November 29, 2020

Seagrape House wins design prize

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The Cayman Society of Architects, Surveyors & Engineers (CASE) and the Cayman Contractors Association (CCA), in conjunction with His Excellency Governor Duncan Taylor, CBE are proud to announce the recipient of the 2011 Governor’s Award for Design and Construction Excellence in the Cayman Islands.

The Governor selected Seagrape House – a residential project by John Doak Architecture, as this year’s winner. The design team, including Doak himself, was presented with this award at a ceremony at the Governor’s House on Wednesday 30th November. In attendance were His Excellency, Governor Duncan Taylor CBE and Mrs. Taylor, Honourable Minister Mike Adam, members of CASE, the CCA and other leading representatives from the construction industry, and members of the media.

Seagrape House was selected by His Excellency from a shortlist of six projects which included; Kirkfreeport Bayshore Mall by The Burns Connolly Group, Lighthouse Point by Jay Easterbrook, an Eco-Friendly Residence by Icon Architecture, a renewable energy home by Island Drafting Engineering Ltd., and Trevose House – also by John Doak Architecture.

In his acceptance speech John had this to say, “I am extremely honoured to have received this award. Mr. and Mrs. Morse presented me with their vision- a traditional Caribbean style home, which utilised renewable energy resources and set in the undisturbed surroundings of the sea grapes of the Frank Sound beach-ridge,” said John Doak, Architect and winner of the Governor’s Award. “It was a pleasure for me and my associate John Yeo to work with the Morses, and their construction team of Smart Construction and Vigoro Nursery. It is always a pleasure when a client declares that their dream home turned out to be something they never dreamed of!!”

Homeowner Janet Morse was also present to accept the award alongside John and was ecstatic that Seagrape and John’s hard work were recognised. “John Doak listened to our vision and designed a plantation style home that featured renewable energy and a beautiful garden”, states Morse. “The entire team seamlessly incorporated cutting-edge renewable energy and geothermal technologies while maintaining a lush oasis outside. We can truly say this is our dream home.”

In a surprise announcement, the Governor also presented a Judge’s Commendation for Excellence in Sustainability and the Environment award to Lighthouse Point for its commitment to renewable energy. Owner, designer and builder Jay Easterbrook was on hand to accept the unexpected award. “I am honoured that Lighthouse Point has been recognized amongst such amazing projects, I would like to acknowledge the hard work of my contractors: Electra-Tech, Arch Solar, Altonda Engineering, M & R Construction and Cayman Engineering.”

Last Wednesday’s award ceremony was held to give industry representatives an exclusive preview of the short listed projects and for CASE and CCA members, distinguished guests and teams who submitted projects to discover who would become the 2011 recipient of this prestigious national Award. The six projects that were short listed were showcased to all those in attendance and each member of the winning team received a Certificate to acknowledge their achievement. The winning building will also receive a commemorative plaque and Award and Shortlist project team members will have the distinction of being able to display the Governor’s Award title and logo on their corporate and marketing materials. To view a complete listing of the short listed projects, please visit

His Excellency is endorsing the Award developed by CASE and the CCA to recognise the high standard of design in the Cayman Islands. It aims to encourage, foster and maintain innovation, sustainability and excellence in the Cayman Islands construction industry. The projects were judged on whether and to what extent the design and construction of the nominated project displayed the following attributes: Creativity and Innovation, Sustainability and the Environment, Value, Buildability and Cultural Response.

Sponsors of the Governor’s Award include: Cayman National, AL Thompson’s Home Depot, CL Flowers and Sons, MC2 Design Group, Real Life Magazine, National Concrete, Cox Lumber Co., and Cayman First.

About the Winner: Seagrape House

  • Owner: Mr. and Mrs. Graham Morse
  • Architect: John Doak Architecture
  • Contractor: Smart Construction Management
  • Consultants: CE & S Partners (structural)
  • Jeff Demme Geothermals (renewable energy systems)
  • Mega Systems Ltd. (renewable energy systems)
  • Arista Engineering Ltd. (mechanical, electrical & plumbing systems)
  • Vigoro Nursery Ltd (landscaping)

Seagrape House is exemplary of a sustainable and storm-resistant residence that successfully responds to a tropical, preserves the natural environment, and respects the built heritage of the Cayman Islands whilst employing traditional construction techniques in addition to exploiting cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Its internal spaces and exterior elevations are reminiscent of 19th century Caribbean Great Houses, including Grand Cayman’s Pedro St. James. Verandahs on all sides provide shade, access to and from interior rooms and a pleasant stroll amongst the treetops of the overhanging sea grape trees.

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