Honeymoon Cottages


Scott Merrill

Honeymoon Cottages

Project Description

Built on the high dunes above the Gulf of Mexico, the Honeymoon Cottages, designed by Scott Merrill, were conceived to be low-impact rental cottages. Seaside developer Robert Davis wanted cottages that would appear diminutive on the beach and would have a minimal visual impact on the landscape to beachgoers. The inspiration for this type of design was the cottage that Thomas Jefferson lived in while designing and constructing Monticello in Virginia. Because Jefferson’s cottage was built into a hill it appeared to be one story from the lawn above, and two from the hillside below.

Seaside was conceived as a town that would employ and repeat certain Gulf Coast residential styles and motifs. However, with the success of Seaside, a pattern of singular custom homes emerged. The Honeymoon Cottages, as a group, were designed to ennoble the stylistic repetition on which Seaside’s aesthetic was founded and to serve as an alternative visual model for the typical street.

The Seaside Honeymoon Cottages adhere to Type V in The Code. This type is designed for large lots that can contain multiple buildings. As a requirement, the buildings in these lots must be planned as coherent groupings, and they must demonstrate the overall repetition of certain Gulf Coast residential building types. This design earned Scott Merrill the National American Institute of Architects Award of Excellence. The jury wrote that the Honeymoon Cottages “evoke the coastal architecture of the area without indulging in clichés. Demonstrating a masterful use of wood construction, the architect has created cottages that are at once familiar yet fresh.”[1]

Western Cottages:
Beachfront Cottage #12
Sweetie Pie
Beachfront Cottage #10
Gift By the Sea
Beachfront Cottage #8
Beachfront Cottage #7

Eastern Cottages:
Beachfront Cottage #6
Beachfront Cottage #5
Beachfront Cottage #4
Honeymoon Cottage
Beachfront Cottage #1

[1] Steven Brooke, Seaside (Gretna, LA: Pelican Publishing Co., 2005), 59.

Project Specifications

Scott Merrill
Building Name:
Honeymoon Cottages
Preferred Name:
Honeymoon Cottages
Code Type:
Type IV – Residential and Lodging
Start of Construction:
1988-1989; first phase
End of Construction:
1994-1995; second phase


Scott Merrill

Scott Merrill


Scott Merrill opened his practice in Vero Beach, Florida in 1990 to work on the new Duany Plater-Zyberk master plan for the project of Windsor. Since then he has taken on two partners: George Pastor in 1997 and David Colgan in 1999. Pastor and Merrill operate out of the office in Vero Beach, while Colgan operates the satellite office in Atlanta, Georgia.

The firm works on projects of all scales and types in a variety of locations. Their portfolio includes churches, town halls, mixed-use buildings, row houses, apartments, university buildings, public gardens, club master plans, and many private residences in urban sites and historic districts throughout the eastern United States. The firm has done projects around the world: in New Zealand; St. Petersburg, Russia; Abu Dhabi, UAE; London, England; Edinburgh, Scotland; Saudi Arabia and throughout the Caribbean.

Scott Merrill received a national AIA (American Institute of Architects) award for his first Seaside project in 1990, and the firm has received a total of three national AIA awards, including one in urban design for their first group of buildings and gardens. The firm has also been recognized for its designs fourteen times by the Florida AIA. The recognition has been for a wide variety of building types.

Merrill has lectured throughout the country on the firm’s design work, which has been widely published in the United States and Europe. The firm received the Arthur Ross Award from the Institute for Classical Architecture in New York, in recognition of a body of work that has contributed to traditional American design.


  • 1991 , National American Institute of Architecture Honor Award for Architecture

Archive Inventory

Seaside Archives, University of Notre Dame
  • Exterior
  • Plan
  • Exterior Views
  • Interior Views


Exterior Views

Interior Views