Home & Design

Reclaimed barn wood lends the structure a weathered look.

Stools made from boat jacks pull up to newly installed teak bar counters.

The boat was discovered in dry dock.

The Belle is now in party mode, outfitted with full bar equipment and point-of-sale terminals.

Architect Devin Kimmel designed the open-air, Tidewater-style shed with enough space for tables.

Anchors Away in Deale

A grounded 1960s oyster boat is reborn as a rustic watering hole

When the owners of Hidden Harbor Marina in Deale, Maryland, tapped Devin Kimmel to design a freestanding bar on site, the Annapolis architect decided to go nautical. Critical-area laws ruled out siting the bar directly on the waterfront, but another idea dawned on him: “floating” it within view of the water and boatyard in a retrofitted boat.

As luck would have it, they discovered Southern Belle, a 1960s deadrise oyster boat, languishing in drydock. “She had an elongated shape, flat sides and great horizontal lines, which made her ideal for a bar,” Kimmel recalls. The owners bought the 39-foot Belle and the architect had its cockpit outfitted with the inner-workings of a bar. Teak counters were installed on her sides and a coat of sealant preserved her weathered patina.

Kimmel also designed an open-air, Tidewater-style boat shed to enclose the bar. It’s built with wood salvaged from a century-old tobacco barn nearby that, he says, “makes it look like it has some history to it.” A firepit lures guests on chilly nights.

Opened in 2017, the bar became an instant hit at the marina, which also encompasses the Anchored Inn. “You’re surrounded by boats and you can see the water when you sit there,” reflects Kimmel, principal of Kimmel Studio Architects. “It just feels like the Chesapeake Bay.”

The Boat House Bar is open from March through November; theboathousedeale.com.

You may also like:

Backyard Oasis
Anthony Wilder Design/Build creates an inviting pool-house escape in Bethesda
East Meets West
A design team bridges continents to create a custom home in Phillips Park brimming with meticulous handiwork, indoors and out
Sun Catcher
A new, eco-friendly home perched above the Potomac forges a strong connection to nature
HOME&DESIGN, published bi-monthly by Homestyles Media Inc., is the premier magazine of architecture and fine interiors for the Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia region.

The company also publishes an annual H&D Sourcebook of ideas and resources for homeowners and professionals alike. H&D Chesapeake Views is published bi-annually and showcases fine home design and luxury living in and around the Chesapeake Bay.

The H&D Portfolio of 100 Top Designers spotlights the superior work of selected architects, interior designers and landscape architects in major regions of the US.

Stay Connected with HOME & DESIGN Newsletter

Copyright © 2021 Home & Design. All rights reserved. | Back to top