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DORNBRACHT | COYOTE | PORSCHE DESIGN STUDIO | FRANKE| SALGAR | LIEBHERR | BERTAZZONI Poggenpohl + Florida Designer Cabinetry 10800 Corkscrew Road Ste. 105 Estero, FL 33928 T: 239-948-9005 |

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Sky-High Miami

Denise Davies of D2 Interieurs has elevated her designs to soaring heights in this stunning Miami penthouse. Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Denise Davies


Captivating Coastal Contemporary In Naples

Matthew Kragh of MHK Architecture & Planning designs a masterful residence redefining the boundaries of outdoor living Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Kenny Siebenhar


An American Modernist Masterpiece Michael Wolk transforms Mediterranean pastiche into a paradigm of purity and style in this Boca Raton home.

Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Dan Forer

DEPARTMENTS 24 28 38 112 Front of Book.indd 15

Editors Letter Ask the Experts Kitchens and Baths

26 32 110

Melange In The Field Events


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Editor-in-Chief Matthew J. Kolk 203-820-1092 Managing Editor James Eagen Contributing Writers Deborah Brannon, Lisa Gant, Susan Heller, Pam Gersh, Anna von Stelzer-Worth, Kait Shea, Anastasia Storer Contributing Photographers Jane Beiles, Michael Biondo, Phillip Ennis, Tria Giovan, John Gruen, John Hannon, Paul Johnson, Neil Landino, Mark La Rosa, Tim Lee, Daniel Milstein, Janice Parker, Durston Saylor, Debra Somerville, Eric Striffler, Jonathan Wallen, Woodruff/Brown Photography Copy Editor Elena Serocki Graphic & Web Design East Coast Home Publishing

Publisher Shelley E. McCormick 203-545-7091 Account Manager Alessandra Flanagan Design + Decor 7485 Inspira Circle #1203 Naples, Florida 34113 Fax: 203-286-1850

Design + Decor is published six issues per year. To subscribe:; Subscriptions: one year, $28; two years, $50. Back issues can be purchased at For editorial inquiries: Editor, Design + Decor, 7485 Inspira Circle #1203 Naples, Florida 34113 or e-mail: For advertising inquiries: Please call Shelley McCormick at 203-545-7091. Reproduction whole or in part without permission is prohibited. All projects described in this publication are for private, noncommercial use only. No rights for commercial use or exploitation are given or implied. The opinions expressed by writers for articles published by Design + Decor are not necessarily those of the magazine.

EAST COAST HOME PUBLISHING 7485 Inspira Circle #1203 Naples, Florida 34113 DD-MAG.COM

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ith the season winding down, there is still work to be done. There are new emerging markets coming into our little haven of paradise here in Southwest Florida, and we have to understand the different buying patterns and design aesthetics and adjust to them. Forecasting your business profits into the seasonal three to four months is a thing of the past, and that should be something to celebrate. This is a time where there is an opportunity to make more money and grow your profit margins. That’s why it is so important to have a periodical like Design + Décor Magazine. Our publication offers fresh content to affluent readers every quarter, and also allows your brand to continually have a presence in front of them. My long-time favorite quote still rings true today: “If a luxury brand like Hermès has to advertise, what makes you think that you don’t?” It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in business or what your referral network is—both of which are important parts to the overall scheme of things—there is always a new audience available to you. That being said, our Summer issue will be the handbook for all consumers, illuminating what they need to know about custom builds, renovations and model homes and offering the latest design guides and ideas. This issue will be the go-to guide that readers will refer to again and again. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to be a part of it.

Shelley McCormick Cheers,

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- Publisher

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SALON DEL MOBILE 2019 Our Top Picks from this years Milan Design Week Produced by Editor at Large Jamie Herzlinger

Boca do Lobo The Millionaire’s Safe

Luxxu The Empire Pendant

Luxxu The Wax Wall Sconce

Boca do Lobo The Robin Mirror

Boca do Lobo The Limited Edition Newton Console

Luxxu The Gala Wall Torch


Boca do Lobo The Guggenheim Cabinet

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Boca do Lobo Pixel

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Luxxu The Guggenheim Chandelier

Luxxu The Gala Chandelier

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Please tell us about your journey into architecture. I went to school at Harvard and worked in Boston for about 10 years. Then I met Max O. Urbahn, a very prestigious architect, who encouraged me to move to Connecticut to help him develop a small firm. After a successful run of about six years, Max retired and introduced me to architect John Carl Warnecke. I joined the Warnecke organization to try to salvage a declining firm that had four offices throughout the country. I spent two years chasing work all over the country and in Europe. In 1985 I started my own firm, Charles J. Nafie Architecture + Design. My mission now is to specialize in residential design, especially here in Southwest Florida. I love it and want to continue doing more. “Timeless elegance” is my focus, striving to bring classical design into a modern lifestyle vocabulary. Our clientele in New York is often European, South American and celebrities, and/or residents of Upper East and West Side neighborhoods. I have good experience with townhouse design and, of course, multifamily apartments. My passion is doing more single-family homes in the Naples arena. Interiors play a more important role in our design, and I would like to emphasize our work in that arena as well. I recently completed two designer show houses in New York City, and I received rave reviews for both. How do you manage client expectations? 28

My firm has established itself on realizing unique specialized design projects, whether for a residence or hotel. Our greatest asset is our ability to translate the client’s objectives into a spectacular design. Many institutions hire my firm to complete the design only, with our unique ability to garner approvals from a board, student body or administration. We continue to recognize the needs of our clients and to nurture their ideas, styles and costs into a magical design. Our capabilities are always evolving, yet when a client requests classical and traditional design themes, we can incorporate those requirements into a living environment that connects the traditional building elements with the openness of a contemporary lifestyle. Timeless elegance! What is your process when working with clients? For most projects, we typically spend an exceptional amount of time in the early design process, carefully analyzing the site, program intentions and style requested by the client. We spend more time on the conceptual design, since getting that right is critical. We generate concept after concept, analyze each in meetings, and

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then refine the concepts worthy of pursuing into a final design option. We carefully articulate how our team will use that option to meet the needs of the client. Landscape architects and Interior designers work alongside us to carefully review the options and details.

ment of the climate bears a more solid building that is more drawn to the interior of a home. Florida embraces the relationship between the openness and play of light and air, offering truly magical opportunities.

Do you think you can marry the differences between the two locations? The opportunities are significant. Although we listen and direct our design to the client’s taste and goals, we do have a long history of marrying the classical building elements often requested— crown moldings, heavy base moldings, and heavier door jambs and plinths—with openness and flow of spaces. Yet clients today generally request the openness of rooms, a careful choice of sun and What is the difference between working in the Northeast and air entering the house, separation of functions by sliding pocket doors versus traditional doorways, and, most important, the defiworking in Southwest Florida? The opportunities here in Florida bring joy to my heart. Lifestyles nition and separation of public and private parts of the house. here embrace the outdoors, while the Northeast does not. Color and openness allow designers to open and release their imagina- Today a house is divided into parts for family/public and parts for privacy. Careful attention is paid to how those functions relate to tion—to truly unify the outdoors and indoors in one palette. each other and to the family. In Florida, you have another funcIn the Northeast, climate and style play a significant role in the tion, the outdoors, and how it relates to all the interior functions conceptualization of a residence or hotel. Careful acknowledge- of the house and to a major influence, the climate. We are just as intensive during the development of the construction drawings and details, right through construction. There are so many important issues to recognize during construction that we insist on being actively involved. The opportunity to correct mistakes or change details is critical to the ultimate success of a project.


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What have been the watershed of your practice? well. “I’m moments loving the texture looks coming out that are really It was leaving Boston where I was comfortable making significant creating dimension. Right now and we have some incredible tile achievements to join Max Urbahn, who introduced me to a whole new collections—Caprice, Illuminary, Cascading Waters—that level of the design profession. When intriguing I became shapes, a partner John Carl Warare in unique, andinadd beautiful color necke’s firm, I traveled and from the East to the West Coast and negotiated visual texture to the kitchen.” projects in Europe. I gained knowledge and the appreciation of marketing and managing multi-located Those opportunities work in inpopthe Bolderoffices. contrast and darker palettes are alsotogaining highest level of our practice and complete work throughout the country ularity, according to Summer of Cambria. “We’re seeing would have never been offered to menew if Iand didadventurous not leave designs, Boston.and we’ve nosome beautiful ticed homeowners gravitating towards darker countertops,” she says. “Our Blackpool Matte and our just-launched Black Marble are both becoming very popular as a way to Charles J Nafie Architecturemake + Design a dramatic statement in the kitchen. It’s a definite Charles J Nafie departure from the lighter grays and whites of the past.” New York With multiple kitchen islands also growing in popularity 1390 Lexington Avenue in kitchen design, “we’re seeing homeowners using differNew York, NY 10128 ent colors and materials on countertop surfaces,” Summer 212.922.9810 says. “They might have a solid color along the perimeter, and then a coordinating design on the island.” Florida 649 Fifth Avenue South Porcelain Perfection Naples, Florida 34102 We’d be remiss if we didn’t give a special shout-out to 239.465.0229 this material, which looks to be on everyone’s minds, and no wonder: it just might be the most versatile material on


Florida Designer Gallery

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the market right now. And when we say versatile, we mean it: porcelain works well for flooring, backsplashes, countertops and even walls— and it’s now making its way into the

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MONUMENTAL MASTERY Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild creates New World masterpieces Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth | Photography by Karen Shulman, Carlos Domenech C.J. Walker Photography and Sargent Architectural Photography


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here are entrepreneurs and then there are visionaries. Tommy Riley of Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild is unequivocally the latter. Indeed, a guild is more than a business—it’s an association, a fraternity of craftspeople who are dedicated to their chosen art and a greater mission. Some would argue that guilds are obsolete in our technology-driven world. Tommy understands that the demand for beauty and quality craftsmanship cannot be met through automated means alone; it requires the head, hand and heart of the craftsperson. “My inspiration for starting this company was my admiration for the people who are blessed with the God-given talent for creating,” Tommy notes. Founded in 1991 with a small group of dedicated fine cabinetmakers and finishers, the guild today boasts a team of 70 craftspeople and support staff. Initially interested in pursuing a career with the New York Police Department, Tommy relocated to Naples, FL, and eventually became involved in furniture restoration. In very experiential fashion, through stripping and refinishing furniture, he was able to discern the characteristics of quality pieces. This is where his admiration for the craftspeople grew. “Clients at this time were looking for people who could match the finish of existing pieces,” recounts Tommy. “The craftspeople I was working with had immense talents, but they didn’t want to deal with the business side—the salesmanship, the price-quoting and the organizational side that was required to promote and support their craft.” Design + Decor

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Matthew, Thomas and Benjamin Riley

Nurturing Excellence He hired four craftspeople who formed his core team. “Initially we focused on work that was from the windows in, which is essentially about the world of fit and finish. We built our business backwards, from the finishing side of things, back into the cabinetry,” remembers Tommy. This reverse process orientation still informs his business model today. From logistics to shop drawings, the emphasis is on continually reviewing and improving the process. But the primary force behind Tommy’s vision was to start a company that would be culture-driven and based on love and kindness, fairness and honesty, and transparency. The business grew and expanded because Tommy understood how to identify and nurture talent. “Our business attracted the talented artisans—they found us,” Tommy notes. “They were appreciated and admired for their talent.” This attitude fueled the expansion from a 3,000-square-foot facility to one that today boasts 42,000 square feet. The growth was organic and founded on a profound dedication to what Tommy has coined “monumental work.” 34

Rather than referring to the scope of a particular project, “monumental” refers to a standard of quality. “It’s the best you can make it,” Tommy remarks. The benchmark is aspired to rather than enforced; it’s the logical consequence of valuing both the person and the process. It dovetails with a “shoulder-to-shoulder” work ethic that defines the culture at Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild. It stems from the belief that everyone is of equal importance, everyone’s task has equal value, and the collaborative process creates extraordinary results. Exceptional Craftsmanship When admiring the projects that Tommy and his team have completed, one begins to appreciate both the breadth and depth of the creative and engineering prowess he has assembled. A starburst veneer on the doorway to a Naples penthouse was executed for a client who especially admired custom woodworking. The space is intimate, with low ceiling heights, and the client wanted an interior reminiscent of a yacht. The wood used for the doorway is macassar ebony with a hand-

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stitched veneer. The high-polish/high-gloss piece took over 1,000 hours to complete and was hand rubbed, wet sanded and buffed using at least eight different grits of sandpaper. The guild was also the interior contractor for a Port Royale home featured here. The team conceived and executed the cabinetry, windows, floors, ceiling, millwork, custom doors and built-ins. The preference was for a traditional aesthetic, which included dentil and fluted moldings. In an exceptionally appointed home on Jupiter Island, the team masterfully crafted and engineered a set of his and hers closets. The 18thcentury French design is for the lady’s collection, and the more masculine Biedermeier style houses the gentleman’s. The doors of each open with the wave of a hand, and motorized carousels usher garments from nether reaches. Function informed every element of the design, which needed to accommodate a notably majestic wardrobe. The feminine design was executed primarily in cherrywood. All the ormolu was custom-made in-house. An English term used to describe an 18th-century gilding technique, ormolu typically requires applying finely ground, high-carat gold amalgam accents to an object finished in this way—whether furniture or other decorative arts. All the carvings are hand-carved and finished in 24-carat gold leaf. A detail of one of the closet doors reveals the extraordinary inlay work with mother-of-pearl accents. The Biedermeier style was aptly chosen for the masculine counterpart; here, the primary wood types are cherry and white oak burl. As challenging as ormolu, hand-stitched veneers and gilt finishes can be, some of the most demanding projects are modern masterpieces, 36

such as the stunning kitchen in this Naples home. “With modern designs, you are limited in your reveals; everything has to line up perfectly,” Tommy notes. The project also highlights the guild’s talent in working with a plethora of materials and elements. As Tommy points out, “In this project, our engineering team had to be exacting in the integration of metalwork, brass work, the back-lit acrylic panels, sound systems and lighting systems.” Monumental Work Core values are easy to articulate, but much harder to execute. A “shoulder-to-shoulder” work ethic is a defining feature of the culture Tommy has nurtured. Stemming from his belief that every department—from design to installation—fulfills the collaborative goal of monumental work. He also encourages his craftspeople to pursue their own personal creative interests. One of his masters makes beautiful one-of-a-kind memory books. Another salvages scraps of veneer to create beautiful ukuleles. These individual pursuits hone the commitment to quality craftsmanship. “When these artisans apply their talents to personal endeavors out of sheer love and passion for their craft, it translates into monumental quality craftsmanship for the projects we do for others,” Tommy says. Nurturing and “growing” talent is imperative to sustain high standards. “We work collaboratively with the local educational community to encourage and support apprenticeships among local high school students. We have some people who started out while in high school and have been with us for 15 years,” Tommy adds. Homegrown engineers started out as cabinet makers or as framers. “If you haven’t done it from the ground up, you haven’t made the requisite mistakes that inform and improve your craft,” Tommy maintains.

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In addition to working collaboratively within the community, Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild also seeks opportunities to improve the local community at large. A civic leader in the Naples area, Tommy and the Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild have devoted considerable time, resources and stewardship to local organizations and outreach programs. As they embrace the challenges that each project offers, they also do not shy away from assisting those less fortunate. Tommy models himself as a conductor, orchestrating the various talents into a resounding symphony. His sons Ben and Matt have joined the family venture and are trained in manufacturing engineering and business and marketing, respectively. They all dedicate themselves to what Tommy has described as “New World craftsmanship,” Tommy is confident that the vision he founded is not only in good hands, but that the trades and craftsmanship will gain value and admiration. In its unwavering commitment to monumental work, Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild has set a new standard for quality, proving the adage, “Quality is not an act; it’s a habit.” Resources: Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild 1510 Rail Head Boulevard Naples, FL 34110 239.591.3203

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A spectacular collection of fabulous kitchens and baths from our favorite designers

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arely do interior spaces drive the design of the exterior architecture, but in this showstopping kitchen designed by Mick de Giulio, rules and boundaries were rewritten. For their newly built home in the coastal community of Tequesta, FL, the clients were open to a design that was rooted in the theme of transparency.

weight of the cabinet and its contents with no visible means of support,” Mick notes. On the opposite wall, glass and polished stainless steel are employed to similar ends. The earthenware seems to float within the cabinetry. Beneath are mirror-fronted sliding doors that house small appliances, which when opened reveal pull-out stations. Similar attention is paid to lighting features. A sculpted ceiling houses lighting in the recessed perimeter, while translucent Stamen pendants One distinct expression of this focus can be found in the range hood from Niche Modern exude a diaphanous glow. wall, which is cleverly framed by windows that look out onto water views. “We were able to get involved early in the process and work with The theme prevails in the adjacent seating area, which is home to a the client to dictate architecturally where those windows would end stunning glass wine storage unit by Danmark Development. Comfortup, so they were perfectly on axis with the hood,” Mick recalls. “We ably elegant to serve as a breakfast area or to stage elegant dinners, the didn’t want the room to end there because you have such stunning seating area boasts modern surfaces that complement more traditional views; that’s why we designed the composition of the windows to go elements, such as the De Giulio-designed hutch made of ebonized around the hood.” Composed of Brazilian quartzite and finished with walnut and crystal hardware. A dazzling chandelier from Restoration a polished stainless-steel edge, the panels to the left and right of the Hardware crowns the area with a dance of spectral light. hood slide, allowing access to spices and other cooking essentials. The custom De Giulio hood is made of hand-scraped wenge wood, a richly A creative genius, Mick is incredibly humble and soft-spoken. “We hued tropical timber. Appliances housed in the area include an induc- didn’t want to do just a ‘nice’ kitchen,” he says. “The clients were ention stove top from Wolf and a CookTek induction wok. thusiastic to explore these compositions and unique themes that were very successful because of the collaboration between us, the client and Professionally equipped appliances are thoughtfully integrated into the builder.” Mick’s métier is fostering connections and innovation to the design. A Sub-Zero refrigerator, executed as an armoire, and re- achieve extraordinary outcomes. frigerator drawers and freezer are all De Giulio custom-paneled with a high-gloss eucalyptus finish and polished stainless-steel hardware. Resources: Additionally, a De Giulio Collection stainless-steel sink with teak cutting board is in the perimeter area, as well as a Multiere stainless sink Mick de Giulio Design from the Mick De Giulio Collection for Kallista. Both sinks have Kal- Chicago/Luxehome lista faucets in a nickel finish. Lower perimeter cabinetry is SieMatic 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, Suite 121 BeauxArts, a collection designed by Mick and finished in magnolia Chicago, IL 60654 white lacquer with polished stainless-steel hardware accents. Perhaps 312.494.9200 the pièce de résistance of the design—and the ultimate expression of transparency—is the glass-and-stainless corner cabinet. Danmark Development The masterfully designed glass cabinets are exceptionally executed P.O. Box 2003 from both a design and an engineering standpoint. Custom-made in Hobe Sound, FL 33475 the in-house metal shop, the corner cabinet is completely pellucid 56.429.6100 along one wall, and the corner element is mirror-backed to reflect the open spaces. The entire construction literally hovers. “We worked with the builder to create a cantilevered steel base underneath to hold the Photography: CJ Walker Design + Decor

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esponsive design emerges through an exhaustive process of identifying a client’s needs and wishes. Harrison Design, specialists in high-end residential architecture, also understands the value of anticipating the future requirements that a space may serve. Often focused on aesthetics, the qualifier “timeless” can and should be used to describe functional expectations as well. Greg Palmer, principal at Harrison Design, outlines this approach as it applies to a stunning master bath in an Atlanta home.

The kitchen featured here is the proverbial hub of the home. A new construction shingle-style house located on Georgia’s Golden Isles, the family residence is directed outwards onto the natural bounty at its doorstep. The sink wall opens onto river views, and the neutral palette aligns with the chromatic shades of coastal landscapes. Masterfully combining modern elements with reclaimed oak flooring and exposed timbers, the kitchen blends rough-hewn finishes with warm metallic touches. The custom range hood boasts brass accents that are echoed in the pendants crowing the island. A client choice, the counter stools are a diaphanous composition that harmonizes with the whole without adding unnecessary volume. Marble countertops and custom cabinetry from Rosewood Industries are finished in white hues. A concrete tile backsplash adds visual interest and yokes the remaining nickel and stainless components into a cohesive whole. The space remains clutter-free thanks to a pantry located behind the appliance wall, where foodstuffs and ready-to-go small appliances are conveniently housed.

The residence, a new construction, is designed in a style coined “English Country.” Incredibly sumptuous and inviting, the master bath boasts a multitude of state-of-the-art features that are conceived to meet current and future needs. The zero-entry shower is executed with easy access and serviceability in mind. Seamless transitions, a wide turn radius, bench seating, exhaust fans, and a handheld and rain shower ensure that every imaginable function is included. “We designed the master bath with the idea of anticipating future needs,” explains Greg. “All features can be opened and These spaces reveal Harrison Design’s commitment to designs that are cenare always serviceable—but the design does not explicitly reveal this focus tered around the premise that form and function should promote family on an aesthetic level.” and connection—the intersection of heart and home. The clients expressed their wish for a warm, inviting and comfortable space. Highlights include a sculptural tub centerpiece and a vanity explicitly executed to resemble furniture rather than cabinetry. Designed in-house by Karen Ferguson, Harrison’s director of interior design, and built by Block and Chisel, the piece is made with curved-crotch mahogany panels and freestanding legs. Hardware from Samuel Heath complements the exquisite lines and finishes of the vanity impeccably. The space is awash with natural light, with additional accent lighting and drama provided by the stunning chandelier from Dennis & Leen: a regal sanctuary from which to launch and crown the day’s events.

Resources: Harrison Design Gregory Palmer 24 Tenth Street South Naples, FL 34102 239.206.5909 Photographer Master Bath: Gordon Beall Photographer Kitchen: Richard Leo Johnson Design + Decor

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esigning a custom kitchen in a new build is the ultimate blank canvas experience: designer as artist. Guiding clients toward a vocabulary to help define their vision is the work of a listener and interpreter. Andrew Hirsch appreciates all these roles when designing kitchens and baths. Andrew was captivated by the prospect of designing the kitchen for a family with three young children in their 7,500-square-foot dream home in Naples. In his early consults with the client, a clean and white range hood emerged as the focal point for the design. Since the home was a new construction, Andrew worked with architectural plans to delineate spaces and create the overall layout. His prime concern when designing kitchens is to focus on how his clients move through the space. “It’s of paramount importance to limit crossfunctions in the space,” he says. “It’s about balancing the idiosyncrasies of who uses the space—and how.” Andrew took an exhaustive inventory of the clients’ daily needs and functions, and designed spaces accordingly. For example, he positioned a wet bar away from the main hub of the kitchen, yet close enough to refrigeration. Similarly, a small blending and brewing station is located adjacent to the paneled refrigerator. All the appliances are stored and can be used without disrupting other functions in the range area. Andrew was thrilled when the client requested a blue island in the warm, sunny space. Having established a wonderful working relationship with Indiana-based Dutch Made Custom Cabinetry, he had all the cabinets and the center island custom-designed by the firm, which also designed the stunning range hood. A backsplash made of Carrara subway tile covers the entire back wall. Countertops were done Design + Decor

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in Neolith, an incredibly durable material made to withstand the rigors of family life, and finished in arctic white to maintain the clean and modern vibe. Lighting was also an important consideration. “Florida light is so intense,” notes Andrew. “You have laser-blue light in the morning, and incredible pink sunsets at dusk. You have to consider the hue of the light as it moves through the space.” The solution involved using a combination of recessed ceiling lights and strategically placed spots to accent functional areas, along with large pendants that illuminate and serve as jewelry. “Pendants need to be transparent with strong architectural elements,” he explains. The Machinist Glass Cloche Pendant from Restoration Hardware fit the bill perfectly. The geometric lines in the fixtures echo the brass-accented bar stools below; the warm metal finishes are blended with hardware in polished stainless that complements the appliances. Perhaps the most important and endearing force behind Andrew’s designs is his focus on creating memories. “I want to design kitchens because that’s where the greatest memories of my childhood and my life were—in my grandmother’s kitchen. I would watch her cook and dance through the kitchen,” he fondly recounts. Ultimately, it’s not about the newest colors, finishes or appliances: it’s about the dance and the memories. Resources: Andrew Hirsch Kitchen and Bath Designer Coastal Home Design Studio 1673 Pine Ridge Road Naples, FL 34109 239.703.5051 Photography Diana Todorova Photography

Design + Decor

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pen layout kitchens have more to do with embracing a lifestyle than following a design trend. Designing a kitchen is always about function first, but the space’s significance extends far beyond meal prep: after all, gatherings and homecomings, as well as the quotidian, all unfold here. Gil Walsh of Gil Walsh Interiors is keenly attuned to the intricacies of creating an environment that evokes her client’s unique style but is coupled with comfort.

space. White Carrara marble is used for flooring and shower walls and as a thick-edged top to the vanity. “The thick marble-edge detail on the vanity leads you into a transitional feel,” Gil explains. “A little Hollywood glam was added with a very simple transitional chandelier that has crystal drops echoed in the sconces above the vanity, coupled with a Regency-style mirror. It’s all a nod to the Hollywood Regency design and aesthetic.” Polished nickel finishes and architectural hardware complete the aesthetic.

The owners of a completely renovated 3,300-square-foot condominium enjoy cooking and entertaining family and friends. The couple’s wish list for their kitchen included a breakfast area, wine storage and a decidedly unfussy aesthetic. Gil accomplished these goals by focusing on simple surfaces and custom millwork to create a casual and transitional aesthetic.

The seemingly simple choices that create these spaces are what clients appreciate about Gil’s designs. “Our signature casual transitional with a nod to traditional is what our clients want,” she adds. Stylistic labels aside, environments that exude warmth, comfort and timeless elegance are the hallmark of Gil Walsh Interiors.

The kitchen was spatially modified to create a larger and more open space. The island, a new addition, now serves as the breakfast area. Granite countertops in a slate hue with minimal veining are paired with custom cabinets painted white, blending with the millwork and shelving in the adjacent living area. A sea glass-hued backsplash offers colorful accents and echoes the water views, while architectural door pulls and other hardware add modern touches. The ceiling is executed in cypress wood and the flooring is engineered wood, natural finishes that lend warmth and vibrancy to the space.


Many people come to coastal communities to soak up the light and sun of warmer climates. The clients for whom Gil designed this stunning master bathroom are residents of Toronto who explicitly wanted a light-filled space. The footprint is generously sized to allow easy access. When entering this sanctuary, one is greeted by a sculptural bathtub and the splendor of the outdoors, visible through the trio of large windows that surround the

Gil Walsh Interiors Gil Walsh 5505 S. Dixie Highway West Palm Beach, FL 33405 561.932.0631 P.O. Box 9000 Edgartown, MA 02539 508.627.600 Photography Sargent Photography Design + Decor

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A commitment to materials is also evident in the team’s design of a master bath in a Ralph Choeff-designed home in Miami Beach, where the boundaries between interior and exterior are practically erased. Charlotte chose flooring that extends from the interior onto the balcony, changing only to an anti-slip texture. The sliding doors are fully retractable so the balcony becomes an integrated part of the bathroom footprint. All-natural materials of stone, wood and glass create an earthy calm. The floating tub and double vanity from Mia Cucina add graphic and bold contours, and the large mirror reflects the sunlight and water views. A woven wooden There is nothing superfluous in the design of this beautiful Miami Beach bench made from solid canaletta walnut by Porada adds a textural and penthouse. “We treated this space as if it were a yacht interior,” says Char- sculptural finish. lotte. Initially, a rather long and disconnected corridor led to a kitchen that felt small and disconnected from the rest of the apartment. Char- Charlotte’s designs conjure up majestic tapestries in which the meticulous lotte’s approach involved redesigning the space and extending the finishes interplay of material, color and line converge to create a masterpiece. The on the kitchen cabinetry into the corridor, which created a natural flow and design ethos at Dunagan Diverio can be summed up by the following: “We transition. “The wood of the cabinet wall wraps around into the corridor pride ourselves on creating timeless, elegant and sophisticated interiors to integrate this volume as if it had always been there,” she explains. “The that feel welcoming—spaces that are usable and approachable, and feel kitchen no longer reads like an afterthought.” comfortable and never intimidating.” lean lines and sophisticated finishes are hallmarks of most high-end kitchens today. Contrary to popular belief, countertops are not a repository for small appliances hawking their talents to blend, brew and brown. Kitchens with a large footprint can offer innumerable storage solutions to keep the clutter well hidden, but those in apartments often present an exceptional challenge. Charlotte Dunagan of Dunagan Diverio Design Group understands that understated elegance requires discipline.

The appliance wall houses refrigeration and the entrance to a butler’s kitchen. Here, one can slip away to a fully functioning space, where all the small appliances that typically occupy precious counter space are stored and ready for use. Finished in a wood laminate with a heavy durable texture, the cabinets are from German manufacturer Leicht and were procured at Hausscape. The remaining cabinets are finished in a white matte lacquer with anti-fingerprint technology. Statuario marble is used on the cooking island and repeated on the ledge adjacent to the seating area.

Resources Dunagan Diverio Design Group Charlotte Dunagan 2100 Ponce de Leon Boulevard, #920 Coral Gables, FL 33134 305.438.0130

The whole creates a timeless, elegant and welcoming atmosphere. The Photography abundance of natural materials—such as the oak flooring, which prevails Paul Stoppi throughout the apartment—makes the space approachable and comfortable. Design + Decor

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f the kitchen is the main gathering point, why not make it welcoming? This line of thought informed the design for Jaime Blomquist’s two kitchens, featured here. Both clients came to Jaime with a wish to update interiors and create a timeless and classical look. Jaime’s expertise as a designer stems from her uncanny talent at understanding and executing a client’s vision.

In this 6,000-square-foot coastal residence, Jaime modified the existing kitchen footprint by expanding the boundaries of an existing open layout. The island, a focal point in the new design, was spatially modified to allow access from all sides. Custom-made and finished in a rich walnut, it is crowned by a Calacatta gold countertop. All the cabinetry was also custom-designed and painted in white and light gray. “The gray color frames the stove area, thus creating a center point with the island and the back wall,” says Jaime. Changing colors, materials or design elements to create the symmetry and allow the eye to glide through a space is a hallmark of Jaime’s designs. The range hood, also customized to match the cabinetry, crowns a beautiful Waterjet mosaic backsplash. The panel-ready fridge allows details like brushed nickel hardware and the polished nickel sconces to take center stage and contribute to the clean and elegant aesthetic. The second kitchen, located in a coastal ranch estate, was also a complete renovation. The original had two islands, which were reworked to create a welcoming seating area. Again, the prevailing features anchoring the design are

the custom cabinetry, here with inset doors, and a custom range hood. This kitchen has a more intimate feel, due in part to a lower ceiling height. Jaime explicitly rejected pendant lighting in the first design, but embraced it here, where it echoes the horizontal linearity of the island and the range hood. It was faux-finished to match the pendant in the breakfast area. Cambria Quartz countertops, which extend vertically and frame the hood, allow the floating shelves to become the focal point. A Waterjet stone-andglass backsplash adds visual interest and dynamism. Here, the client preferred a panel-ready fridge to minimize visible stainless. Pulls and faucet hardware are done in an oil-rubbed bronze, creating a noir finish: a decidedly timeless chromatic scheme. Resources: Jaime Blomquist Interiors Jaime Blomquist 1780 NE 7th Street Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304 954.999.5601 Photography: Brantley Photography Design + Decor

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ust shy of 5,000 square feet, this coastal family residence built in Naples, FL, was a design collaboration between Real Wood Floors and Design West. Livability was the driving force behind the design. The clients stressed the importance of accommodating a multitude of guests, with fabrics and finishes withstanding daily use and the rigors of poolside afternoons and coastal living. The family’s second home, the house needed a spatial layout to comfortably accommodate a large number of house guests and visiting family.

A particularly harmonious collaboration between the client, builder and designer achieved a home that celebrates the relaxed vibe and beach lifestyle the clients always dreamed of.

Neutral warm backgrounds and custom Wood-Mode cabinetry are coupled with wide-plank white European oak wood floors, with extra-long boards sourced from Real Wood Floors. In addition to serving as flooring, the boards were also applied to ceiling details. The finishes resist water, wine and coffee spills without spotting or staining, and are almost maintenance-free, as they do not need to be re-oiled. Counter spaces are executed in a combination of granite and quartz. There is also a pizza oven in the outdoor kitchen area—the perfect culinary complement to a day at the beach.

Flooring Real Wood Floors 2013 Trade Center Way Naples, FL 34109 239.470.5827


Interior Design Design West 9118 Strada Place, Mercato 8130 The kitchen is a true workhorse. The client enjoys cooking and satisfying Naples, FL 34108 her hungry guests in an inviting and open space. A large island is a favorite 239.514.1234 gathering place for conversation or enjoying a relaxed meal. The lines were kept modern and sleek, enhancing both function and aesthetics. Focal points include a 120-inch fireplace and an outdoor blue-tiled spa area, all serving Builder to imbue the space with a modern beach ambience. Conceived as an open Naples Luxury Builders layout from the start, the home and the kitchen in particular have developed 5455 Tamarind Ridge Drive the distinct patina and warmth of a well-loved space. A nautical color palette Naples, FL 34119 of coastal blues with soft neutral sand tones is accented by pops of color in 239.961.5570 decorative accessories.

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ana Knapp, senior designer at Collins & DuPont Design Group, was charged with completely remodeling a somewhat dated and heavy Tuscan home. Containing the requisite precast Corinthian columns and a stained-glass window focal point, the master bath was especially dark and heavy. Additionally, the space was neither practical nor functional, since bathtub and shower areas were accessible only via steps either ascending or descending what were often wet and slippery surfaces. Lana was eager to start from scratch and create an interior that was more attuned to both the aesthetic and spatial requirements of her clients. The focal point for her design was the sculptural bathtub, and the design paradigm driving her vision was “let the light in.” A harmonious relationship with the builder enabled Lana to strip the entirety of the pastiche and dark surfaces of the original footprint. Since ceiling heights were rather high at 17 feet, she chose to lower the height to 13 feet. “When the walls and columns were removed, the volume of the space was very large,” Lana recalls. She chose to separate bath and shower areas with a curved wall to create a sense of movement in the space. “I wanted to curve and shorten this dividing wall to emphasize the depth of the room and let the natural light penetrate through the entire space,” she explains. The rounded windows that hover in the upper reaches of the room were part of the original design, but the entirety was blocked by walls. Shutters on lower-level windows often remain open since the lot offers ample privacy. The curvature of the wall also gives the bathtub area a decidedly intimate feel. Niches pierce the surface of the wall and are finished with a 12- by 12-inch sheet of polished mini-brick mother-ofpearl. The surface shimmers and glimmers, whether illuminated by the abundance of natural light or by the dropped painted wooden beams that glow in the vanity area. Lana explicitly delineated spaces by incorporating mosaic tile details in the shower area, underneath the bathtub and in the vanity flooring. The ceiling detail’s radius echoes the tile in the floor beneath it. Polished Asian Statuary “Thassos” was chosen to ensure that a clean and bright surface maintained warmth and did not cross over into an aesthetic that registers as sterile. His and hers vanities are painted a pale gray tone to maintain a subdued feel. Sconces from Hudson Valley are embedded in the overhead mirrors to ensure sufficient light for true colors and details. The rounded lines are echoed in the sconces from Hubbardton Forge that flank the bathtub. The overall composition reads more modern than the remainder of the home, which Lana describes as predominantly transitional with modern nods. Little if anything remains of the dark, heavy and overdone aesthetic that prevailed before Lana’s design pierced through the shadows to capture and harness the light. Resources: Interior Design Collins & DuPont Design Group Lana Knapp 8911 Brighton Lane Bonita Springs, FL 34134 239.948.2400 Builder BCB Homes 3696 Enterprise Ave #100 Naples, FL 34104 239.643.1004

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e Corbusier, a pioneer of modern architecture, once mused that “the home should be the treasure chest of living.” Designers are tasked with creating inviting spaces that engender warmth and comfort, but by what means? An overused verb, “curate,” does not do justice to the process behind the designs created by Alene Workman Interior Design. Rather than select, organize and present, Alene appoints, marshals and accords the requisite materials, finishes and spatial modifications to achieve stunning interiors. This project was an encore performance. Having designed both winter and summer residences for the clients, Alene’s team members were well-versed in the homeowners’ preferences and requirements. “Function and practicality were of upmost importance, along with a beautiful, clean and modern setting that is embraced and reflected throughout the entire


home,” notes Alene. An avid chef and hostess, the client requested a kitchen with a neat and uncluttered interior where she could comfortably entertain her extended family. Actively engaged in the process, she and Alene selected hardware, mainly from Dornbracht, and kitchen appliances that included Wolf, Sub-Zero and Miele. One standout request was for an indoor barbecue station, which the team sourced from BlueStar. The cabinetry in the kitchen was custom designed to ensure fingerprint-free and warm finishes. A combination of backpainted, low-iron, frosted-glass sleek surfaces, which prevail in the appliance and range hood wall, were coupled with a textural Italian engineered wood finish for storage cabinetry in the adjoining seating area. In addition to the main kitchen area, Alene also designed an adjacent storage area and pan-

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try behind the kitchen. Here, one finds hidden access storage or “garages” for small appliances that go deep behind the kitchen’s lower cabinets. The area is also home to the indoor barbecue station and storage for entertaining supplies. Alene chose quartzite countertops that can withstand rigorous use and resist stains and scratches. Incorporated from the exterior, natural stone accents are visible throughout the home and strategically employed in the kitchen as well. The explicit effort to extend and blur interior and exterior boundaries is also evident in the interior color palette composed of textiles in warm amber and beige tones coupled with teak-stained wood accents. “We also explored the use of special marbles, some with flamed rough surfaces combined with sleek polished surfaces, as in the powder room,” says Alene. “I love the sleek materials on the countertop with wallpapered copper on the adjacent walls that create a smooth, sensual dynamic set against the textured side wall and floor border marble.” Both a dramatic entry and ode to the Vitruvian Man, the master bath features stunning symmetry and linear rigor offset by the soft contours of the sculptural tub and the teak-framed doors. The entirety of the composition is crowned by an il-

luminated overhead grid. Alene Workman Interior Design braves the responsibility for what it coins “defining luxury.” Expanding on the meaning behind this tagline, Alene notes, “Luxury is having space. It’s not size that defines a standard—bigger does not translate as better. A large environment can register as intimate, and a small space can read as expansive.” Indeed, it does not seem reductive to view Alene’s process and design philosophy through this prism. She begins by honoring the void and using it as the impetus that informs all her choices—creating that treasure chest of living. Resources: Alene Workman Interior Design Alene Workman 805 East Broward Boulevard Suite 302 Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301 954.989.0898 Photography: Karen Melvin

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ne of nature’s most enduring and beautiful materials takes center stage in this 4,800-square-foot Naples home. Built by BBA Development and designed by Jeffrey Fischer, the interiors pay homage to the beauty, warmth and versatility of wood.

A built-in entertainment wall in the living area vis-à-vis the kitchen has a walnut finish to echo the kitchen cabinetry.

The inspiration behind the design was Jeffrey’s vision of how an architect would create his or her own private residence. The range and mix of materials were hallmarks of the design. “I’m a big believer in mixing—mixing metals, mixing woods—because I feel the moment an approach to a design is reduced to the dogma of one finish or color, that’s when the house will date itself quickly,” notes Jeffrey.

The island is a duality of heavy lacquered wood, which meets exactly flush with the marble, achieving both a harmony of material and a triumph of engineering. Contours and edges were also explicitly mixed to create balance and visual interest. The edges on the backsplash tiles have irregular lines. The grid-like linearity and symmetry of the cabinetry and center island are offset by the softer contours of the Arteriors pendant lamps and the curvature of the counter stools. In keeping with the uncluttered rigor that open layout kitchens demand, Jeffrey designed a butler’s pantry in an adjoining area, which houses all the small appliances and additional storage.

At the time of this kitchen design, white was the predominant theme and color in these spaces. Jeffrey explicitly chose to move away from this aesthetic. The cabinetry is walnut with a matte black glass finish so that it remains free of fingerprints. Additionally, Jeffrey chose a magnificent dining room table in a Brazilian hardwood from Roberta Schilling in Miami.

Wood flooring was used in every area of the home, including the master bathroom. Jeffrey worked closely with Naples Flooring to achieve a stunning medley of custom patterns and finishes. A mix of chevron and herringbone details, stained in darker shades, complement the predominantly wide-plank wood flooring from Naples Flooring’s European Elegance Col-


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lection, with a width of 8.66 inches and a plank thickness of .75 inch. It is Jeffrey Fisher Home finished in “Lancaster,” one of the most popular stains. (All the collections Marcus Jelly are made to be as durable as they are beautiful.) 852 First Ave South, Unit A Naples, FL 34102 Grown, engineered and finished in Europe, all the products from Naples 239.234.5564 Flooring are designed to withstand heavy traffic, wear and even high moisture. Spillage in kitchens is no problem, thanks to an all-natural UV-cured 183 Wellington Street West hard wax and oil finish. Walnut and ash are offered, but clients overwhelm- Suite 2606 ingly gravitate toward the white oak species, which was used here. The com- Toronto, ON M5V 0A1 pany is also committed to an environmentally friendly manufacturing and 416.910.1142 finishing process. “Our wood is sourced from sustainably managed forests, and we do not use formaldehyde or any other chemicals in our flooring,” notes Naples floor specialist Maciej Dogiel. “We make our own glue and Developer offer both a natural install and natural maintenance.” Installation is overseen Salem Homes in-house by trained professionals and not subcontracted. 1395 3rd Street South Naples, FL 34102 In sum, Naples Flooring does not just pay lip service to the tagline “Satis- 239.571.3619 faction Guaranteed”— it delivers it. Indeed, this project demonstrates that successful collaborations lead to amazing results. Builder Resources: BBA Development 5881 Shirley Street Naples Flooring Naples, FL 34109 900 Fifth Avenue South #102 239.260.5396 Naples, FL 34102 239.262.6561 Photo Credits: Venjhamin Reyes Design + Decor

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lorida Designer Cabinetry is a full-service, high-end remodeling company that served as general contractor for this stunning Naples beach condo. Just over 3,000 square feet, the residence is used as a vacation home for a young family. The unifying theme is a relaxed Shaker beach vibe featuring shiplap and a medley of rough-hewn touches mixed with clean lines.

which provides a contrast to the smoother surfaces throughout the kitchen. This finish was used to cover a Liebherr refrigerator, for open shelving adjacent to the range and for the microwave built-in cabinet.

The center island houses drawers that store pots and pans. Topped with a Pompeii Quartz countertop, the area provides generous seating in the hub of the home. The range and range hood are from The kitchen, designed when Back to the Future was a blockbuster Bertazzoni with an induction stove top. Florida Designer Cabineat the cinema, was completely gutted. Walls were torn down to cre- try is an authorized dealer and distributor for all the appliances ate an open layout, which not only provided for an airier space, but featured here. also maximized the extraordinary water views. “The transformation was wonderful—from the 1980s to an open and clean beach look,” The team solved a number of structural challenges in the design notes Patricia Mammoliti, designer at Florida Designer Cabinetry. as well. A large support column was incorporated in the area that houses the microwave built-in. “The adjacent tall pantries were Cabinetry was chosen from Miralis, known for its exceptional conceived to function both aesthetically and functionally,” explains construction and variety of finishes. Matte white lacquer Shak- Patricia. “The one closest to the range is only five inches deep er cabinetry is paired with the manufacturer’s “Rough Chic,” a because we had to incorporate the structural column throughout knotted pine with a hand-wiped finish lending a rough texture, the whole building, which we chose to enclose and make into a us-


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able place to store spices. Adjacent to this is a full pantry with interior roll-out shelves.� An existing ceiling soffit over the island was expanded as well. Initially housing the air-conditioning and sprinkler system, the extension was built to create visual symmetry with the island below and to house the pendant lighting. The transparent globes, Edison bulbs and metal finishes harmonize with the remaining decorative elements, which were thoughtfully chosen. An antique mirror tile in the wine refrigerator reflects natural light and nearby metallic touches. Coherent designs require a mindful approach. Offering a variety of manufacturers, Florida Designer Cabinetry can meet almost any aesthetic preference—but its true strength lies in its ability to deliver customized solutions that are as functional as they are beautiful. Resources: Florida Designer Cabinetry Patricia Mammoliti 10800 Corkscrew Road, Suite 105 Estero, FL 33928 238.948.9005 Photography: Rebecca Myers Design + Decor

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SKY-HIGH MIAMI Denise Davies of D2 Interieurs has elevated her designs to soaring heights in this stunning Miami penthouse. Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Denise Davies

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The owners are sophisticated art collectors and budding musicians, and their passions are evident here.

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A focal point that melts into the surroundings— the most inconspicuous piano ever.

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The seating area in the living room invites long, languid afternoons among chartreuse, pine and azure.


ith its distinctive color palette, textured touches and vibrant finishes, this D2 Interieurs open-concept penthouse represents a modern homage to Miami. “I grew up in Miami Beach,” Denise says, “and I wanted to create a design that captures its essence by combining its history with how the area has evolved over the years.” The complete gut renovation of this 4,200-square-foot penthouse apartment is the expression of Denise’s distinct approach. Shying away from stylistic pigeonholes and labels, Denise carefully intuits her clients’ wishes and needs, and creates a personalized style rich in nuance and detail. One of the primary goals of this project was to fully exploit the breathtaking water views. Exceptionally positioned, the penthouse boasts views of the ocean, the Intracoastal Waterway and the night lights of Miami Beach. The views do not fade into darkness when dusk falls, but rather offer a dazzling display that Denise has skillfully captured and reflected on interior surfaces.

Bright Lights, Magic City The clients requested a modern, open layout where they could entertain. Sophisticated art collectors and well versed in their stylistic choices, they wanted a design that reflected their lifestyle. “I focused on a restrained design to make it all about the view and their vision of how they want to live,” Denise says. Subtle architectural details and strategic use of color combine to transform the space into a serene oasis with dazzling sparks and glamorous winks. The main living room is a stunning backdrop from which to enjoy the views or entertain guests. The ethereal aura of the space is achieved by combining light and color. The stepped cove ceiling has a metallic painted inlay, enabling the reflection of both the water and sky to “float” in the space. An abstract painting by artist Jim Bobick seems to have been inspired by the magnificent water views: His horizontal layers uncannily capture the hues and help create the atmosphere of calm that permeates the space. Incorporating a piano into a design often presents a challenge or, in Design + Decor

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High-voltage entertaining in a Miami penthouse living room bar, designed by D2 Interieurs.The bar chairs are vintage with original fabric; exceptional design never expires.

this case, an opportunity. Typically large, cumbersome and often in contrast with its surroundings, a piano naturally draws focus. The full-sized grand here was treated to a custom lacquer finish, reflecting the natural light and lending a luminous glow throughout. Its rounded body echoes the waves, and its legs align symmetrically with the window panes. In Denise’s design, the piano almost disappears into the limestone flooring, disguising its mass; it almost seems to hover.

Casale Marble. The blush-gray veining echoes the upholstery of the vintage bar chairs and harmonizes with the prevailing coastal color scheme. Mindful that the space is not always staged for cocktail hour, Denise designed the bar area so that bottles and barware are hidden from view.

Art Deco Delight An ode to Miami’s rich Art Deco heritage, the furniture in this room is a mix of custom and vintage pieces so characteristic of Denise’s aesthetic. The custom sofa is from Le Jeune Upholstery. The glass-andlacquer-based coffee table from Decades is a vintage piece, as are the Art Deco bar chairs from Deco Dreams. To complement the seating area, Denise chose pops of chartreuse and yellow—colors that echo those in Marcia Ramos Perello’s lyrical abstraction, which graces the area above the couch. Recessed vintage wall lighting offers straightedged angularity in contrast to the anthropomorphic sculptures from the clients’ collection. The entire arrangement is a medley of formal lines, colors and textures that expand rather than compete with the wondrous views.

Alloyed Allure The dining area is positioned to take in the sensational views. A custom-designed table built by craftsmen on-site features a crackled glass tabletop resting on a chrome-polished base. Natural light ricochets and penetrates the surface, creating an extraordinary prism of color. The chairs framing the ensemble are vintage, sourced from Palm Beach Antiques & Design Center. Crystals from a contemporary stardust chandelier reflect and refract natural light even without illumination. Unapologetically glamorous, it offers a dynamic counterpoint to the structured geometry of the seating area. Typically, Denise employs her custom-designed rugs to delineate spaces in her open-layout creations; in this space, however, she seized the opportunity to frame the ensemble with an inlay of reflective metallic tiles. Artful nods to the quintessential glitz and bling of the Magic City are a subtle constant throughout the design.

Entertaining and accommodating guests in this space is a breeze, thanks to the spectacular bar area that Denise custom designed. The built-in cabinetry is made of white oak in a high-gloss lacquer finish, with shagreen inlaid doors. The bar top is executed beautifully by

A powder room turned jewel box practically bursts with spectral light. The metallic tile is employed on the ceiling, floor and back wall. A wave pattern on the floor adds a dynamic curve to the linearity of the tile squares. (The master bath has similar tile work on the flooring.)


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Crystal jewels mesmerize and illuminate the dining area.

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A jewel-box powder room.

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Layers of lighting, high-gloss finishes and metallic-tile touches command attention in the master bath.

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Adorning an adjacent wall is a wallcovering made of a handcrafted veneer of layered capiz shells, from Maya Romanoff in Mother of Pearl Aphrodite. The sleek and clean lines of the vanity anchor and soothe the senses. Denise always layers lighting in her projects. “When I do a lighting plan, I have at least three sources of lighting,” she explains. “At different times of the day you get different lighting, which you need to consider when choosing light sources and overall illumination.” The tulip-shaped vintage wall sconces, purchased at auction, are embedded in the mirror. A chandelier in the master bedroom was also part of the set. Detailed Dedication Layers of lilac and hyacinth evoke a serene and contemplative mood in the master bedroom. Denise’s attention to tactile touches abounds in this space. The custom velvet headboard adds warmth and softly reflects the bounty of natural light. Metallic touches are strategically dosed to balance and cool. The nightstands are D2 custom designs. A Milo Baughman vintage tête-à-tête loveseat, with its organic lines and plush surfaces, complements the relaxed and breezy aesthetic. Whisper-soft and light, a silk throw lends a gossamer sateen finish to the robust contours of the custom-designed D2 bed. Subtlety and nuance define the design of this penthouse. Using bold details and powerful sleights of hand, Denise has captured the essence of a city that is grounded in the present but pays homage to the past. While accommodating her clients’ tastes, she imbues her designs with playful sophistication, striking details and pops of color that are always carefully dosed. Statement lighting and metallic finishes add glamour, tropical touches and textural finishes promise warmth, furniture and art engage in an ongoing conversation—and all come together to provide a spectacular view of the Magic City. Resources:

The master bedroom, perfectly hued and texturally imbued for dreamy nights.

D2 Interieurs Denise Davies 17 Lords Highway Weston, CT 06883 Design + Decor

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Matthew Kragh of MHK Architecture & Planning designs a masterful residence redefining the boundaries of outdoor living Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Kenny Siebenhar

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Elegant symmetry coupled with native grasses and shell- stone mulch prevail in the front of the home.

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Elegant lines and architectural elements form a grand entryway.

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atthew Kragh realized his own paradise when he designed his private residence in Royal Harbor on Naples Bay, FL. Just shy of 6,000 square feet, the home was designed on a double-wide lot to capture the extraordinary views of Naples Bay. An incredible outdoor living area was created along the entire backside of the home. Boasting a rich mix of materials, stunning landscaping and features that spark all the senses, the outcome is a residential spa that offers exceptional views and literally blurs the boundaries between indoors and out. Low on Ego Matthew considers himself somewhat of an anomaly in the design world. While architects are often thought of as notoriously ego-driven—consider Howard Roark in Ayn Rand’s novel The Fountainhead, and Parker Posey ’s character in the movie The Architect—Matthew is unapologetically detached from such stereotypes. “We strive to paint our client’s vision, not ours,” he promises. Founded 10 years ago, his firm, MHK Architecture & Planning, today serves clients across the Southeast and in Aspen, Colorado, and the Bahamas. His portfolio includes not only high-end residential projects, but master-planned

communities, resort hotels and restaurants as well. However, he is especially proud of the creation of the “New” Olde Naples through his firm’s work with single-family residential design. “You can now literally see one or two MHK houses on every block in Olde Naples,” notes Matthew. “They are all distinctively unique, too, which is amazing.” Matthew has labeled himself “The Florida Architect.” When asked to expand on the philosophy behind this tagline, he explains, “The architect that specializes in the Florida/Caribbean lifestyle, where the interior and exterior of the house are merged into a seamless cinematic experience of casual coastal living, and where structures reflect the historic nature of the Florida lifestyle.” This viewpoint reflects not only a commitment to a modern coastal aesthetic, but places the style along a continuum with a rich architectural heritage that honors local vernacular. Matthew’s trajectory as a prominent architect had humble and very earnest beginnings. Supported by a great-grandmother, he was a draftsman and builder at a very early age, and pursued an architecture degree to fulfill his creative energies. Today, he appreciates the transformative power of architecture: the Design + Decor

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A postcard-perfect view from the great room: coastal living at its finest.

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A reef-like pendant hovers over the dining area, which mixes metallic with natural materials.

ability and responsibility to shape a community. “I have so much fun driving around town with my kids and literally pointing to a new project on every block where we have been changing the face of Naples,” he says. “It has been such an honor to serve our community through our designs. Olde Naples has transformed into such a gem with nods to its historic past, while embracing our desires to live coastal contemporary lifestyles. It was my ultimate goal to create this vision for our personal home as well.” Outward Orientation Matthew’s vision centered around orienting the house outwards. The entire back wall of the home opens onto an outdoor living area, which can be converted into air-conditioned space by lowering vinyl walls. The outdoor living areas elegantly engage with the interior rooms. Glass walls can pocket into adjacent spaces, allowing the entire structure to open to the exterior. The pool is the focal point here, and was planned and installed by Custom Pools of Naples. “The water’s edge comes right up to the structural columns, making the pool an integral part of the floor plan,” he explains. “The vanishing edge of

the pool and its close integration to the dwelling’s structure give the allusion that the house is literally floating in Naples Bay.” The area is not only a beloved gathering place for the whole family, but the unique concave seawall also attracts dolphins who come to feed here. Waterside Builders was the team he chose to execute the incredibly elaborate design. The firm is known for being experts in high-end coastal homes, and its owner, Mike Assaad, fondly recounts his involvement with the project. “It’s by and large one of the most stunning outdoor landscapes we’ve done,” he says. “We’re exceptionally proud of what we have achieved. The pool and lower deck that hangs over the seawall is my favorite feature.” Brad Harbin, project manager at Waterside, remarked on the sophisticated support system that was conceived to create the main deck area. “We used precast concrete post bases and buried those to accept the framework to fasten the ipe decking material,” he explains. Since finishing the project, the firm has noticed a bump in requests for similar decks in other residential projects. Design + Decor

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Great and white hues predominate, creating clean lines that allow finishes and hardware to take center stage.

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Matt wanted to make sure the house offered ample play space for the kids. Here, a playroom with built-in cottage.

Christian Andrea of Architectural Land Design was yet another expert who helped create the outdoor living area. He commented on Matthew’s flexibility and risk-taking, which informed the landscape design. “Matthew always has a way of inspiring us to think out of the box and create neat spaces,” he says. “He loves to be surprised with new ideas that ultimately evolve into becoming design elements.” Retaining walls were incorporated to ensure that the outdoor spaces could be more closely situated to the home. The design was essentially a blend of the wishes of Matthew’s wife, Trista Sue, for a tropical and colorful feel, which prevails in the back area, and Matthew’s preference for a natural beach dune palette in the front yard. “We incorporated native grasses and shell-stone mulch and organically shaped landscape beds,” notes Christian. Rather than explicitly highlighting architectural features of the house, the landscape was based on a natural organic design that allows the building to transition seam88

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lessly into the natural environment. Strategic use of plantings and fauna also provided the necessary scale to the building. Christian notes how he achieved this end: “The large-canopy trees help to provide much-needed foliage in the sky, to help provide scale to the building.” Collaboration and Technical Exploration The home’s interior can be described as transitional. While certainly exuding a relaxed “barefoot” vibe, the lines, material choices and decorative touches are also decidedly sophisticated and elegant. Broad Avenue Studios worked closely with Trista Sue to create the stunning spaces that flow, embrace and reflect the contemporary coastal aesthetic that is Matthew’s trademark. An elaborate lighting system was installed by Wayne Kahn of Wilson Lighting for both interior and exterior spaces. Clearly committed to fine details of craftsmanship and quality, Matthew worked closely with local builders, suppliers and ven-

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dors. Steve Ruffino of Ruffino Cabinetry, for example, was responsible for designing, manufacturing and installing built-ins and cabinetry in the master bath and laundry/mudroom areas. In its 36th year of operation in the Naples area, the firm is an expert in customized solutions, offering services from design to installation. An array of finishes and walnut interiors were used in Matthew’s home. The house is also exceptionally advanced on a technical level. It is powered by a Tesla solar system, which includes a 21-panel solar array, an FPL net meter and two Tesla wall pack batteries. The system dropped its energy costs from approximately $14 a day to 30 cents a day. “I am now addicted to watching the power distribution on my phone,” notes Matthew. “I think this will ultimately change the way we design our houses in the future.” A Family Affair Design + Decor

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The house, however, is first and foremost a family home. Matthew was especially attuned to providing ample opportunities for his two children to explore and play. Having had the privilege of sprawling spaces while growing up in his Indiana home, Matthew wanted the same for his children. A separate, huge indoor playroom with a builtin cottage, a putting green on the front lawn, sand boxes and a boardwalk along the back of house— which has already proven itself as an attractive fishing spot for the budding fishermen—all ensure that the kids are actively engaged with the home. “Matthew actually incorporated a retaining wall in the front yard to create a flat yard so he and his kids could play,” says landscape designer Christian. “I think it’s neat that we can plan spaces for children to play and enjoy. It’s not often that we play a role in creating childhood memories.” A personal residence that serves as a paradigm for a firm’s architectural vision—coastal contemporary with nods to historic Olde Naples—is what Matthew Kragh has achieved. Living in such a masterpiece has its rewards, as Matthew acknowledges. “Even walking to the refrigerator in the middle of the night is breathtaking, where it seems that Naples Bay is literally upon our doorsteps” he says. “The zero-edge pool that comes right up Design + Decor

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Stunning water views and tropical lush predominate in the rear of the home

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to the back of the house really feels like the bay coming to our door. Somehow we nailed that concept better than any other aspect of the house.� Ultimately, the greatest reward in achieving such a harmonious and functional design is to have such incredibly happy clients—in this case, the smiling faces of your own family members.

Resources: MHK Architecture & Planning Matthew Kragh, AIA 975 6th Avenue South Suite 200 Naples, FL 34102 239.919.0786 Waterside Builders Mike Assaad 1400 Gulfshore Boulevard North Suite 106 Naples, FL 34102 239.430.3883 Architectural Land Design Christian Andrea 2780 South Horseshoe Drive Suite 5 Naples, FL 34104 239.430.1661 Broad Avenue Studios Karen Larson 207 Broad Avenue South Naples, FL 34102 630.817.0029 Ruffino Cabinetry Stephen Ruffino 291 Broad Avenue South Naples, FL 34102 239.529.6240 Stonework Coastal Stone Jon Luther 371 Commercial Boulevard Naples, FL 34104 239.596.7700

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AN AMERICAN MODERNIST MASTERPIECE Michael Wolk transforms Mediterranean pastiche into a paradigm of purity and style in this Boca Raton home. Story by Anna von Stelzer-Wirth Photography by Dan Forer

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An uninterrupted flow and view of the main living area was an engineering and design challenge meticulously executed by Michael and his team.


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The living room showcases mid-century modern icons partnered with Michael Wolk custom-designed pieces.


he masterful symmetry and sophistication that greet the eye in this elegant coastal home seem almost inconceivable when one considers the eclectic mix of styles that dominated the original 4,000-square-foot space. Michael Wolk of Michael Wolk Designs, in conjunction with Brenner Architecture Group, was tasked with transforming the original Mediterranean/Spanish Colonial Revival-style home into a clean and open 12,000-square-foot masterpiece. Besides completely renovating the existing structure, the architects designed a second-story addition, providing Michael with ample opportunity to realize the clients’ vision. The clients liked the water vistas the original space offered, but the existing layout of the home partially obstructed the view. To open the space, Michael removed the pastiche of nonsupporting columns and archways and installed a wall of glass supported by steel in the back of the house, revealing the spectacular panorama. He refers to this structural and architectural stage of his design process as “setting the bones.” As he explains, “Coherence is created by moving walls around within the parameters of the construction, and creating pas-

sageways, closets, doors and windows. This stage is really about responding and creating.” In addition to showcasing the views, Michael was intent on opening up the house to improve the flow of spaces. At the entry of the original house, he notes, “a heavy wooden staircase completely blocked the view to the water.” He replaced the staircase with an almost diaphanous, single-spine stairway of stainless-steel posts supporting wood risers, creating an exceptionally light and dynamic ascent. The curved architecture echoes the fluidity of the contemporary sculpture gracing the entryway, just one of many pieces in the clients’ exceptional art collection. A stunning chandelier by German designer Ingo Maurer provides an illuminating crown to the entire living area. Unfettered Elegance The living room is situated to take full advantage of the home’s stunning water views. Its double-height ceiling also demanded a showstopping display of mid-century furnishings alongside Michael’s custom-designed pieces. “I was greatly influenced and inspired by mid-century designers when I was in design school,” Michael notes. The clients were drawn to Michael’s aesthetic, which he has coined “American ModernDesign + Decor

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Suspended belief: A fireplace hovers magically in the living room.

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Dining room featuring Michael Wolk-designed table and a glass-and-steel wine rack.

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ism.” He describes this as “a blend of dynamic exuberant American design, married to the refined elegance of European history and design.” The room is architecturally separated from the adjacent family room by an engineered walnut backdrop, which houses a doublesided antique granite fireplace. Thanks to an ingenious configuration of mirrored glass, the fireplace seems to be floating in space. The seating area includes a pair of Fritz Hansen “Egg” chairs, which offer visual interest and pops of color to an otherwise subdued color palette. “In a space you have to live with every day, pops of color seem to be more long-lasting and soothing,” Michael notes. They are partnered with sling chairs, also from Fritz Hansen, a daybed from Knoll Studio, and a sofa table from Niba Home. The white armless lounge seating and the glass-and-polished-steel cocktail table are both Michael Wolk designs. It’s a testament to Michael’s talent and finesse as a craftsman and designer that his pieces pair seamlessly with these design classics. A Tai Ping wool-blend rug provides warmth and texture while complementing the interplay of various materials and finishes. The kitchen is also home to a number of mid-century classics accompanied by Michael’s custom pieces. The cabinetry is a Poliform design executed in gray-stained oak. Countertops are Corian. Knoll’s Arabescatto marble-topped Saarinen table with lacquer base is surrounded by Saarinen executive chairs in a light walnut finish and Pollack fabric. Made of walnut and resting on a polished chrome base, the Wolk-designed buffet serves to delineate the open layout kitchen from the adjacent family room. The flooring is a neutral-colored Gohera limestone; its soft, contemporary taupe shade Design + Decor

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The powder room features slate finishes and Wolk-designed built-ins.

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The family room invites games and relaxation. A custom billiard table from Mitchell Pool Tables is unapologetically edgy.

with hints of fossil fragments makes it the perfect foundation for the timeless color scheme that predominates throughout the home. The dining area is another space in which Michael obliged the clients’ wish for modern design coupled with sumptuous outdoor vistas. The chandelier is from Bocci, and the clean lines and finishes pair perfectly with the contemporary artwork. Michael designed the dining table and a stunning glassenclosed wine rack. Whether the homeowners are entertaining guests or delighting in a family meal, the room rewards with dazzling touches. Customized Craftsmanship Michael’s dedication to customization stems from his formal training as a cabinet maker. As a student at Pratt Institute in New York City, Michael started his first business renovating brownstones and spent summers learning the craft of boat building. After graduating, he moved to Florida, where he began designing, building and installing furniture, walls, ceilings and built-ins—truly working “in the trenches” as a craftsman. This wealth of experience and knowledge enable

him to offer his clients an exceptional level of personalization. “I can have a meaningful dialogue with manufacturers because of my experience as a designer,” Michael explains. “ The clients benefit because they get a high level of personalization and customization.” The master bedroom is a tranquilly staged interior that exudes calm. The purity of the geometry is reflected in the rectangles of the built-in cabinetry, which is executed in a high-gloss lacquer finish. This is another Michael Wolk design—along with the bed, lounge chairs, ottoman, dresser and mirror. The soothing color palette diffuses natural light, which floods the space. Textural layering is achieved through the Edelman embossed-leather headboard and the hide rug by Kyle Bunting. A Conduit to the Natural World The spa-inspired master bath is a celebration of Michael’s credo that “design takes precedence over the politics of prevailing trends and styles.” Reduced to the simplicity and symmetry of geometric elegance, Michael custom designed the cabinetry, countertops, mirror, shower, doors, sink and flooring in this oasis. One enters the sanctuary through a set of Design + Decor

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Tailored tranquility in the master of the pool.

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The spa-like interior of the master bath.

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Outdoor Florida living featuring an Ipe wood cove ceiling designed by Michael Wolk is perfect for entertaining.

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custom doors that lead to a passageway composed of rectangular “stepping stones” that culminate in a sunken Venetian bath. The wall was opened up to reveal a view onto the garden. A rain shower head fills the tub below, completing the ultimate expression of a bathroom designed to connect to the outdoors without sacrificing privacy. Michael has distilled his design approach and philosophy to the axiom “making design matter,” which underscores the design process as creation and execution—a marriage of functionality and beauty. This exceptionally sophisticated residence is a tribute to the transformative powers of good design. Michael’s creations are, as he notes, “firmly grounded in the reality of time constraints and budgets,” yet the energy that permeates every space seems to transcend any practical considerations. Michael Wolk manages a rare alchemy: He obliges the clients’ vision while respecting often constraining parameters to achieve the sublime. Resources Michael Wolk Michael Wolk Design 31 NE 28th Street Miami, FL 33137 Phone: 305.576.2898

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The League Club held their first annual Naples Table at the Ritz Carlton on March 11th. Interior Designers were given the task to create tablescapes under the theme “Celebration�. Attendees enjoyed viewing the creative table tops and enjoyed a presentation with James Farmer Author , Life Style Expert, Interior and Floral Designer.


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n the North Industrial Park of Naples, FL, lies a stone gallery that’s entirely dedicated to service, inspiration and the beauty of natural stone. Its owner, Caleb de Souza, says he founded Naples Stone Gallery to serve as a place “where people can come in and be inspired.” Nearly 36 years ago, Caleb got his start in the stone industry when his father started a granite quarry in Brazil. “My father was into gemstones, all types of semiprecious stones and just stone in general, so I was always surrounded by precious stones when I was a kid,” says Caleb. “I tried to get away from it so many times and tried many different things, but I keep going back to it. It’s my happy place—it’s something I’m just naturally good at.” He decided to take advantage of his passion and talent to start a stone gallery for homeowners and designers to use as a source of information and inspiration. “Our goal is to be a company where people can come and be inspired—where they can find the best of the best material, regardless of the price point,” he says. “My dream is to challenge the best architects, the best designers, the best fabricators and artists in town, and simply be a place that serves the local Naples community.” Since its doors first opened, Naples Stone Gallery has been a “library and a resource for designers to come and ask technical and specific questions so they’re free to design,” he says. “That’s their part, and we make sure they’re comfortable with the materials we’re giving them.” The company works with designers and homeowners by trying “to make them feel welcome, to build a rapport with the customers, and to listen to them. We ask, ‘What are you doing? What are you thinking?’ We listen, we ask questions and then we try to paint a picture for them to


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help them better understand and shape their own vision.” Naples Stone Gallery is a place where Caleb can show his customers the splendor of natural stone. “When people come in the store, they’re overwhelmed, and it feels like a task,” he says. “I see it as an opportunity for them to see something beautiful.” Naples Stone Gallery 2054 Trade Center Way Naples, Florida 34109 239.309.0609

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Design + Decor Spring 2019 Southwest Florida

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