For several summers, Manhattan resident Nicole Mesard and her husband, Michael, rented beach houses in Quogue, New York, along the southern shore of Long Island. The couple loved the family-centric feeling and low-key ambience of the village. And they appreciated that it is only a 1½-hour drive from their city apartment. “We didn’t want to be stuck in traffic every weekend,” Nicole says.
Long Island 1: Jamie Nesbitt-Weber Interior Design, original photo on Houzz
Photos by Tim Williams except where noted; photo by Jamie Nesbitt-Weber
Houzz at a Glance
Who lives here: Nicole Mesard, a lawyer, husband Michael, an asset manager for an investment firm, and their three children when they’re on vacation
Location: Quogue, New York
Size: 4,000 square feet (372 square meters) after a major addition and remodel
Designers: Architect William F. Heine and interior designer Jamie Nesbitt-Weber
When it came time to hunt for real estate, the couple found a cottage on a 1-acre wooded lot and purchased it in 2013. The property had desired assets, such as a tennis court and an inground pool. But the one-story, flat-roofed structure seemed too small and compact for them and their three children, ages 10, 9 and 4, plus the many friends and extended family members they often host.
Shortly after they bought the property, the couple hired architect William F. Heine and builder Brian McGinness to expand the home. Heine says coordination with the local design review board had to be approved before renovations were given the go-ahead.
Here, cedar shingles clad the exterior and roof.
Long Island 2: Tim Williams, original photo on Houzz
After seeing the work Brooklyn interior designer Jamie Nesbitt-Weber had accomplished at a friend’s house, the Mesards felt that she could translate their style — beachy and comfortable with a dash of sophistication — to the home. From the designer’s perspective, it was a pleasure to work with clients who allowed her full range in transforming the house into a summer place worthy of its setting. “Because Nicole leads a busy life, I would send her by email ideas on mood boards,” Nesbitt-Weber says.
The designer painted all the walls, from the kitchen to the master bedroom, in Benjamin Moore’s Simply White. Oak flooring runs throughout. Everything is new, yet the furnishings and accessories seem to traverse the century. All around, there are references to sand, stone and sea.
Two off-white sofas, a tall navy linen wing chair and a sapphire swivel chair are oriented around a creamy Carrara marble fireplace surround. A 54-inch-wide chandelier hangs above a driftwood table, adding needed scale against the soaring pitched ceiling. A sisal rug with a blue border anchors the space. Glass lamps and sheer draperies contribute to the low-key tone of the room.
Nesbitt-Weber used a console as a “nice separation point,” she says, from the adjacent dining room. Two ceramic stools, neatly tucked underneath, provide additional seating.
Sofas: Crate & Barrel; wing chair: Kim Salmela; swivel chair: Mecox; chandelier: Ralph Lauren; console: Restoration Hardware
In harmony with the rest of the house, the kitchen is about clean lines and functionality, with recessed white cabinets, dark Caesarstone quartz countertops, natural linen Roman shades and sleek stainless steel Viking appliances.
Floating stainless steel shelves display the homeowners’ collections of blue china and olive oil bottles. Grocery needs or messages can be jotted down on the framed chalkboard. Orange stools add punch to the otherwise neutral palette. “Early on, Nicole bought the stools and wasn’t sure if she wanted to use them,” Nesbitt-Weber says. “I said, ‘Let’s keep them,’ and I added two more.”
Chalkboard: Pottery Barn
Long Island 3: Tim Williams, original photo on Houzz
In the dining space off the kitchen, Nesbitt-Weber added a rectangular wooden table, which expands to seat up to 12, and stylish blue linen chairs. A rectangular linen pendant light hangs above.
Table: Restoration Hardware
Long Island 4: Tim Williams, original photo on Houzz
Two French doors lead to the first-floor study, where the homeowners can, if they choose, stretch their workweek and log on to a laptop while sitting at the lacquer desk. The navy linen sofa bed can also accommodate guests. Two studded white ottomans add more first-floor seating. “This is the only room we didn’t paint,” says Nesbitt-Weber, noting the burlap-hued grasscloth by Phillip Jeffries on the walls. It works well with the navy-colored draperies.
Desk: Rosenberry Rooms
Long Island 5: Tim Williams, original photo on Houzz
The master bedroom is part of a second-floor addition. Simple white end tables with turquoise tops, along with cobalt-blue lamps, flank the slipcovered headboard. A shot of the sea captured by photographer Alison Shaw hangs above.
Bedding: Oake, Bloomingdale’s; patterned pillow: Serena & Lily; headboard: Restoration Hardware
Long Island 6: Tim Williams, original photo on Houzz
One couldn’t fault anyone for wanting to stay indefinitely in this calm, soothing guest room, whose French doors lead to the pool area.
Nicole says that her family is “always on the go,” and loves to hike, play tennis and spend time at the beach when they’re at Quogue. “Having our house is great,” she says. “It allows us to get away from the city and spend downtime together as a family.”
Sisal rug: West Elm; art: Lulu DK; headboard: Serena & Lily