantic Ocean and Intracoastal Waterway in Indian River

tremendous damage to South Florida. As a result of the

Shores. It was just what the residential developer had been

storm surge and flooding, FEMA (Federal Emergency

looking for.

Management Agency) increased flood elevations. They’ve

Ecclestone’s vision was to create a private, family-orient-

increased them even more in the years since, which means

ed community he would call John’s Island. Houses would

that a number of homes built in John’s Island during the

nestle among the many majestic oaks, and three champion-

1970s and 1980s are below the flood zone and lack ade-

ship golf courses would attract buyers, golf bags and clubs

quate protection from hurricane conditions There is a mar-

in hand.

ket demand for hurricane code compliant, more energy

Preserving the land so generously blessed by nature was

efficient homes.”

a priority then and remains so today — as stricter building

Thanks to a partnership formed by Lyons, Charles

codes, technical advances and societal trends have led to

Croom and Ned Sherwood, that demand is being met. To

the need for new construction.

date the partnership has purchased properties and Croom


Lynn furnished the living room with some of her treasured antiques from the couple’s Nantucket home. They not only add warmth, they embody special memories.

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The open kitchen/family room is like a magnet, drawing family and friends together. As throughout the house, the view takes center stage.


has built three new houses. A fourth is in the works. More are on the drawing board, and a virtual reality tour prior to construction provides a sense of place to potential buyers attracted to the John’s Island lifestyle and more often than not, eager to play what is often referred to as “the King of Sports.”

R

ick and Lynn Tetrault were among the first. Having recently gone through a major renovation of their Nantucket home, the avid golfers

were looking for a new house in a golf community where they could put down permanent roots. They consider themselves fortunate to have been in John’s Island at the right time as the bones of their four-bedroom house had just begun to take shape. “The house had already been framed, and as we walked through and looked out all the openings where windows and doors were going to be. We could see all the beautiful oak trees, the north course 14th fairway and the lake beyond. We fell in love with the views,” Lynn enthuses. Views throughout the John’s Island community were even more beautiful than Lynn remembered. “Years ago a childhood friend had invited me to her parents home here in John’s Island and I had fond memories of the time I spent with them. After our twin boys graduated from high school and headed off to college, Rick and I decided to explore Florida. We looked at several areas on both the east and west coasts, but none of them felt right. Our last stop was here in Vero Beach and we immediately knew that this was where we wanted to be.” With that decision made, it was time to start house hunting. Rick and Lynn looked at a number of existing homes for sale, both in and around John’s Island. However, the majority required renovations, which they didn’t want to get involved with again. When they heard about a new house being built on a quiet cul-de-sac lane bearing the John’s Island developer’s first name, they wasted no time in checking it out. “It just so happened that the first day we saw the property, Charles and David were both there and we had an opportunity to talk and go over the plans. We felt so comfortable with them. There was an immediate trust, which was important to us.” Rick agrees. “Also, because the house was in the preliminary stages of construction we were able to step into the owner’s shoes early on and work closely with them. David and Charles made it all easy. Croom hit every deadline and finished on time and on budget. We couldn’t be happier.” It’s easy to see why. The 5,600-square-foot pool home surrounded by oak trees and lush plantings features

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Relaxing is encouraged in the family room where seating and stretching opportunities abound.

richly detailed spaces that open to the pool, spa and fairway beyond. Architect Harry Howle is the one to thank for the lifestyle appeal of the Tetrault’s new home as well as others Croom has planned. “There are particular aspects that need to be part of the design formula,” Howle explains, referring to a series of architectural renderings on his desk. “This is basically what we call an open ‘H’ floor plan, where the living room is at the center of the house, and when people come through the front door they look straight out and the views explode. On one side of the living room is the master suite, with separate his and her closets and one large bathREPRINTED WITH PERMISSION © VERO BEACH MAGAZINE

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room, and there is also a guest room that can serve as a home office. “We’ve found that many of the new owners may still be working. This side is basically the owner’s private space,” Howle notes.

Ecclestone’s vision was to create a private, family-oriented community he would call John’s Island.

Houses would nestle among the many majestic oaks and three championship golf courses.


Custom moldings and decorative columns add to the lanai’s appeal.

The kitchen, family room and two guest rooms are on the other side of the living room. “We like to have what we call a household office between the garage and the kitchen.

It’s like a control center. There’s a calendar and that’s where the mail goes, keeping clutter off the kitchen counter.” Another key design component, and one of Howle’s

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In the master bedroom, the joy of waking up to panoramic views of nature sets the tone for the day.

personal favorites, is the summer porch adjacent to the

thermostat and make other changes from anywhere I hap-

family/dining room. Here, a glass wall separating the two

pen to be.

spaces seamlessly disappears into the sidewall when desired, transitioning the space from indoor to outdoor.

TV on the wall and show us what they’re trying to achieve.

lifestyle,” Howle points out. “The addition can almost dou-

We can then go into our design file and show them possi-

ble the interior family space; it’s a way to bridge the use of

ble ways to go about it,” Howle says smiling. “These new

the house with the outdoors, to blur the definition between

homes are not just our creations, they’re a melding of the

the two.”

client’s wishes to fit with our idea of what the end product

meets federal flood elevation levels and is compliant with current hurricane code requirements, including impact rated windows, roll down impact shutters and proper roof strapping. It is also energy efficient, thanks to spray foam insulation, enhanced air conditioning, LED lighting and

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with an iPad or iPhone, pull up a file and transfer it to the

“This is a feature that takes advantage of the Florida

Not only is the Tetraults’ home beautiful, the structure

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“Another thing. A homeowner can come to my office

should be by enhancing interior features such as moldings, floor finishes, countertops, even appliances.”

T

he Tetrault home is a perfect example. Because construction had only begun four months earlier, there were opportunities for Lynn and Rick

home automation features that allow them to monitor the

to add custom details and features that fit their lifestyle.

house when they are away.

In addition, the amount of time from breaking ground to

“The importance of staying current with new products and processes can’t be stressed enough,” says Howle, who with

completion was shortened, allowing them to move in nine months later.

iPhone in hand, demonstrates by dimming the pendant

The house and community are everything, and more,

lights above his desk. I can adjust the lighting, reset the

than they had hoped for, Lynn says. “We spend at least


In the kitchen, three is the magic number, as a trio of lights shed their glow and sculpted chairs provide seating around the island’s gleaming stone countertop.


While the pool and fountain spa may be tempting, it’s the North Course 14th fairway beyond that appeals to the homeowner’s eye.

seven months of the year here and love it. It’s fantas-

de s k , w h i c h I h a v e in th e liv i n g r oo m . I’ m st ill

tic for the boys who are going into their senior year in

w or k in g a n d I di dn ’ t w a n t to b e tu c k e d a w ay in

college. Both are golfers, one in particular is very good,

a b e dr oom . I w a n te d to b e where I could look out at

and if possible, he and Rick are out on the course every

the views. I don’t think I will ever tire of them. Rick and

day.

I feel very fortunate to have found this house while it

“There are so many things to do and people are so

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was just being constructed. It’s perfect.”

friendly. We’ve met more people and made more friends

That’s music to David Lyons’ ears. “Our compa-

in just the 18 months we’ve been here than we have

ny has built hundreds and hundreds of homes in

after 10 years in Nantucket. When it comes time to go

John’s Island, and to be able to maintain a great

up north it’s a challenge to get my husband to leave,

reputation for almost 40 years is something we’re

he likes it here so much,” says Lynn, who played a sig-

proud of,” says Lyons, who credits Ecclestone for

nificant role in the design and décor of their home. A

his vision.

palette of soft blues and whites provides the perfect

“For him to discover this property back in the

setting for antique furnishings that came from their

late 1960s really was incredible. When we’re going

home in Nantucket.

to introduce new construction, one of our team’s

“So ma ny of t he t hi ngs I brought h e r e h a v e me morie s; t hey a d d a wa rmt h, l i ke my a n ti q u e

highest priorities is that we honor the architectural integrity and environment of John’s Island.” `

In With the New  
In With the New  

Vero Beach Magazine September issue The Tetrault's new home honors tradition yet provides cutting-edge protection from storm weather.