Over the past four decades, we have built relationships with a diverse network of artisans and craftspeople, both in-house and freelance professionals. Together, we are a group of inspired collaborators who contribute their diverse talents to the design-build process. We take the journey with our clients, during which we consider everything-from traffic pathways in the kitchen, to parking the car on rainy days, to creating sunny nooks and sleeping porches. Along the way, we refresh our commitment to every project’s possibilities, again and again.
The natural outcome of attracting a great group of Maine talent has been the growth and evolution of our original business, Boothbay Home Builders, founded by Stephen Malcom in 1978. By recognizing needs and trends in the building construction business and by responding proactively to meet those needs, the construction company quickly began to grow and evolve. In 1985, an opportunity arose which led to the formation of a custom millwork shop. Working with several local craftsmen, the shop allowed the artistry and functionality of the cabinetry to personalize the interior spaces, including architectural carving as a company trademark.
As time passed, it became increasingly apparent that the successful projects were those where the builder was part of the design team at an early date. Steve recruited individuals with specialized talent in architecture, engineering and design. In Steve’s own words, “building houses is part design, part construction and a whole lot of psychology”. In 1990, Knickerbocker Group thus began offering both architecture and interior design services.
In 1993, wanting to challenge the traditional values of energy consumption, Steve built his first off-the-grid home as his private residence. This personal project ultimately influenced the direction of the company as they went on to build several off the-grid houses, including a compound at Spencer Lake that at the time had the largest photovoltaic system in the State. The company’s history in “green building” began there, but it has grown over the years to become a philosophy that incorporates all aspects of building performance.
By 1998, Knickerbocker Group recognized the need for ongoing services after construction. As projects were completed and our clients took occupancy, they turned to us with questions on maintenance, repairs, seasonal openings and closings, and other ongoing home services. Our property management group now offers a full spectrum of services, bringing peace of mind to both seasonal and year-round homeowners.
Seeing growing demand for Knickerbocker Group’s design-build model beyond the midcoast area, the company opened an office in Portland, Maine in 2012. The central location of this office has positioned the company well to offer design-build services throughout the state.
In April 2017, Knickerbocker Group was pleased to announce the transition of the company to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). After years of considerable thought and planning, Steve decided the optimal course for Knickerbocker’s future was to convey the company to its employees in the form of an ESOP. He supports this transition with the belief that Knickerbocker is what it is today due to the collective hard work, dedication, vision, and passion of its team.
Today, our campus in Boothbay is a hive of activity. Some of us are out in the field, others are in our workshops, or can be found collaborating in our design studio and showroom. Altogether, we bring great care, excitement and passion to every aspect of our work, from the inner workings of a high performing building to the finely crafted details of a custom home.