Design Influencer: Alec Tesa, AIA

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Design Influencer: Alec Tesa, AIA

tesaThis is the first in what will be an ongoing series at 7 Tide: We’ll be checking in with influencers in the region’s design industry and, in their own words, they’ll share design trends and inspiration.

Since starting his eponymously-named Newport architecture firm in 2011, Alec Tesa, AIA has quickly gained a reputation for designing homes which pair a classic Shingle-style aesthetic with modern function. He has been the recipient of the Henry Adam AIA Medal from the American Institute of Architecture and, in 2014, he was selected as one of New England Home’s 5 Under 40 which recognizes the top talent in the New England Design industry.

Windows + Kitchens!

Architecture fluctuates with trends over time, yet the most timeless and successful designs are embodied by function. We, at A. Tesa Architecture, have seen a variety of desired layouts by our clients as the needs of the home change. One in particular, is the kitchen. This space has evolved the most significantly over the last half century. From a room kept almost a secret from guests, it is now the primary focal point in many of our designs.

In coastal New England, natural light, and hopefully an ocean view, are part of the desired scene, and we have seen a fantastic integration of windows into the kitchen, more and more in lieu of upper cabinetry! We often specify Marvin windows in our home designs because so many of their lines work well in complementing the Shingle-style aesthetic of New England architecture.

Incredible innovations in kitchen storage have introduced drawers as the new storage king. With an open layout, there is often more room for a substantial island, which is perfect to absorb the contents of those upper cabinets replaced by windows to enhance that beautiful view. Advancements in appliance technology have also improved cooking in front of windows, or on the island which helps when configuring the layout into such an open space.

Wolf + Subzero have been a remarkable brand to see integrated into our kitchen designs, with their high performance yet ease of use to further the function of such a key part of the home. Our favorite, by far is the steam oven by Wolf, using steam technology to enhance flavors of both gourmet meals and leftovers in an entirely new way. Another one of our favorite design trends is the casement window paired with a small transom window above. This allows fresh air to flow into a space through a standard size window while providing more additional natural light.

Below are some of our favorite kitchens that combine an open layout, natural light and incredible views into our favorite little coastal city.