The remodeling of a Princeton home originally built in the Usonian style by an apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright has received top marks in the Qualified Remodeler Master Design Awards Contest. The renovation of 144 Drakes Corner Road, completed by Belle Mead-based architecture and construction firm Princeton Design Guild, earned gold in the “whole house more than $700,000” category.

The 1960s-era single-story home was considered a teardown, but Princeton Design Guild, led by founder and managing partner Kevin Wilkes, was able to preserve the original wood frame while adding a steel superstructure to enable to the addition of two floors above the original home.

Princeton Design Guild’s renovation, which added two stories while preserving and refurbishing the original structure.

The ground floor — once the entire house — now has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a laundry room, and a family room.

The main entry to the house, via the driveway or the newly installed two-car garage, is to the second level of the home, which features open gathering spaces and a kitchen. The top floor contains the master suite as well access to a rooftop deck.

Views from the 3,826-square-foot home, which sits on 2.84 acres, are of the nearly 100-acre Woodfield Reservation.

“We are honored to receive this distinction,” Wilkes said in a statement. “The award acknowledges excellence, and we are very pleased to be recognized for our Drakes Corner Road design.”

Wilkes, a 1983 alumnus of Princeton University, founded Princeton Design Guild in 1985. The firm has worked on more than 600 custom residences in the Princeton area.

The renovated home at Drakes Corner Road is now on the market, listed by Jennifer Curtis of Callaway Henderson Sotheby’s. Asking price: $2,095,000. Visit

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