At the Popular Westhampton Bath & Tennis Club
When my team and I were called in to present an updated look for a new Bridal Suite at the iconic Westhampton Bath & Tennis Club, I thought about all the design work for clients on Dune Road our firm has done over the years. Somehow when you cross over that little bridge, you know you are entering a world of fun and relaxation and a most beautiful stretch of beach. In March 2015, when we began, it was cold, windy, and desolate. Dune Road was “sleeping”, but behind closed doors, the strip was getting ready for the summer season rapidly approaching.
The Board of Directors at Westhampton Bath & Tennis had decided to gut the two rooms at the far end of their lovely pool area to create a private beach front oasis for the brides and grooms who have chosen this location (at least 60 each season) for their destination wedding.
Their mandate – simple, elegant – beachy – but not too beachy – light colors but not too light – practical for cleaning – timeless – cozy – with amenities – all in less than 500’ – and of course, on a budget (piece of cake). For this project, I chose Lisa Arrigo – one of my lead designers – to assist me because her eye for color and her ability to find the perfect item at the best price is matched only by her skill with a screwdriver and drapery hooks!
To their credit, the all-male team of decision makers, Hugh Mulligan, Recording Secretary for The Board of Directors and the Chairman in Charge of Room Renovations for The Facility, Carlos Vega, General Manager, and Craig Pessin, Operations Manager, trusted us. At the time we had not yet met Ralph Montefusco, a one man construction whiz, and Willie, an on-staff jack-of-all-trades who magically appeared when we needed him. Even with great deadline constraints our part was pleasurable and fun because of their assistance.
As we watched the preparations for summer 2015 unfold, we were asked to re-do a pair of rooms on the boat docking, tennis court side of Dune Road. These rooms were even smaller (and so was that budget), but they are now bright, light, airy, and functional. As the new microwaves and refrigerators were being delivered, the guests were signing in across the way to spend the weekend. Did I mention time constraints?
Our last visit to this famed Dune Road destination was just a few weeks before Memorial Day. It was cold and rainy (again) and our vehicles were laden with the finishing touches of the designer’s trade – pillows, art, and accessories. The “oohs and hash” of our all male audience, who prided themselves on letting us know that the rooms turned out exactly as they expected, warmed our hearts and gave us a good laugh. From Hugh Mulligan, Recording Secretary for The Board of Directors, the man who is credited with “discovering” us – “The Board of Directors and all associated with Westhampton Bath and Tennis are over the moon with the results and we look forward to a wonderful future association as we go forward with you on many exciting projects to make Westhampton Bath and Tennis “the” place on Dune Road.”
So - as that guy on the West Coast once said, “I’ll be back” – for more fun assignments and to re-do the cabanas (which, by the way, a very few are still available). As I look out, their location on that matchless stretch of beach prompts me to say something designers rarely do, “I wouldn’t touch a thing.”