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Prior to Hurricane Ivan (September 11, 2004), Phil and Nancy lived in a four bedroom house on the Caribbean Island of Grand Cayman that they were happy with; however during Hurricane Ivan, the roof came off and the house’s metal frame twisted. Phil and Nancy were immediately homeless after the storm, but not property-less; they moved into a 3 room cottage where they have been living for the past 7 years.

After some time passed by, they decided to look for a new house, but after spending time researching many homes on the island, they couldn’t find a home that suited them, so they decided to build. But the question was, what were they going to build?

Phil and Nancy hired an architect friend to design their new home and came up with a 3 story design that passed through planning. But prior to submitting to the Island’s Building Control Unit (BCU), they sat down with a Quantity Surveyor and he showed them that they were standing on a financial precipice, so they backed off. More time passed by and eventually the couple decided to come up with an alternative design. Nancy spent time researching small house plans on the Internet and one of the first plans that popped up was Davis Frame’s Japanese Tea House. Nancy thought, “Oh, that’s nice,” and continued her research.

Phil and Nancy drew, printed and adjusted many self-designed floor plans. They wanted to get their thoughts and ideas in order before again involving an architect to design their home. The first time they began the design process, they were not sure what they were looking for, but this time they had a pretty good idea. Phil and Nancy spent many nights tweaking many of the plans they found online. They would sit down and discuss the plans they tweaked, put the plans away, and look at them a couple of weeks later. Sometimes after revisiting they would tweak again and other times they would start all over. Finally, they chose the Japanese Tea House and decided this was the plan they wanted to work with.

cayman-islands-timber-frame

Their next step was to meet with the Quantity Surveyor to decide if the Tea House would work on their difficult site. After concluding that the one level design would work, Phil and Nancy called Davis Frame Company to discuss the Japanese Tea House. Phil says after looking around the web, it got a little intimidating to find a company that he could trust and find reputable. Phil decided to visit New Hampshire in April of 2010 to make sure Davis Frame was the real deal. After visiting the Davis Frame headquarters, Phil found the staff to be professional, friendly and offered a quality product; and after having many good conversations, Phil and Nancy knew Davis Frame was a good fit.

Next, Phil and Nancy hired a local Architect, and using Davis Frame’s Japanese Tea House floor plan as the starting point, worked with the design to fulfill their vision. Phil and Nancy wanted 3 pods, pod 1 featuring the master bedroom suite, pod 2 would be the main living space, and, pod 3 would feature two guest bedrooms pod. After living in a 3 room cottage for 7 years, Phil and Nancy knew they wanted to build a very nice home with everything they wanted, opting for high end finishes with nice counter tops, cabinets, appliances, tile and a nice large deck with an in ground pool that looks right over the ocean.

After finishing the plans, Phil and Nancy submitted their plans to the planning board; this process wasn’t too difficult and went smoothly. However, the Building Control Unit (BCU) was more challenging to pass the plans. Davis Frame’s team worked with the local architect and BCU to resolve the issues they had with the plans. The plans were approved, and the Davis Frame crew got to work crafting the timbers for Phil and Nancy’s new home. Once the timbers were cut and hand finished, the package was loaded onto a flatbed truck and transported to Florida and then loaded into a shipping container. The shipping containers shipped from Florida to the Cayman Islands by boat.In November of 2011, Jeff Davis, President and co-owner of Davis Frame, flew down to Grand Cayman to advise the local crew on a proper timber frame raising. Now a few years later, we have beautiful finished photos of this gorgeous Caribbean timber frame home!

Caribbean Timber Frame Home

Photos by Pinnacle Media Group, Cayman Islands

When we asked Phil and Nancy why they chose to build a timber frame home? They said “because it’s beautiful!” Nancy grew up with hardwood floors throughout her home and never lost her love for real wood. 

Visit our Caribbean Timber Frame photo gallery to see more! 

Interested in learning more about your timber frame and post and beam homes? Call us today at 800.636.0993!

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