Serenity Now - Bernie and Cynthia Dowd


When Bernie and Cynthia Dowd moved to Oceanport in 1992, they loved the gorgeous views of the Shrewsbury River, the meticulously kept properties of their neighbors and, especially, the house next door. So, when it came on the market in 2008, they moved swiftly into their dream home.

Cynthia had always loved the way the house, built in 1975, sits on the property, “its large hip roof allowing it to disappear into the trees.” Inside, however, she immediately felt a need to put her artistic, California-inspired sensibilities to work.

“When we moved in, the house seemed very controlled on the inside. The decor was clean and simple, no fuss anywhere. A single wooden door, without glass, was the only access to the backyard. The patio very small with the original red/black brick. Even the landscape was structured, with groomed hedges. The general feeling was ‘proper’ but not necessarily inviting,” she explained.

From every angle, both inside and out, this one-of-a-kind, three bedroom, 4.5 bathroom, 3,500 square foot beauty offers varying views. From the front, the circular driveway and perfectly situated flora are welcoming – not only to guests, but to countless species of the most colorful birds. Even the beveled glass front door is a work of art that allows visitors to get an early hint of the treasures that lie beyond, thanks, in part, to the distant views of the calm rippling waters of Parker’s Creek.

The backyard is another world to behold. From the mossy stone-tiled, multi-level patio to the fullness of the thick, green lawn, it’s impossible not to be captivated by the spa-like feel of this hidden hideaway. From this vantage point there’s a wondrous view of the river, rimmed at water’s edge with lush phragmites grasses that rustle in the breeze. As the mind becomes settled by the serenity of this homey oasis, you might see the mating pair of ospreys, Rhonda and Ramon, fly from their high nest at the shoreline to greet you.

Inside, one feels immediately comfortable, as if on retreat. The large, unadorned plate glass picture windows throughout offer expansive views and truly bring the outside in. Cynthia's heavenly design is meticulously detailed, right down to the large shed that matches the style of the house and blends so well with its surroundings. There is no space where her Zen-inspired creativity hasn't been aptly infused.

Cynthia has brought her imaginative visions to life in this home; it is the perfect place to live, work and play. Every decision has been made with love. On this property, you feel yourself able to breathe deeply. Your heart rate lowers and you feel at ease. You pour a glass of your favorite something and relax at day’s end. As the sun sets into a canvas of miraculous reds and pinks and oranges you know you are home, and there’s no place else you would rather be.

Picture windows adorn almost every wall throughout – bringing the outside in.
Even the property's newest addition, a generously sized shed, showcases the homeowner’s California- inspired creativity.

From the banks of Parkers Creek, a secluded portion of the Shrewsbury River, a spa-like oasis sits surrounded by lush flora, a sprawling back lawn and mesmerizing birds, including mating ospreys Rhonda and Ramon. At closer view, the Asian-inspired colors of the home’s exterior is welcoming, as is the multi-leveled tiled patio.
The kitchen is the picture of modern luxury. Top of the line appliances, including an induction cooktop and a Subzero freezer, make this a gourmet’s delight. A vaulted ceiling expands the space above while open bamboo shelving below provides ample room to display the couple's extraordinary collection of treasures from around the world.
The open floor plan of the home includes myriad natural element s that accentuate flow throughout. The gorgeous hand-assembled American granite rock wall, featuring one of the home's two fireplaces, along with the red oak wooden floors, creates the perfect place to gather. Even the doors throughout this home are works of art; the front door is flanked by glass sidelights that echo the home's Asian theme, thanks to bamboo etchings. Rice-papered interior doors provide privacy while maintaining the open space feel.

The master bedroom features a vaulted ceiling and pocket doors that lead to an enviable, spa-like ensuite. A recent addition to the home, a 400-square foot master closet, provides seemingly never-ending space.
Below, who wouldn't want to work from home with a desk that offers views of the Shrewsbury River?

A riverbed-like wall encloses the master shower while a deep tub beckons the weary. This hideaway offers not only breathtaking views of the outside, but provides the perfect oasis after a long day.

 

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15 Aug 2017


By Bari Faye Siegel / Photography by Al Kruper
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