Skip to main content

Georgia Mountain Laurel Magazine

Eric Watson Creates Distinctive Traditional Houses In & Around Lakemont

May 02, 2016 04:59PM ● By Ryan Frisch

At an early age Eric Watson developed a fascination for drawing and designing houses. He fondly recalls the construction of his family’s home and the daily site visits he made with his father which fostered his lifelong fascination with houses.  After receiving a drawing board and drawing materials as a Christmas gift, Eric began to illustrate the fanciful houses he imagined and in so doing, solidified his dream of one day becoming an architect.

After high school, Eric attended the School of Architecture at University of North Carolina in Charlotte where he attained his undergraduate Architectural degree. After receiving a Master of Architecture degree from the Yale University School of Architecture, Eric apprenticed with a firm in New York City specializing in the design of traditional country houses and luxurious city apartments.  After a few years of working in New York, Eric moved to Vero Beach, Florida to work with an architect involved with designing houses and civic buildings in the New Urbanist resort community of Windsor.  In 1992 after receiving his architectural license, Eric started his architectural practice and opened his office in the famous New Urbanist resort town of Seaside, Florida.  Over the past 24 years, Eric has designed numerous houses in Seaside as well as in other nearby resort communities lining the Gulf of Mexico along scenic highway 30A. 

Looking for a place to escape the Florida heat and seasonal tourist crowds, Eric discovered Lake Rabun and Lakemont, Georgia. Last year, Eric designed and built his own Lakemont retreat to enjoy the area’s natural beauty, pleasant weather, and to provide a quiet place to relax and design.  Sited on a woodland hillside overlooking Lake Rabun, Eric’s house recalls the classic lake/mountain cottage with its “cottage sash” style windows, dark stained board and batten siding, and evergreen shingled roof.

Licensed in both Florida and Georgia, Eric’s versatile architectural design skills are an easy fit for clients with mountain/lakeside or beach property.  His portfolio includes an eclectic array of homes each designed and created as a direct result of the individual client requirements and building context.  Eric has always preferred a small, hand’s-on office where he can work closely with the client on the design and with the builder on the construction to ensure that each house is a high quality work of architecture.  He believes a strong relationship between himself, the client, and the builder is essential in tackling the challenge of creating a new custom designed home.

Eric's work has been featured in many well-known publications such as Architectural Digest, Southern Living, Traditional Home, as well as regional and trade publications, books, and newspapers. Eric is a member of the American Institute of Architects, the Institute of Classical Architecture, Congress for The New Urbanism, The New Urban Guild, The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, and is a Licensed Architect in Georgia, Florida, and New York.

Designing a great home in the Georgia Mountain/Lake Region provides opportunities to consider mountain and lake views, seasonal variations, physical context, and outdoor recreation.  These are all design elements to be considered as one contemplates their individual retreat.  With Eric's talents, education, and extensive experience, one can feel confident in his ability to make their dream home a reality. If planning a mountain, lake, or beach home are part of your future, Eric would be happy to talk with you.

He can be contacted by calling his Lakemont office at 706.782.1731 or his Florida office at 850.213.0004 and by e-mail at: [email protected] 

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to Georgia Mountain Laurel's free newsletter to catch every headline