Dome homes often seem to have a magical quality to them, as if you’ve stumbled upon the hand-sculpted fairy-tale abode of a fictional character. The fact that this one is located at number 34 Road to Misery in Kennebunkport, Maine may make it sound like the story is going to take an ominous turn. But as it turns out, the home brought its creators the opposite of misery in the nearly 20 years since they first built it, and now they’re ready to hand it off to the next owner. The unique 43-acre dwelling is currently for sale through Coldwell Banker for $690,000, and it’s even cooler inside.
Measuring 1,477 square feet, the three-bedroom home built in 2003 is a few miles from Goose Rocks Beach in one of Maine’s most picturesque regions. Travel through the forest on a dirt road and you’ll find it tucked into a grassy clearing. It’s immediately apparent that the home’s creator, sculptor Daphne Pulsifer, is an artist. The poured concrete dome is attached to a tiny addition resembling a quaint English cottage complete with a cedar shingle roof. It’s also powered by a solar photovoltaic electrical system and a gas water heater, with well water on site, making it completely off grid.
Inside, the home is warm and charming. Pulsifer and her partner Daniel scavenged the woods for logs and branches to use as beams and columns with loads of rustic personality. Earth-tone tile floors, white plaster walls, and arched windows complement the rural setting and the sculptural, organic nature of the house. Soaring ceilings make it feel bright and airy inside, and an antique wood stove offers both heat and a cooking surface. Down the hallway, the bedrooms have boldly painted walls in contrast to all the neutral natural materials, and upstairs is a study with views of the surrounding treetops.
“I think of this home as my largest sculpture, and from the beginning we designed it with the satisfaction of knowing we were fulfilling our dream,” Pulsifer told Dwell. “This type of construction process was very new to Kennebunkport at the time, but with Daniel’s determination and my design, we navigated the permitting process and quickly began work on the site.”
The couple and their children started the house as a DIY owner-builder project, and when it was time to add the electrical and plumbing work, they consulted the Monolithic Dome Institute in Italy, Texas. If you love the look of the property, but you’re not quite ready to move to Maine, the Monolithic Dome Institute might be a great resource for building your own super-insulated, steel-reinforced concrete structure in the location of your choice. People have built domes with their help all over the United States, measuring from eight feet to 340 feet in diameter.
As for the so-called “Road to Misery,” it’ll undoubtedly find new owners very soon. With a fenced-in pasture and such a large acreage, you could build a whole compound of artsy handmade homes in whatever styles you could possibly dream up.