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Darien architects make magazine's 'A-List'

Published 12:54 pm, Tuesday, September 25, 2012
  • Hilton-VanderHorn Architects, owned by Darien residents Charles Hilton and Douglas VanderHorn, has been selected as the winner of the 2012 ìAt Homeî A-List award competition. The firm was honored for its design of a French Manor-style home on a beaucolic 4-acre site in Greenwich. Above left, before renovation, and above right, after. Photo: Contributed
    Hilton-VanderHorn Architects, owned by Darien residents Charles Hilton and Douglas VanderHorn, has been selected as the winner of the 2012 ìAt Homeî A-List award competition. The firm was honored for its design of a French Manor-style home on a beaucolic 4-acre site in Greenwich. Above left, before renovation, and above right, after. Photo: Contributed

 

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Hilton-VanderHorn Architects, owned by Darien residents Charles Hilton and Douglas VanderHorn, has been selected as the winner of the 2012 "At Home" A-List award competition.

They won in the "traditional architecture greater than 7,000 square feet" category. Sponsored by Moffly Media, the A-List Awards honor the top projects in architecture, interior design and landscape by firms working and practicing in Fairfield County.

The panel of judges were Gary Brewer, partner at Robert A.M. Stern Architects, and Thom Filicia, Victoria Hagan, Alexa Hampton, Richard Hartlage, Celerie Kemble, Corey Papadopoli, Peter Pennoyer and Stephen Stimson. They reviewed more than 100 submissions.

Hilton-VanderHorn Architects also was nominated for its projects in the Renovation, Historical Home Renovation and Kids' Space categories. The firm was honored for its design of a French Manor-style home on a bucolic 4-acre site in Greenwich. Originally built in 1958 in a neo-French style, the house had been renovated so extensively over the years that it had lost its original charm. The owner wanted to significantly improve the house's French aesthetic, while modernizing the construction and improving the function of the plan.

The design involved gutting the entire house down to the studs, removing poorly executed additions and the squat second floor, and reworking the entire plan to finish the structure inside and out in a classic traditional palette. The exterior was clad in a handmade terra-cotta brick capped with a graduated slate roof. The interiors now display a sense of refinement, due to thoughtful proportions and details such as ornamental transoms and elegant cornices.

"Their work stands out for its exquisite craftsmanship, attention to detail and timelessness," Pennoyer said.

"From the classic symmetry to the interior detailing, this house is perfection," Hartlage said.

Hilton-VanderHorn Architects is a 21-year-old Greenwich firm that specializes in traditional residential design. The firm has completed mor than 250 projects across the country, with the majority of its work located in Fairfield and Westchester (N.Y.) counties.

The firm is the recipient of American Institute of Architects, Connecticut Home Builders Association and various periodical and trade association design awards. Its projects are featured regularly in national and regional shelter publications, as well as in books. Hilton-VanderHorn Architects has been featured this year in two new TV series -- a pilot for "The Architects of Modern Living" and "Homes and Estates -- Today & Tomorrow."