WWII watchtower turned into ‘land yacht’

Architect Siemasko + Verbridge and contractor Windover Construction transformed a coastal wartime observation post into an amenity-filled guesthouse.

January 14, 2016 |
WWII watchtower turned into ‘Land Yacht’

Photos: Windover Construction

Originally a fire-control observation post for coastal defense during World War II, and then renovated to have a lighthouse façade, Lookout Tower at Smith’s Point in Manchester, Mass., is one of the more unusual guesthouses you’ll see.

The adaptive-reuse project, led by architect Siemasko + Verbridge and contractor Windover Construction, converted the 11-story watchtower into a sea-themed guesthouse for the property’s owners.

It wasn’t a simple remodel. The 165-foot-tall tower had no elevator, air conditioning, or heating. Its walls, floors, ceilings, and stairs were made of concrete. The rooms were small, measuring only 13x13 feet.

Nevertheless, the Building Team was able to make the structure luxurious, redesigning it into what it calls a “vertical land yacht.” The team completely redid the tower, adding full guest quarters, an entertaining area, and balconies that overlook the Atlantic coast.

All 11 floors have wood finishes, nautical accents, white walls, and windows to open up each room. Stainless steel hardware, floor-to-ceiling maple panels, a maple vanity, a mahogany bed and paneling, and an aqua-tiled walk-in shower were installed.

Each floor has a different use, with two and a half baths, two bedrooms, a living room, snack room, and bar.


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