The Spectacular Bridge House By MacKay Lyons Sweetapple Architects In Nova Scotia

The Bridge House, designed by renowned East Coast architectural firm MacKay-Lyons Sweet Apple Architects, was built on uneven terrain; it's perched seaside, enjoying sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean.





The Bridge House boasts 3000 square feet of living space and is nestled on a 7-acre waterfront lot in Medway Bay, Nova Scotia. It stands three storeys tall, and, from a distance, appears unadorned. However, as you approach, the house is visually arresting in its material composition and its balanced proportions of solids and voids.





The design complements its surrounding environment while standing proud among the rusticity of its glaciated Maritime setting. Embracing its remote location, the thoughtful placement of windows - in addition to multiple open and covered outdoor spaces - focus and frame specific views which draws one to embrace the natural environment, instead of just looking at it. 

The main level consists a long, open concept common area, which encompasses the kitchen, living room, and family room.

Surprise! Underneath is a self-contained granny suite!





On the second level the sleeping quarters - and even an indulgent raised soaking tub in one of the washrooms - enjoy spectacular views. 

Throughout a palette of concrete, wood, tile and glass keeps the interior simple and free from distraction, allowing the focus to be on the rugged elemental landscape.






On the exterior, the clever use of board and batten, corrugated metal, and chain link - each material contributing to the subtle interplay of patterns - will age well in the harsh Maritime climate. And I find the vertical wood planks wrapping portions of the outdoor spaces creates a sense of enclosure, while bridging indoors and out. It's a testament to how the architects created a harmonious relationship between the formal composition of the structure and the natural landscape which it rests on.





For me the property and its setting presents as an integral part of Martime life, the lighthouse. As an iconic symbol of the Maritime landscape, The Bridge House is a contemporary nod to the history of the lighthouse and its importance to place.





This magical dwelling won the 2009 Lieutenant Governor’s Medal of Excellence award for its architectural design and purpose. 

To see more east coast contemporary vernacular by this reputable firm, visit MacKay-Lyons Sweet Apple Architects Limited or check out these past posts on


The Cliff House

The Leahey II House

The Martin-Lancaster House

Two Hulls House, Nova Scotia

The Lean-To House

The Sliding House

The Bowler House

The Hill House



All photos are courtesy of MacKay-Lyons Sweet Apple Architects Limited and HomeAway.


Researched and Written By Lucas Durante, Undergraduate Student of Architectural Technology at George Brown College

Posted In: Nova Scotia

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