For years, owners and visitors of Lake Martin have loved the lake life, but its rural location had few amenities to offer other than the lake itself. The need for a place to go at days end to relax with friends, eat, and not have to clean up - also known as a “restaurant” - was finally met with the creation of The Springhouse. The location, Russell Crossroads, was chosen so that the restaurant would be centrally located to most of the neighborhoods in the area, yet also feasibly accessible by boat.
From the beginning, the design concept was about creating an appropriate response to the laid-back-easy-summer lifestyle that “lake living” embodies. The architectural style needed to connect with an agrarian or rural vernacular. One challenge was creating an environment that, from the exterior, felt unassuming and yet possessed a simple elegance. The exterior scheme reduces what could be an intimidating scale by using traditional farm-house components such as a dog-trot and kitchen, plus lean-to additions- as more children were born, also shutter porches, wood-sheds, and so forth. The beauty of such a scheme is multifaceted- in that it gives a familiar feeling of times gone by, that many people can easily relate to, as well as creating multiple massing and layout options.
From the rustic elegance of the dining halls to the airy exterior dining terraces, patrons can fully personalize their dining experience. And the “regulars” can meander through the underground wine cellars to dine in the partially buried “cistern” dining room. The final result is a restaurant that has become both a local favorite and a traveler destination.