Enduring Design

A lot goes into creating a timeless lake home that can be enjoyed for generations to come. Home designer Adam Gerndt shares his expertise.

Lake house exterior

Let it Flow
“A top consideration when designing a lake house is the flow of spaces, especially when considering the indoor/outdoor living,” says Adam. “You have to consider how the house will be used and how people will move through it.” Questions he considers: Is there a bathroom convenient to lakeside so people don’t have to go far into the home if they are wet? What is the relationship between the kitchen and outdoor cooking area?

Lake house exterior

Food for Thought
Put care and planning into the design when it comes to extra refrigeration and large pantries. Most lake homes are not conveniently located near grocery stores, so make sure there’s plenty of space to stock up on food, drinks, ice, and other items.


Space Plan
The plan for a lake home can be counterintuitive to how someone may design an everyday home. “At the lake, it’s best to keep bedrooms and bedroom closets small,” Adam says. “People don’t spend much time in the bedroom and rarely actually use the closet space. We are designing more built-in storage with a place for luggage versus true closets now.”

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Primary bedroom

The Real Deal
Rustic finishes not only honor the landscape but also create a sense of place. Adam’s favorites include western red cedar, brown sandstone, solid beams, stone, and cedar shingles. “Authenticity adds to the experience,” he says. “Yes, there is added cost, but there is also added value. I rarely see a client regret doing things the right way or using legitimate materials when the project is complete.”

Lake house exterior

Natural Appeal
For a timeless look that will never go out of style, bring natural elements inside when possible. Finishes like pine paneling for the walls, a limestone surround for the fireplace, and marble countertops not only speak to the environment, they also are durable and will patina beautifully with age.

Smart Siting
Windows bring in light and lake views, but it’s important to consider how much direct sunlight will be coming into the space and at what time of day. “We love natural light, but if people have to wear sunglasses inside, that may be an issue,” Adam says. “Being thoughtful with roof overhangs can add to the design of the home and keep the light levels at an optimum level inside.”

Lake view

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