Wellesley Cliff Estates Revival

Cliff Estates, Wellesley, MA

Originally built in the 1930s in classic Tudor style, this stone-faced house withstood years of benign neglect. When new owners commissioned its renovation, the house had a failing structure and inappropriate additions, with overgrown vegetation threatening its exterior walls. Its interiors, meanwhile, felt closed, dark, and disconnected from nature.

The renovation began with the removal of exterior cladding to repair structural damage. The house was then refaced with the original stone and new white clapboard, as well as white-painted brick. The resulting aesthetic is more New England appropriate. Scaled-back front landscaping allows the renovated façade to take center stage.

At the rear, a more appealing arrangement of windows and doors lets additional light inside, and an expansive bluestone terrace provides previously lacking outdoor living space. Conveniently located off the primary indoor spaces, this expansive terrace spans the entire back of the house, with a smaller additional patio to the side.

The interiors were reorganized in various ways, such as opening the kitchen to the addition’s new family room. Above, the number of second-floor bedrooms was reduced to create a more logical floor plan and a larger master suite, with a new third-story bedroom carved out of former storage space.