Boutique B&B Brought to Life | Inn at Water's Edge
Wright Construction submitted the historic Inn at Water's Edge renovation project to the Light Commercial Renovation Category in Qualified Remodeler Magazine's 2021 Master Design Awards! Here you'll see the incredible photos we submitted to the judging panel, as well as the question and answer portion of the submission process. While we won't find out who took home the Gold until late August 2021, we thought it would be fun to let you in on the anticipation, and show you what we put forth as one of our best projects in the last two years. Enjoy!
Checking In - While the exterior of the Inn at Water's Edge didn't get renovated, It really fits it's location as is! The perfect colonial Inn for Vermont.
What were the project scope and objectives?
With the intention of retaining as much historical value as possible, Wright Construction's objective was to complete a full renovation to a 1878 home that was converted to an Inn in 1999. This included 11 guest bedrooms and 11 bathrooms, all corridors, the lobby, common areas, bar, and storage. With that, the clients and Wright had a prevalent shared goal- to elevate the Inn at Water's Edge with stylish design and modern comforts to provide future guests with the best Vermont experience possible. To do that, Wright used creativity and craftsmanship to reconstruct the inn with state-of-the-art upgraded technology, warm and inviting common spaces and bedrooms, and modern bathrooms. All while preserving as much of the original building and materials as they could. Plus, cleverly adding a few more touches such as removing 20,000SF of wallpaper and replacing it with custom wainscoting to bring back the classic traditional feel, blending in perfectly with the restored original pieces throughout the Inn. Collaborating with a local sawmill, Wright was able to bring in multiple custom wood elements used in the lobby and bathrooms. Like a classic Bed and Breakfast, no two rooms or bathrooms are alike. This was designed with the guests in mind who could return again and have a completely different experience.
Welcome In - The inviting lobby features original brick floors from 1878, stunning trusses, and elaborate wainscoting. Timeless iron light fixtures and railings contrast the natural tones and complete the cozy vibe. Through the lobby is the Gathering Room. Here, the classic historical inn look shines through. The windows provide ample light for guests to enjoy a game of chess, but more importantly provides a bright and energetic space to enjoy each other's company.
Balancing Bold & Natural - The deep soulful colors of the sofa, wood beams, and the kitchenette peeping through bring a comfortable elegance to the Gathering Room.
What were the project challenges?
Wright experienced two major project challenges that were overcome to achieve the desired result of the Inn. The first was the scheduling. Because we started the renovation in October, the holiday season was beginning. The Owners requested we complete at least 7 guest bedroom and bathroom renovations within 3 months so they could entertain their family at the Inn for Christmas. It was difficult to update the Inn with modern necessities and renovate the rooms and bathrooms in such a short time. The projected completion date was March 2020, in the hopes of opening before the end of the ski season.
However, scheduling was halted fully due to COVID-19. Wright Construction shut down completely in April 2020 and they did not return to the Inn at Water's Edge until May. This was a challenge unlike any the company had faced before. To learn how to comply with state guidelines and return to the job site safely was an interesting experience for everyone
involved. Aside from scheduling, Wright faced another challenge in this renovation project- making the necessary system upgrades to meet guests needs today. This means high speed internet, smart tv's in every room with access to streaming, adding new energy efficient plumbing and lighting fixtures, and completely updating the insulation system all while trying to preserve as much of the historical look as possible. To find the right fixtures and add the technology was difficult while trying to remain period specific.
Moving Inn - Notice the lack of closets in the bedrooms. Instead of building closets, to preserve space Wright Construction designed innovative walls that feature many hooks for guests to use. The custom wainscoting makes stunning, yet subtle appearances throughout the Inn. Each of the 11 bedrooms have televisions. With the technical upgrades Wright Construction made to the Inn, they are now able to offer the fastest internet in Ludlow, Vermont. The looks is charming and traditional, but the amenities suit the needs of guests today.
What were the project solutions?
Wright met the 1st phase challenge by doing their best to have flexibility with their schedule and coordinate around guests arrival and departure dates at the Inn early in the process. There was much communication between the Owner and the Contractor to determine what is essential to complete in order to meet the family's holiday needs, and what could wait until post New Year. When COVID-19 stopped progress at the Inn, Wright could not continue until there was a better plan to move forward with the project while keeping the construction team and the Inn staff safe from the pandemic. New PPE protocols were implemented as well as social distancing and additional staff training. It was also important to adjust our expectations and perspective on the project completion of the Inn at Water's Edge. It would not be open before the end of the ski season. Accepting this allowed all parties to move forward positively and look forward to a Summer completion. The official reopening of the Inn at Water's Edge was in June 2020. To ensure the entire Inn was better equipped to conserve light and water, and heat and cool efficiently, Wright designed
with 'timelessness' in mind, choosing colors, textures, and shapes that would still feel classic over time. Simple lines and complementary textures. Neutral color pallets in the bedrooms and bathrooms. Rich wood tones and intentional accents. The intention was to preserve the historic colonial vibe without choosing overly modern fixtures.
Master Bath - The largest room at the Inn at Water's Edge features a stunning bathroom that is light and bright. The image beautifully captures the flow of the room. When you look into the mirror on the left, you'll get a glimpse of the luxury that is this bathroom. The massive bathroom in the largest room houses this incredible bathtub, a full stand up shower with a custom glass barn door, and tile you could stare at for hours.
R&R - In this case that stands for Renovation and Restoration. Throughout the entire Inn, Wright Construction restored when possible, and renovated to fit the existing design. In this two bedroom suite, white floor-to-ceiling shiplap was added as a statement wall to match the restored original flooring that was a gift to them, from the Inn. When what's there is already gorgeous, highlighting it is the main goal.
Did you employ any green elements?
Upgrading the energy efficiency in this Inn was one of the top priorities for the Owners and Wright Construction. The most important was upgrading and increasing the overall insulation throughout the entire building. There were some sections that lacked insulation entirely. Now, it will be significantly less expensive to heat and cool the nearly 12,000SF Inn. This is imperative to ensure the comfortability of guests in the frigid New England winters and the hot and humid summers. It will also drastically reduce the carbon footprint on the Inn. Wright also replaced every light and plumbing fixture with energy efficient versions. Wright also built the Innkeepers a small chicken coop and garden area across the road from the Inn to assist the chef with his farm to table culinary experience. Local materials were sourced to construct the stunning trusses in the lobby, as well as the wood for the vanities in the bathrooms.
Designing With Guests in Mind - Many of the guests at the Inn are fans of winter sports. With the ski mountain nearby, a storage room was necessary. Wright Construction fixed up the inn with custom ski racks, shelving, and a live edge bench to give the guests exactly what they need.