At the crest of a hill on a heavily wooded site, this shoreside retreat peers through the foliage onto the intersection of the Ouachita River and Lake Catherine. Once territory of the Washita Tribes and now the second home to our clients, this fertile ground has been a desirable resting place for millenniums.

Envisioned to become an escape from the hustle and bustle of the metropolitan city, this second home would allow solitude for work but would also become a gathering place for friends and business alike. Initial conversations with the client emphasized the importance for connection with the land but also to their roots – one an ex PGA Golfer and the other of Irish decent. Precedent images included a collage of photographs recalling the dry stack stone walls from their favorite golf courses in Scotland. Historically used for land delineation, these dry stack stone walls became the line of delineation in their home from public to private spaces. On one side of the wall was a composition of opaque private masses comprised of the master bedroom, bath and study / office, and on the other side was a linear, transparent form with views to Lake Catherine, the Ouachita River and the opposing peninsula – creating an experience of solitude and relief after a rigorous work schedule. 

With a massive outdoor fireplace anchoring the end of the linear stone wall, the home recalls a steamship at the head of the tributary. Private guest homes, self-contained to serve as compact offices for guests, inspired by Japanese fishing villages cascade down the hill to the water’s edge where a boat dock floats on the water like a Buddhist lantern — illuminating the path to creativity. Although purely modern, these time-honored precedents render a developed site that appears to have existed long before us — providing rebirth and renewal and bringing our clients dream home to fruition. 


  • Timothy Hursley


  • Hot Springs, Arkansas


  • Completed July 2021