A Modernized Colonial-Era Home

Updated: Jan 6

Home Automation System Design Melds Seamlessly with Modern Aesthetics

Built in 1903, this Colonial-era home underwent a significant modernization in 2006 by renowned Icelandic architect Björn Skaptason and high end residential remodelers S+H Construction. Skaptason’s work is characterized by clean lines, monochromatic tones, and an innovative approach to architecture as a work of art.

All of this is evident in this home’s renovation, which included a complete redesign of both the home’s exterior and interiors with a major focus on contemporary design features, and the integration of smart home technology. Björn Skaptason’s design style was highlighted in the home’s distinct architectural lighting, a high-contrast kitchen area, open-concept rooms, and a boutique wine cellar.

Smart Technology for Whole-Home Automation

In 2018, this historic, 7,250 square foot home came under new ownership. Despite the cutting-edge interior architecture and design, the smart technology which was installed in the original renovation lacked many new features of today’s smart home technology.

The inherited home automation system began to have equipment failures, and the new homeowners wanted a number of features available only with a modern system, so they turned to TSP and it’s expertise with the most advanced smart home systems.

After evaluating the existing system with our partners at Driscoll Electric, we decided to integrate a combination of Lutron, Savant, Meraki, Sonance, and other industry-leading smart technology solutions to solve most of the home’s problems. Rather than merely updating the aging system, we worked directly with the homeowners to completely retrofit and rebuild their entire smart home equipment and system.

A Focus on Lutron for Lighting and Shade Controls

Our team was challenged to reduce the amount of architectural lighting to better serve the design and improve upon the existing system while ensuring the homeowners retained all of the control they’d come to expect in their space. As an added layer of challenge, all of this happened while the homeowners maintained their residence in the home during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic.

From Halogen to Efficient LEDs

Featuring almost 600 architectural lights throughout the home, we focused on replacing the home’s halogen fixtures with superior efficiency LED versions and significantly decreasing wattages of the remaining luminaires. Intuitive control and efficiency were among the major goals of this project which succeeded in significantly increasing the homeowner’s control of the entire home as well as markedly reducing the environmental impact and energy costs to operate the home.

By incorporating Lutron and new LED lighting, we were successful in reducing the average light wattage by 75%. The decision to install Lutron lighting control across all 7,250+ square feet and four stories of this home was a no-brainer given their reputation for creating products that are backed by performance, dependability, and serviceability.

Providing an Upgrade Path for the Future

By upgrading the home’s shade power panel from a Lutron Sivoia QED to Lutron’s QSPS-10PNL panel, TSP Smart Spaces was able to provide an upgrade path for the home’s shades to be gradually converted to Sivoia QS motors as needed or when the older equipment fails, rather than replacing all the shade motors at once. Better yet, the conversion of shades to Sivoia QS didn't require any costly rewiring and could be easily integrated with the home's lighting controls.

Keypads Integrated with Near Invisibility

We integrated 32 HomeWorks QS Palladiom Keypads almost invisibly into the home, providing the homeowners with control over a variety of their smart home integrations, including lights, drapes, HVAC, and more. The Palladiom Keypads boasts an intuitive design that empowered the homeowner to take charge of their smart home without detracting from the interior design. By customizing the home’s keypads in each room, they were able to control the features of the home in convenient and intuitive locations.

“When putting your reputation and resources on the line over costly smart home systems, you have to be confident in the technical solutions you select. TSP wholeheartedly believes in Lutron’s vision of perfected lighting control and home automation. They work tirelessly to craft solutions and products that perform flawlessly and integrate seamlessly. They were an obvious choice to partner with on this project, with its vast quantity of lighting and shading with precision control.” - Aaron Stallings, Director of Smart Spaces

Home Automation System Designed for the Whole Space

Beyond lighting and shade controls from Lutron, the entire home is built to incorporate smart home technology. Savant provides integrated controls for the home’s smart TVs and their audio solutions. By utilizing a Savant IP 50 all-in-one audio package, the entire home’s audio and video capabilities are controlled from one integrated system. The AV solutions which include speakers from Sonance, televisions from Samsung and LG, and 4K Apple TV, are all accessible via voice control, mobile device, or one of the home’s 8 Savant Pro remotes.

To provide physical security to the home, we installed a 2N IP Verso security system that provided a security camera feed and an RFID access point. The IP Verso system integrates with the Savant controls and the Lutron Palladiom keypads in the home so the owners can view their security camera or allow access to their home from wherever they are in the world at any given time.

Project Specifics

  • 1 - Lutron HomeWorks QS Processor and Connect Bridge

  • 1 - Lutron HQ-HWI-LX Link Translator for QED Shades to work with QS Processor

  • 1- Lutron QSPS-10PNL Shade Power Panel for a gradual transition to Sivoia QS motors

  • 42 - Lutron DIN Rail Adaptive and 6 x Lutron DIN Rail Softswitch Power Modules, retrofit into existing lighting panels to reduce construction and wiring costs

  • 32 - Lutron Palladiom Keypads

  • 1 - Savant PROAV 7-source audio input IP transmitter

  • 2 - Savant IP Audio 50 with Savant Music Server

  • 8 - Savant Pro Remotes

  • 2 - Apple TV 4K set top boxes

  • 1 - LG Electronics 55” CX Class 4K OLED TV

  • 3 - Samsung 49” Class 4K QLED TVs

  • 2 - Sonance 6.5” In-Ceiling Speakers

  • 27 - Savant wireless thermostats

  • 5 - Meraki WiFi 5 wireless access points

  • 3 - Meraki MS120 Switches

  • 1 - 2N IP Verso RFID keypad, and camera access system.

End Result

A smart home is only as good as the sum of its parts and this is perfectly exemplified in this contemporary colonial home. Technologies from Lutron, Savant, Meraki, and other industry leaders came together to provide an integrated and intuitive experience for all 7,250 square feet of this home. By taking advantage of the personalization options smart home technology offers, we were able to blend the new smart technology with the design concept of the home, creating a seamless experience for the homeowners in every space. The result is a home automation system design that will stand the test of time and create unique technology experiences for all that use the space.

TSP did an amazing job in dealing with the complexity of converting from a complicated legacy system and they were wonderful to work with. The new system is a huge improvement over what we had before. - Homeowner

Start your Smart Home Journey

Ready to transform your home into a smart space? Begin your smart home automation journey today by contacting our home automation team.

About TSP Smart Spaces

At TSP Smart Spaces, we combine luxury design aesthetics with the latest in smart home automation technology. From colonial-style mansions in Boston to seaside retreats in Florida, to luxurious vacation homes in Iceland, we help bring unique technology experiences to you. We empower homeowners with our home automation system design to control their home’s by controlling everything from lights and shades to audio and visual, all from a singular device or voice command. Our proven Design, Build, and Support process ensures we are with you from the beginning of your smart home journey and beyond.

Find Us

1280 Massachusetts Ave.

Cambridge, MA 02138

617 267 3030




1280 Massachusetts Ave

Cambridge, MA 02138 

Tel: 617 267 3030

Email: smart@tsp.space

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