This versatile little pool and guest house is a bit more contemporary than the historic main residence it serves. But it’s got the same soul, having been designed “in the spirit of 18th-century farm dependencies and summer kitchens,” explains architect Mark McInturff. “We proposed to build a largely open-air structure that could be used as a self-sufficient house during warm weather, a guest house year round, and a pool house in summer.” Call it the dwelling equivalent of a convertible.

The pool was already there, so the architects used that as a starting point and designed around an existing stone wall. That wall now divides the structure’s open air spaces from its only conditioned private spaces—a bedroom and bathroom—which are otherwise enclosed in stucco masonry. The open air side, meanwhile, includes a breezy kitchen, an outdoor shower, and a pool equipment area, all topped by a thin copper roof that is supported by white brick piers. The projecting roof provides welcome shade, as do timber louvers offering additional sun control.