bungalow living room with French doors to the deck
Photo: Keller + Keller
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Vacation Cohabitation

"We fell in love with Jamestown after spending several summers there and wanted a house we could share," says Dana. "Not by divvying up the summer and using it separately but by being there and using it together."

Sounds interesting, but not many extended families would act on the impulse by creating a family corporation with three shareholders holding the deed for a house that would ultimately have only one master suite. Then renovating on a budget. "That's always good for family tension," Donald jokes. At the same time, he points out, "when you're only in it for a third, everyone's game."

Shown: The living room opens up to a deck in summer months and offers a wood-burning fireplace come winter. To give the room a sense of spaciousness, resident architect Donald Powers situated it three steps down from the dining room, in effect raising the ceiling; "frugal" coffering made from 14s and 16s laid on the flat reinforces the room's casual formality without detracting from a view framed by French doors.
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