Johnson Residence

A Place They'll Never Forget

Client:  John and Susan Johnson


Location:  Peninsula Ridge at Lake Keowee


Building and renovating is nearly second nature for John and Susan Johnson.

“We have owned something like 17 or 18 homes up and down the East Coast,” Susan explained.

All that experience meant they knew what to look for in a homebuilder. But even the best-laid plans don’t always work out.

The Johnsons had a house on Lake Keowee. They enjoyed the location but weren’t fond of the home itself. So, they bought the lot next door and planned to build a home designed to be exactly what they wanted.

While they knew several builders from their time living in Greenville, SC, they’d heard about one in particular from a stranger they met: The Stillwater Group.

Above: A perfect home, nestled in nature’s embrace. This gorgeous house boasts floor-to-ceiling windows that invite the outdoors in. With sleek finishes and an open floor plan, it’s designed for modern living.

Johnson Residence Dining Room


A Feeling of Trust

Susan said they’ve developed a sense of how great builders operate. And one of the most important attributes is trust. The Johnsons wanted to work with someone who would keep their word.

In their interactions with CEO Brandon Eich, Susan said they sensed they could trust him immediately.

“That’s what I felt,” she said. “He kept his word. His name, his product, what he produced was imporant to him.”

MHK Architecture was designing the Johnson’s home plans, and they wanted The Stillwater Group to bring them to life.

There was just one problem. A big problem.

Johnson residence - view on Lake Keowee

Home is where the heart is. In this open and inviting living space, there’s room for gathering, eating, and relaxing together. With clean lines and neutral tones, it’s a calming oasis from busy days.


Problems with the ARB

The architectural review board didn’t approve the Johnson’s design. There were no workarounds to gain approval due to the lot’s topography. They were back to square one.

Then, they got a call from Brandon. There was a spec home available he thought they might be interested in.

There was just one other problem. The home was on Peninsula Ridge, a place Susan wasn’t interested in living. Susan said she’s learned that often, the things she said she’d never do turn out to be some of the best decisions in her life. So, they went and looked at the house. And the decision was made.

“We called Brandon within hours and said, ‘We’ll take it.”

This stunning kitchen blends sleek modern design with minimalist style for a fresh and inviting space. The crisp cabinetry and shiny stainless steel appliances create a clean, contemporary look. It’s the perfect blend of form and function.

Johnson residence - Kitchen


Putting the pieces together

While it may not have been Susan’s ideal location, there was much to like about the home and the lot. It was designed by the same architect who drew their previous home plans.

The build was at a stage where the Johnsons could incorporate their ideas and design requests to customize it.

“We took pieces of the house we were going to build and put it into this one and loved it,” Susan explained.

One of the home’s standout features is the deck and screen porch, which are all on one level. And the lot had a gradual slope, making lake access very easy.

Susan enjoyed designing and said the plans left her enough room to add some personal creative touch.

Every build has its challenges. While the Johnsons said they had no issues working through things that came up, one moment stood out. A mistake had been made when laying the tile. Susan talked with Brandon, and The Stillwater Group made it right.

“That’s where the trust comes in,” she said.

This spacious outdoor living space exudes an inviting warmth with its mix of plush seating options, fireplace and gorgeous views of the backyard pool and Lake Keowee. Whether you’re lounging fireside with a good book or hosting friends for dinner, it’s the perfect spot to unwind in style.

Johnson residence - patio


One Conversation Changes Everything.

One conversation can change everything. And that’s the case for how the Johnson’s Lake Keowee home came to be.

“Your life gets moved in a certain direction because of someone you met,” Susan said.

That direction led them to a place Susan said was special for them.

“It was the most beautiful home we’ve ever owned or will own.”

Along with enjoying the house itself, Susan said the experience working with The Stillwater Group will stay with her because of how personal it was.

“I think it was providing through the PM (project manager, Ashton Eich) a level of personal contact,” Susan explaind. “There was a person to always go back to.”

Susan said once they were in the home, a visit from Brandon stuck with her.

“I think it was after we were in and Brandon came by and just stood there and said, ‘this is just beautiful.’ His appreciation of this house and what I had done with it.”

Moments like that can forge a friendship. And for the Johnsons, it has. They’ve since sold the home but hope to have the team visit them when they’re in town. The memories of working with The Stillwater Group are now part of the Johnson’s lives.

“Building your home is very personal,” Susan said. “You invited Brandon and his team into your life. By building with them, they’re now part of your life. He’s entwined with the memories you’ll create in the house. And there’s an appreciation for that for us.”

Johnson Residence pool and view of Lake Keowee

The custom pool provides the perfect centerpiece for relaxing and backyard gatherings. 


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