A Teacher’s Boat-Inspired Machiasport Home Is On Point

Perched on a bluff on Howard Cove, the folded-in A-frame conjures a grounded ship.

Phil Rose's Machiasport prow-shaped A-frame
Photo by Jeff Roberts
By Sarah Stebbins
From the Fall 2023 issue of Maine Homes by Down East

After Phil Rose retired from teaching high-school English, he launched a boat-delivery service and, in 2000, built himself a house shaped like a prow. Perched on a bluff on Machiasport’s Howard Cove, where the Rose family has summered for more than a century, the folded-in A-frame is surrounded by granite outcrops and blueberry bushes that “emerge from the house like a wake,” says Phil’s son, Rich, who now owns the place with his wife, Julie. By contrast, the opposing façade is a simple gabled box, amplifying the drama when you round the “hull.” After Phil passed away, in 2011, Rich and Julie brought in Marshfield contractor Donald Cole Jr., who said, “As an English-teacher-carpenter, I give your father an A-minus,” Rich remembers. “Grading him as an actual carpenter, I might not be so generous.” The couple installed a foundation, finished the crude interior, and cut a network of trails on the property’s 12 acres. But Phil’s expression of a grounded ship remains the most enchanting feature. “If you’re in the second-floor bedroom during a storm, the waves come up and you can’t see the cliff,” Rich says. “Then you’re on the vessel.”

May 2024, Down East Magazine

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