Cape Dutch inspired home


The moment I came across the article in Architectural Digest, featuring this Cape Dutch house, I could hardly believe that this house was built in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

8Baton Rouge Cape Dutch inspired house, seen by the lake.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD


Reading the full story (here) I discovered that the owners are well-traveled people, knowing a lot of Dutch architecture and history.

They had fallen in love with Cape Dutch architecture during their travels and commissioned Alabama based Architect Bobby McAlpine of McAlpine Tankersley Architecture and interior designer Ray Booth of McAlpine Booth & Ferrier Interiors to build a Cape Dutch inspired house in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Bobby McAlpine is absolutely one of my favorite American architects (his book ‘The Home Within Us’ is a never leaving coffee table book). Sensing this house ‘of his hand’, definitely confirmed his architectural skills, his understanding of using authentic building materials. Bobby McAlpine is a competent architect, a connoisseur of different architectural styles.

Cape Dutch architecture is an architectural style found in the Western Cape of South Africa (Dutch colony), primarily built in the 17th century.

Houses in Cape Dutch style have a recognisable design, and are distinguished by a grand, ornately rounded gable, as seen on 17th century Holland townhouses. The Cape Dutch houses have whitewashed walls and reed-thatched roofs. They are usually H-shaped.

9A South African Cape Dutch house   Image source here

Most of these Cape Dutch buildings have been lost, however the design tradition is still to see in some historical South African towns, such as Stellenbosch.

15 Rounded gable townhouses in Amsterdam   Photo credit Klaas Schoof   Image source here


Let’s go back to the Baton Rouge house.

The owners paid careful attention to details, bringing in soulful European antiques and art throughout their home.

1The center hall is paved with well-worn black and white marble, has a beamed ceiling and runs from front to back. The room is evoking the atmosphere of a Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675) painting.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD


13‘The Concert’ (1666), painting by Johannes Vermeer.   Source here


The center hall of the Baton Rouge house reminds me of an entrance hall of a Belgian home, designed by Axel Vervoordt.14Dutch style entrance hall designed by Axel Vervoordt   Image source here


2Hand-troweled plaster walls and custom-made raised oak paneling at the entrance hall. A circa-1740 Baroque painted table and a 17th century portrait.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD

18Original 17th century Dutch Baroque table   Source here


3The living room is a nearly 50-foot-long space.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD

As the owners requested to give their home the look of a an old house, there was opted to add antique-style glass in the windows.


11 Dutch spirit 17th century bronze chandelier and wall sconces.  Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD

21Original Dutch Baroque chandelier   Source here

19A large late 17th century Dutch brass wall sconce   Source here


4I absolutely love the view from the kitchen towards the sitting area.  Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD 

17Fire place mantel  Museum of Appingedam – Holland


5Pantry with view towards the sitting area. Notice again the small Dutch chandelier above the table.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD


6The box beds in the guest room evoke a 17th century bedroom.   Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD

16Box bed Museum of Appingedam – Holland


10Thatched-roof dining pavilion.  Photography Pieter Estersohn   Source AD


To see more pictures of this Cape Dutch House and to read the full story, please click HERE.


Congratulations to all the people who were involved with the building of this gorgeous house, the owners and the team of McAlpine Tankersley Architecture and McAlpine Booth & Ferrier Interiors !



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