I’m often asked about trends that I am seeing, and one is how design professionals are now approaching the master suite to serve more functions than just as a bedroom. This makes sense, especially in luxury second homes built for hosting and entertaining. With a home full of guests, the master suite offers a place for quiet retreat, and for these spaces, people are asking to include more. Here are three examples. 

The bedroom featured above is in a quiet corner of the main floor of a Glenwild home (Upwall Design, architect; Dubell Construction, builder). AMB Design (Anne-Marie Barton) finished it in white with accents in patterns and neutrals. 

Behind the partial screen is a spacious home office with built-in cabinetry to maintain efficiencies and minimize any clutter. No matter the activity in the rest of the home, the homeowner can slip in and take an important call or finish off paperwork. Given how often we in the West work with people in the Eastern time zone, this would be a great arrangement for an early morning conference call. 

A design by Gigaplex Architecture (Hank Louis) for a lakeside home in the upper Midwest demonstrates provisions for privacy and quiet. The double doors (with a wide glass transom above for natural light) distance the sleeping area down a hallway and away from the hubbub.

Sharing the bedroom space is a home library for the avid readers. The reading chairs look out to the lake, and the library table makes it a space for a research project or a home office. The addition of a television makes it possible to shift the function of the library to a private den, as well. 

This third home, located in Promontory with architecture by Ron Lee and interiors by K Rocke Design, includes a private sitting room separated by a partial wall and a see-through glass fireplace. It’s a place for just the couple, a quiet conversation with just one or two of the guests, or some one-on-one time with a child. 

I was reminded of 18th and 19th Century manor homes where people would receive guests in their private chambers. Perhaps that need for quiet conversations with those close in busy homes still exists, and this is the modern expression. 

Architects, builders, and designers are more frequently recognizing their clients’ needs for privacy and quiet pastimes. Social scientists are saying that people who are more introverted need these spaces, and I also sense that even the most extroverted among us crave more quiet “me time.” These master suite inclusions do just that, and in a beautifully executed manner. 

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