Bridgewater Innovative Builders creates a renovation in Whitefish

A 1920s home gets a makeover

This Whitefish home defines synergy and is the perfect blend of the homeowners' creative inspiration and the builder’s energy-efficient expertise.
Mark Van Everen, owner of Bridgewater Innovative Builders, made sure that his clients, who are third-generation railroad enthusiasts got exactly what they wanted from their custom hillside home that overlooks a park, a railway system, Whitefish Lake and the stunning backdrop beauty of Whitefish Mountain.

The half-acre property was once home to a 1920s-era dwelling that needed removal. Parts of the original structure, however, were rich with beauty and texture, so the homeowner's decided to showcase the dwelling's history by up-cycling individual pieces and transforming them into the aesthetics of a new home.  Along the interior entry wall, strips of planked wood, each chosen by the homeowner for its timeless beauty, patiently restored and soaked in a honey-glazed finish intertwine with one another to create a half-wall panel.

Around the home's 3,400 square-foot perimeter, Van Everen built a high-gabled carport to shade the home's raised deck and entryway. Sturdy timber framing and unique jointed, Van Everen created the structure to hold a heavy snow load and punctuate the most important place on their horseshoe drive. The no maintenance, raised deck system sprawls along the home's exterior sides winding around this home, past a dramatic bay window and underneath a built-in patio cover holding custom-outside heating and cooling system designed by the homeowner. It is an ideal combination of beauty and performance.

Constructed at just the right height, deck railing sits just a little lower so visitors can sit comfortably in chairs, peer off the patio and be undeterred by railing.
To keep this home warm, homeowners rely on an energy-efficient water-based radiant floor heating system that can be turned on and off in one room at a time, zones, or the complete house simultaneously. Outside, low-maintenance composite exterior siding hides an ingenious two-foot-thick air space that sandwiches two-inch insulation, air, another wall, then a protective layer of thermal-synthesized material designed to give the homeowner beauty and the highest-level of energy efficiency.

Entering the 3,250 square-foot interior of this home is breathtaking regardless of which entrance leads from the tamed wild of the outside patio to the rugged chic style indoors. At its front door, the homeowners vision and the builder's skill create a simple and elegant craftsman-style motif that continues throughout the dwelling; antique latch handled-door knobs that are finished in brushed copper, installed about a foot above their standard setting have an old-fashioned lock positioned perfectly underneath. Interior doors, walls and cabinets showcase simplistic farm-style elements and mixed perfectly with classic modern lines. Porcelain tile with a wood-look finish creates an upscale feel with a herring bone design on the main floor. The inviting atmosphere of the great room opens up the beauty of the outside through a long-benched bay window seat and panoramic gabled window overlooking the lake and mountains. In the dining area an antique wood stove on a raised shelf, with a reclaimed wood siding backdrop adds warmth and character. The main kitchen's bold red and white cabinets encircled a wide area underneath a large skylight, creating ample space for guests to mix while food is prepared. The easy flow from the kitchen to dining area and then the great room creates a space that has both spaciousness and comfort.

Downstairs the finished basement is a second complete living space with a sizable kitchen, three bedrooms, an office, a dry-heat sauna, and a comfortable den perfect for guests to watch television or congregate. Topped with beams covered with restored, antique, homeowner hand-crafted planking, a long, rock fireplace and hearth draw all attention toward warmth. Unique for a basement level living space, another panoramic window overlooking Whitefish Lake creates a dramatic, spacious feel. This home with a complete living space on both the upper and lower levels will serve its owners well in style and comfort throughout their remaining years.
Bridgewater Innovative Builders, Mark Van Everen (406) 260-1204

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