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The Best Residential Architects in Kentucky

18 Min Read

Kentucky is a place for people who want a more relaxed lifestyle. Set in a rural location, the state has gorgeous terrains, lakes, and rolling green pastures. Aside from spectacular views, the Bluegrass State has more to offer. It is known for producing world-class bourbon, hearty southern cooking, and thoroughbred horses. On top of these, Kentucky has a low cost of living, reasonable tax rates, and a fantastic educational system.

Those planning to make Kentucky their home can rely on these best residential architects. Most of these architects have Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-accredited team members and are recognized by many award-giving bodies and the press. All of these firms listed have solid portfolios and years of experience to demonstrate their expertise in the industry.


de Leon & Primmer Architecture Workshop

117 South Shelby St., Louisville, KY 40202

Setting the firm apart from others, de Leon & Primmer Architecture Workshop sees the potential in conventions. By emphasizing traditional construction methods and materials, the firm creates inspired designs connected to culture. The firm enhances its outputs by using research and investigation. This enables it to develop designs informed by place, time, and local traditions. 

The firm has its own traditions, too. A huge part of its traditions is its collaborative design. This collaborative tradition was started by co-founders Roberto de Leon, Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (FAIA), and Ross Primmer, AIA. Both masters in architecture hailing from Harvard University, de Leon and Primmer combine their ideas to accomplish a range of small and large-scale projects. Under their leadership, they have completed many award-winning urban and rural projects and gained press for the firm. Some publications that featured the firm are Dwell, Architect Magazine, and Zawód: Architekt. 

One of the firm’s award-winning designs is the Green Residence in Kentucky. In 2015, it won the AIA Kentucky Merit Award. This green home showcases a charming, traditional design with sustainable features. Most prominent is the house’s glassed section, allowing light and heat to flow efficiency in the home.


Gibson Taylor Thompson Architecture & Design

169 N. Limestone, Lexington, KY 40507

Gibson Taylor Thompson Architecture & Design adapts traditional methods to the modern world. Drawing inspiration from both traditional and contemporary styles, the firm creates unique residential and commercial structures. Based in Kentucky, the firm is largely influenced by the states’ history and landscape. Inspired by a cultural and environmental context, the firm meshes new technology to enrich its architectural services. The firm applies this approach in all its projects including urban renovations and rural estate construction.

Displaying the firm’s capability to bring traditional homes into the 21st century is this Isenhour Renovation. Located in Lexington, this home was a classic mid-century estate. Originally designed by Richard B. Isenhour, a modernist architect practicing in Kentucky in the ‘60s and ’70s, the house already featured geometrical and linear elements. In the renovation, the firm enhanced the house by adding updated glass features, allowing residents to fully immerse themselves in the lakefront view while providing a much better thermal envelope. This renovation was made successful by using more resilient materials, keeping the home’s elegance yet staying in touch with its modernist roots and with its bucolic surroundings.

Gibson Taylor Thompson Architecture & Design is led by principals Baron Gibson, Darren Taylor, and Vincent Thompson. All are University of Kentucky graduates and manage operations out of the firm’s Lexington office.


Nomi Design

1584 Delaware Ave., Lexington, KY 40505

A 2017 AIA Kentucky Merit Award winner for residential category, Nomi design is a highly-acclaimed firm based in Central Kentucky. It built its reputation by creating livable, pleasurable, client-centered spaces. Established in 1989, the firm has built many fabulous residential, commercial, and institutional structures. In creating these structures, the firm believes that even the smallest details are important. A table or a chair can drastically change the look of a home. Thus, the firm has a fabrication department, allowing it to reinvent design through crafting.

The firm’s top-notch designs have been featured in many publications including the Ace Weekly, UKNow, Lexington Herald Leader, and Courier Journal. A sample of its excellent work is the Fayette Park renovation and addition project. For this project, the home reimagines a Richardsonian/Romanesque house built in the 1890s. The home is painted fresh with white and gray tones, giving it a new, clean look. The additions and modifications are expertly done, providing increased ceiling height and more spacious areas in the home. A total of 800 square feet has been added to the 4500-square-foot house. 

Leading the firm in providing exceptional services is Matthew Brooks, AIA. Brooks is an alumnus of the University of Kentucky and has licenses in Kentucky, New York, Indiana, and Nevada. Under his leadership, the firm provides designs that are socially, environmentally, and financially sustainable.


integrity Architecture

2414 Palumbo Dr. Suite 125, Lexington, KY 40509

For integrity Architecture, integrity is a lifestyle. It serves as the firm’s guiding principle in its architecture services and business strategy. Founded in 2011, the firm has consistently upheld accountability in all projects. For this reason, it has gained the trust of many clients. The firm operates under one goal: to exceed client expectations. To do so, the firm understands the vision of the clients and offers its expertise in designing homes. 

A sample project that benefited from this collaborative approach is the Gallery House. The owners’ vision is to create a home showcasing their modern art and furnishing collection. Throughout the process, the firm communicated with the owner and the construction team to deliver a contemporary home that answers the brief. The home features white wall finishes and museum-grade details, creating a gallery-like look. Through these design elements, the pieces of art and furnishings take center stage. The unique look of the home becomes art itself. 

By listening to clients, integrity Architecture creates art. The firm’s creative designs have rightfully earned features in magazines like the Lexington Herald Leader, The Lane Report, and Richmond Register. Directing the firm’s inspired portfolio are principals Joey Nolasco, AIA, CID and Joe Rasnick, AIA.


Pohl Rosa Pohl

620 Euclid Ave. Suite 301, Lexington, KY 40502

Founded in 1992, Pohl Rosa Pohl focuses on environmental stewardship and community service. These goals drive the firm’s team of creative artists and makers to excel in architecture and design. The firm fosters a collaborative environment where each can share ideas and inspire one another to create impactful results.

Showcasing the firm’s sustainable approach is the Ingram house. In this project, the firm incorporates energy recovery ventilation and triple-glazed windows into the design. These features improve energy efficiency and air and heat flow in the house. For its highly environment-friendly features, the house has received LEED-gold certification. Incorporating function with form, the firm designed a contemporary home with a sophisticated look. 

The New York Times has recognized the firm’s reliability in creating stunning, sustainable homes. Guiding the firm in staying true to its environmental design efforts is Clive Pohl, AIA, LEED AP (BD+C). Pohl is a University of Washington master’s degree graduate. In his 35 years of industry experience, he has been consistently fueled by the desire to take care of the environment through progressive design.


WorK Architecture + Design

1122 Rogers St., Louisville, KY 40204

Established in 2013, WorK Architecture + Design is an energetic firm excited to fulfill each project’s maximum potential. For the firm, any project has the potential to surprise, inspire, and exceed expectations. Each project has the potential to use local resources and be sustainable. All these are possible with proper research and creativity. 

One of the firm’s most creative designs is the Norton Children’s Hospital Foundation Home. Designed as a prize for a fundraiser, this quirky, Second Empire home surprises everyone as soon as they step in. Inside the house is a modern, elegant interior featuring white and gray tones mixed with clean lines. It is a stark contrast to the home’s exterior facade built with red bricks, a Mansard roof, and decorative details. Ultimately, the house is designed to facilitate convenient living through its open-concept layout and modern finishes. 

WorK Architecture + Design is co-founded by Mitchell Kersting and Tyler Watkins. Kersting influences the firm’s sustainable efforts as a LEED AP. Both Kersting and Watkins are graduates of the University of Kentucky. Together, they bring energy and inspiration to produce the firm’s unique designs and top-notch architecture services.


Guyon Architecture

507 West Main St., Lexington, KY 40507

Founded in ​​1985, Guyon Architecture is a highly-acclaimed firm in Kentucky. It is a 13-time recipient of AIA Kentucky’s Excellence in Architectural Design. Headed by Scott Guyon, AIA, LEED AP, this multi-disciplinary firm receives plenty of recognition for its constant pursuit of beauty. Guyon believes that there is beauty in architecture. It is a form of poetry found in places and spaces. If poetry uses words, architecture uses materials, light, and design to create art. Guided by this belief, the firm accomplishes outstanding projects that add value to a place and improve people’s lives. This belief also guides the firm’s team to relentlessly work to produce superior-quality output within budget and schedule. 

One of the firm’s proudest residential designs is the Dickson Residence. Sitting on an elevated location, the home allows owners to wake up to magnificent views. Guyon Architecture took full advantage of this opportunity by designing a simple-looking, yet complex home. The house features large glass windows blurring the line between the indoors and outdoors. This indoor-outdoor theme continues by using natural elements like wood and stone in the home’s interior. Another continuing theme in the design is meshing form and function. A fireplace serves as a central feature and a heating solution during Kentucky’s winter months. Outdoor, the noticeable shed roof is a cost-effective design choice that gives the home a contemporary look while preventing water pooling.


Bayus Design Works

13050 Magisterial Dr. Ste. 102, Louisville, KY 40223

Established in 1981, Bayus Design Works makes providing high-quality services its business. Whether it be a residential, commercial, or institutional project, the firm promises to deliver excellent services. Its many awards prove the firm’s dedication to any kind of project, like the 2001 ABC Award of Merit for Hurstbourne Country Club. In business for over four decades, the firm has the right expertise to offer a variety of services. Its services include conceptual design, design development, and construction administration. Since it has been around for many years, the firm has established partnerships with experts on construction-related engineering services. 

Bayus Design Works’ exceptional services are directed by Anthony J. Bayus, AIA, president of the firm. A master’s graduate of the University of Cincinnati, Bayus is a reputable architect that served as AIA Chapter President in 1985. He maintains his reputation by making sure that his firm delivers quality services on time and within budget. The firm’s superior services are displayed in the Scott Residence in Lebanon, Kentucky. For this project, a modern home is constructed with hints of a Cape Cod style. On the exterior, the home prominently features steep-gable roofs that are distinctly Cape Cod. The design is also made unique through the many large modern windows surrounding the home.


One World Architecture

414 Baxter Ave. Suite 101, Louisville, KY 40204

One World Architecture approaches projects by harmonizing aesthetic and function. By being sensitive to the needs of its clients, the firm develops uniquely wonderful designs. In bringing its designs to life, the firm believes that a strong collaborative relationship must be established between consultants and contractors. Through these strategies, the firm flawlessly accomplishes residential, commercial, and institutional projects. With licenses in Kentucky, California, Illinois, and Tennessee, the firm’s expert services reach many clients all over the U.S.

In Kentucky, the firm took care of the Hillcrest Residence. Providing addition and renovation services, the firm transformed a 1920s-era stucco cottage while preserving its Mediterranean character. With the firm’s expertise, a great room, a master suite, as well as a porch and terrace have been seamlessly added to the original house. Connecting these additions are select color schemes. In the exterior facade, the Mediterranean inspiration continues through its Tuscan color tones. Inside, a more vibrant palette brings a more lively appeal to the space.


Established in 2006, OWA has accomplished many residential projects in varying styles. These include traditional, Tudor, and Arts and Crafts styles. The firm’s flexibility comes from the leadership of Ken Parel-Sewell, NCARB, LEED AP. Parel-Sewell has been in the business for over 20 years. He is an alumnus of Ball State University with degrees in architecture and environmental design.


VBNA

640 South Fourth St., Louisville, KY 40202

Recipient of AIA Kentucky’s Distinguished Firm Award 2005, VBNA is an award-winning firm that treats clients as partners. In the business since 1991, the firm has engaged clients to be part of the design process of their homes. Whether it be traditional or contemporary, the firm values a client’s vision. Combined with the expertise of its professional team, the firm’s client-centric approach results in outstanding homes in Louisville and surrounding areas. Guiding this firm to produce its distinct designs is Patrick Blackburn, AIA, LEED AP. Blackburn is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. 

One of the firm’s most interesting designs is the Mount Crested Butte House. Surrounded by expansive views of the mountain, the home reflects the look of its environment. The exterior facade is built with stacks of Colorado stones and Cypress siding boards, making the house look organic to the site. Inside, the home is divided into four areas: the garage and office, the dining room, the master bedroom, and additional bedrooms. All these rooms center around the main living area containing the kitchen. As a home situated near the mountains, the home provides an allowance for off-grid living. A solar panel system is installed to provide electricity and hot water. This home is distinctly beautiful and highly efficient.


JH Designs

12804 Creekbend Court, Prospect, KY 40059

Jason Hoppe and his firm, JH Designs, put emphasis on seamless designs. Hoppe, an architecture and urban planning alumnus of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, believes that it is possible to make the old and the new indistinguishable. To achieve this, Hoppe determines the right material, proportions, and style for a project. Through smart selection, one-of-a-kind designs are achieved. In renovations and additions, a seamless approach is especially important. Through this approach, any new room addition or renovation feels natural to the original space. 

Lot 855 @ Norton Commons, Kentucky showcases how the firm expertly meshed traditional and modern elements in the design. Outside, the home features a traditional facade with window shutters and a covered porch. Indoors, traditional design elements like the grand staircase continue, blended with modern touches found in the kitchen’s state-of-the-art appliances. Another modern design element is its open-concept layout connecting the kitchen, dining, and living room on the lower floor. The house effortlessly connects to the environment, too, through its simple yet gorgeous landscaping. 

Serving the greater Louisville area since 2010, JH Designs have been featured by the press including Kentucky Home & Gardens, Louisville Business Journal, and HGTV Gardens.


Hubbuch & Co

324 W. Main St., Louisville, KY 40202

Established in 1933, Hubbuch & Company is the oldest firm on the list. The firm gives plenty of reasons why many choose to do business with it over the past 88 years. First, it listens to clients’ vision to create designs based on their preferences. Second, it gives the same attention to detail to any kind of project, big or small. Third, it is an experience-rich firm with amazing talent. Lastly, its pool of designers and architects has always been enthusiastic and excited to create stunning designs. 

The firm’s enthusiasm for producing outstanding results is influenced by principal architect Glenn H. Hubbuch, AIA, NCARB, CID. Hubbuch has expertise in architecture and interior design. He headed the Summer Wind Farm project in Scott County, Kentucky. Featuring a Colonial Revival Style, the 20,930-square-foot mansion showcases towering columns in the main entrance. The massive home has an equally expansive terrace and large windows facing the gorgeous waterfront views. 

Based in Louisville, Hubbuch & Company has become one of the most reliable architects in the United States. A multidisciplinary firm, the firm is ready to provide cost-effective, functional design solutions to its valuable clients.


Foxworth Architecture

903 Lydia St., Louisville, KY 40217

Foxworth Architecture explores design at all scales and project types with a focuses on technical aspects of architecture. The firm’s technical expertise is combined with years of industry experience to provide outstanding services to our clients through attention to detail, site and budgets.

One of firm’s unique projects is the Field House. With a total budget of $300,000, the firm was asked design a guesthouse and a multipurpose barn. The firm’s unique solution was to create a hybrid project with a living unit inside the large open multipurpose space. The multipurpose, barn-like space allows for family gatherings, work, entertaining, and play. This one-of-a-kind project was created in partnership with Rundell Ernstberger Associates and Lenfert Construction Inc.

Mark Foxworth AIA, LEED AP, leads the firm with his 22 years of design and technical experience in commercial, entertainment, healthcare, and residential architecture. A graduate of the University of Cincinnati, Foxworth is a registered architect with licenses in Indiana and Kentucky.


Burrus Architecture & Design, LLC

3 Anchorage Pointe, Louisville, KY 40223  

Founded by University of Kentucky alumnus, Greg Burrus, AIA, Burrus Architecture & Design showcases an amazing range in home styles. Whether it be a shingle-style, traditional, or modern home, the firm has the expertise to execute a project right. Since Burrus started the firm in 1988, he has built many homes and commercial establishments in Louisville and surrounding areas. His goal has always been to fulfill his client’s goals. In doing so, he creates marvelous residential and commercial architecture. It is especially easy to do projects with Burrus as he knows architecture.

Benefiting from Burrus’ expertise is the Oval Park House. For this project, Burrus created a modern colonial home with traditional features and modern configurations. In the exterior, features of a traditional colonial home like a brick façade and chimney on top are seen. It is a rectangular, two-story home much like colonial homes in the past. But Burrus makes the residence unique by placing its front door on the side, contrary to traditional homes with the main door at the center. Inside, it is more modern than traditional. The house features modern kitchen equipment as well as a fully-functioning home theater.


Bailey Associates

1536 Lytle St., Louisville, KY 40203

Established in 1985, Bailey Associates specializes in preserving traditional and historic structures. With more than 36 years in the industry, Bailey Associates is aware of the contribution the construction industry makes in landfills. For the firm, preserving old buildings produces less construction waste and is the best way to create green buildings. Mark Bailey, the firm’s principal, pushes this goal in every single and multifamily project the firm handles. Under his leadership and displayed expertise in historic renovation and adaptive reuse, the firm has received many recognitions over the years. One of these is the 2005 Preservation Kentucky Award from the Associated General Contractors of Kentucky. 

Based in Louisville, Kentucky, the firm has accomplished many projects of differing size, scale, and budget. It can transform structures that others may deem too damaged to salvage. The firm saves as many buildings as it can because they are symbols of the community’s history. For the firm, these historical buildings need to receive the respect they deserve. 

Myles Residence is a project showcasing the firm’s dedication to historic preservation. This traditional colonial home stands tall, representing the nostalgic memories of the past. The residence features a red brick exterior facade and chimneys on top of its slate-tiled roof. At the center, a portico welcomes guests and homeowners into the expertly preserved residence.


Timothy R. Winters, Architect

8009 New La Grange Rd. #8, Louisville, KY 40222

University of Kentucky alumnus Timothy R. Winters founded his firm in 1988 intending to create classic, timeless designs. Winters wants to bring back the glory days of residential architecture, much like how it was back in the 1900s. Part of his goal is providing renovation and addition services to Louisville’s original classic homes. His process involves making modifications that blend seamlessly to the existing structure. 

For Winters, gaining a client’s trust is a privilege. It is, thus, the firm’s mission to make use of this opportunity to impress clients through great architecture. One of the firm’s impressive works is the New Riverside Residence. This Classical Revival home features a porch and a balcony directly facing the riverfront. It is a simple yet refined home designed to marvel at the beauty of nature. The street-facing entrance features a portico and window shutters, welcoming guests and residents to the classic home. 

Each house the firm designs is a tribute to its homeowners, architects, and contractors. For this reason, one can only expect top-notch craftsmanship and attention to detail in all Timothy R. Winters’ projects. The firm’s superior quality projects have landed features in Southern Living, Southern Accents, Louisville Magazine, and Courier-Journal.


Frank Pierce Architecture

1251 South Fourth St. #203, Louisville, KY 40203

A Texas Tech University alumnus, Frank Pierce established Frank Pierce Architecture with a focus on refined, elegant architecture. His goal is to create never-before-seen structures built on a grand scale. In Kentucky, he has built many homes based on this premise. He has designed many custom residences with respect to the clients vision and preferences. Renovation and addition is in his wheelhouse, providing homeowners with a different kind of living environment that uplifts daily lives. 

In creating grand homes, Pierce focuses on classical designs with contemporary features. His mission is to impress as well as create functional designs that withstands generations. He uses his technical expertise and construction knowledge to fulfill this mission. With tireless enthusiasm, Pierce creates timeless designs that offer exquisite details seen in both interiors and exteriors. 

Above, a sample of Frank Pierce Architecture’s design is shown. This masterpiece exhibits a seamless blend between traditional and modern dwelling. The team designed a modern floor plan intertwined with traditional elements making this home a perfect reflection of the owner’s style. The design also includes details like a large fluted Temple of the Wind columns on the front poch, exterior Flemish bond brick pattern, chamfered brick quoins and a water table. Every part of this home flows harmoniously from the the sophisticated living to its spacious outdoor.


rc3, Inc.

3269 Elmhurst Court, Lexington, KY 40517

A LEED-accredited firm, rc3, Inc. specializes in sustainable architecture and construction. Established in 2000, the firm combines traditional and modern methods to achieve environment-friendly designs. It embraces cutting-edge technology as well as locally-sourced materials in its residential designs. As a LEED AP, D. Craig Rushing makes sure that the firm’s sustainable goals are met. Using his design and architecture degrees from the University of Kentucky and Clemson University, Rushing designs and builds contemporary and traditional homes in Kentucky and Florida.

A sample of the firm’s environment-conscious designs is the Shield House. The house features reclaimed materials including timbers collected from a 1790s barn. Combining contemporary materials like steel and glass to the reclaimed wood and stone, the home has a modern yet organic look. Going beyond form, the house contains energy-efficient and human-friendly features. Using low VOC finishes, the house assures a safe, healthy living space for its residents. Residents get to enjoy a spring-fed water supply, and a passive solar orientation that efficiently reduces the house’s heating and cooling loads. 

Author

  • Shahe Demirdjian

    Shahe is an Editor at Home Builder Digest with around four years of experience as a writer and editor in the construction space. Shahe has always had a huge interest in commercial/residential construction and real estate. On top of his experience at Home Builder Digest, he has two years of experience as a Construction Partner Specialist at BuildZoom and six years of experience as a licensed real estate agent. In his work, he takes advantage of his expertise to take complex technical jargon from those realms and transform them into accessible, engaging content, blending his business administration expertise with a degree from Arizona State University with his experiential insights. Expertise: Architecture, Home Design and Build, Home Remodeling Key Highlights: Arizona Real Estate - Licensed Salesperson Education: Arizona State University - Bachelors in Business Administration