An award-winning home designed by Nova Scotia-based architect Brian MacKay-Lyons in Upper Kingsburg, N. S. is drawing international attention, says Engel & Völkers. It is currently listed by Engel & Völkers Nova Scotia for $3,750,000.

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Known as Smith House, the home embraces MacKay-Lyons’ Acadian and Mi’kmaq ancestry through the thoughtful selection of design elements and materials, the company says in a news release. The home has received dozens of awards and global recognition including Plan Award Finalist, Architizer Awards, A+ Awards Finalist (2020) and the Residential Design Architecture Awards (2020).

Smith House blends classic and contemporary for a space that is deeply rural and surprisingly urban, says Engel & Völkers. It reflects the farming and fishing villages that surround it, constructed using resources and materials “true to the high stakes and hard-working culture of Nova Scotians,” the company says.

“When you get to the front door, you’ve already experienced half of the architecture because it’s about how you arrive. It’s about the landscape; the building is a secondary thing,” says MacKay-Lyons, a partner of MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects. “Design lovers and wellness seekers will find both exceptional design features and the feeling of calmness at Smith House for an unparalleled living experience.”

The Gatehouse is rustic, defined by its exposed studs.
The Gatehouse is rustic, defined by its exposed studs.

Smith House is on a two-acre site located on the Atlantic Coast of Nova Scotia. The design integrates three pavilions, each unique in purpose, described as “three buildings with three very different levels of finish” by MacKay-Lyons. The space between the pavilions features multiple courtyards. Structures strategically block the wind while also allowing the sun to filter through. Based on their purpose, the pavilions are named The Gatehouse, Night Pavilion and Day Pavilion.

The Day Pavilion is characterized by endless glass.
The Day Pavilion is characterized by endless glass.

The Day Pavilion is the centre of social life at the home, housing the kitchen, dining and living areas. It’s been positioned to look west over the ocean and is supported by a fireplace embedded in a five-tonne slab of stone. It is characterized by endless glass that encompasses the building, polished-concrete floors, ash ceilings and steel beams.

A fireplace is embedded in a five-tonne slab of stone.
A fireplace is embedded in a five-tonne slab of stone.

The Night Pavilion, located alongside the Day Pavilion, faces east. MacKay-Lyons designed it to feel protected, like a cave, with lots of stone. It is painted white with ash floors and houses the bedrooms, with the main bedroom connecting to a bathroom with ocean views. The bathrooms are all in white marble, giving the space a minimal and calming feel.

The Gatehouse is rustic, defined by its exposed studs. Intended to be a retreat, it features a Stûv wood stove and a daybed that rests under a pair of giant wall-mounted antlers. An outdoor barbecue and pizza oven are built into a long, low stone wall outside the building.

The listing agents are Alexandra Vallee and Julie Kells of Engel & Völkers Nova Scotia in Halifax.

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