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A Love of The Land Takes Rhode Island’s Dan Paquette on the Journey

Dan Paquette’s roots are in Rhode Island. The De La Salle Academy graduate studied biology at Seton Hall University and then architecture at the Boston Architectural Center in the early 1970s. Following his passion for historical architecture, he made his way to Harvard’s Graduate School of Design where he studied historic preservation.

In 1975, Mr. Paquette founded Sakonnet Housesmith in Newport, Rhode Island that became Sakonnet Group. From its modest start, the group grew into a team of 45 architects, builders and development specialists to become the largest residential design and build firm in southeastern New England. Sakonnet Group was a leader in the development of post and beam construction, solar design and historic reproduction housing.

Rhode Island Innovator
Mr. Paquette was cited for his innovative work in bringing the first cluster development to Rhode Island and pioneered the concept of architecturally controlled communities. He started Paquette Design & Construction Management, which restored several historic buildings in Rhode Island including:
• Trinity Church, circa 1728
• Brick Market Building, circa 1748

DPS Sporting Club Development Company, LLC
In 1998, Paquette met Peter Pollak, one of the managing partners of DPS Sporting Club Development Company, through his friend and fellow Rhode Islander, Archie Van Buren who had purchased property on Bray’s Island from Pollak.

Pollak was looking for someone to lead the planning, architecture and development for the 2,000+ acre Ford property near Savannah, Georgia and asked Paquette if he’d be interested.

“The history of the land drew me in immediately,” Paquette said. “It was a dream project for a guy from New England, this true antebellum southern property.” Paquette became Vice President of Design & Construction for The Ford Plantation, DPS’ first foray into transforming historic properties mindfully designed sporting communities. While at The Ford Plantation, Paquette oversaw:
• Design & restoration of the Ford mansion
• Design & construction of a spa and equestrian center
• Construction of more than 60 custom homes and cottages

In 2002, Paquette was named Director of Planning & Development for all DPS projects including:
• The 2,800-acre, 500 homesite Greenbrier Sporting Club in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia,
• 554-acre, 128 homesite Snake River Sporting Club in Jackson Hole, Wyoming
• 1,100-acre, 550 homesite Turks & Caicos Sporting Club at Ambergris Cay in the British West Indies

Turks & Caicos Sporting Club at Ambergris Cay

Currently, Mr. Paquette is President of Ambergris Cay Partnership, and commutes from Rhode Island to Ambergris Cay to oversee the planning, design and construction of Turks & Caicos Sporting Club. This project, the most ambitious to date, required the creation of an entire city infrastructure and housing for more than 500 construction, management and staff. Mr. Paquette and the development team have recruited the talents of renowned architects and designers including Demetri Porphyrios who leads the design of the 50-acre marina village patterned after the island of Spetses in the Greek Isles.

Proposed amenities include:
• 5,700-foot paved jet strip
• 35-acre marina that will accommodate vessels greater than 200 feet
• Environmental Learning Center
• Members’ Lodge
• Yacht club
• Equestrian stables
• Spa

DPS develops private sporting communities on historic properties, with a commitment to preserving each property’s distinct character and environment. The company’s properties, managed by the renowned Greenbrier Resort & Club Management Company, take maximum advantage of the natural setting, while providing five-star service and outdoor activities for all ages and skill levels. Other award-winning Sporting Clubs developed by DPS include The Ford Plantation in Georgia, Deep Water Cay Club on Grand Bahama Island, The Greenbrier Sporting Club in West Virginia and Snake River Sporting Club in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Visit DPS at

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