Design + Decor Florida Fall 2023

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FALL 2023



A modern cottage welcomes a family to its new Florida home. Story by Meryl Siegman Photography by Diana Todorova


A SPLENDID COASTAL COTTAGE IN NAPLES A simple renovation turns into a complete reimagination. Story by Meryl Siegman Photography by Michael Kaskel


Adelyn Charles Interiors designs a couple’s magnificent coastal retreat that is inspired by the architecture and style of the Carolinas.

Story by Danielle Porter Photography by Blaine Johnathan





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16 Publisher’s Letter 26 Ask The Experts 120 Profile

20 Melange 30 In the Field

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DESIGN +DECOR FALL 2023 Editor-in-Chief Matthew J. Kolk 203-820-1092 Contributing Writers Deborah Brannon, Lisa Gant, Susan Heller, Pam Gersh, Sean Jarvis, Ross Robinson, Meryl Siegman, 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 Janine Vairo | Design + Decor 349 Forest Hills Blvd Naples, Florida 34113

Design + Decor is published six issues per year. To subscribe:; Subscriptions: one year, $21; two years, $38. Back issues can be purchased at For editorial inquiries: Editor, Design + Decor, 349 Forest Hills Blvd Naples, Florida 34113 or e-mail: For advertising inquiries: Please call Shelley McCormick at 203-545-7091 or e-mail at 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 349 Forest Hills Blvd Naples, Florida 34113 DD-MAG.COM

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Luxury Matchmaking “Luxury is attention to detail, originality, exclusivity and above all quality.”—Angelo Bonati Welcome to our Celebrate Interior Designers issue—formerly the Top 25 Interior Designers issue. We have changed the title to make it a bit more fluid and all-inclusive for the design community. Each year, we create a different theme in the same vein to present the members of the design community to our readers. We highlight them in fun and creative ways, pushing design boundaries and, at times, comfort levels. Our mission has always been to share the people behind the brands, as this is what true marketing is about—helping consumers to know the brand so they can make educated decisions about whom to hire. Our theme this year is “Luxury Matchmaking”—finding your luxury interior designer. I had so much fun putting this issue together. We took a cue from the Proust Questionnaire, a parlor game popularized by French novelist Marcel Proust, who believed that by answering certain questions, an individual will reveal his or her true nature. We posed thought-provoking questions for our interior designers to answer. Within these pages you’ll find their responses and information about their firm, which will help you choose the luxury designer for your next project. I would like to extend my gratitude to our partners who made this experience extra special for our designers. International Design Source opened its showroom to host a dinner catered by Sage Events. Häfele’s Jamie Shelton curated a wine pairing for each course with the help of Bruce Nicols, owner of The Wine Store in Naples. Provident Jewelry furnished jewelry to adorn the outfits of participants, under the curated eye of its manager, Brittany Thiesing. Elite Jets allowed us to shoot the cover shot in its hangar, up against one of its jets. Naples Luxury Imports added a Bentley and a Rolls Royce, while Vespa Naples brought along a couple of Vespa scooters, one of which was vintage. Every participant certainly got the royal treatment! Thank you, everyone, for being part of this special experience! Enjoy the issue!

Shelley McCormick Publisher

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Kravitz Pendant Inspired in part by the big afro hair styles that popularized the 60s, Kravitz Suspension is also a tribute to the bold, multiple award winning rock star, Lenny Kravitz. Eichholtz Solaris Mirror This golden convex mirror is made with layers of gold spikes that glamorously imitate the rays of the sun.

Fabulous for Fall

Eichholtz Del Rio Desk Elevate your home office with the opulent glamour of this Del Rio Desk. The brass accents complement the rich mocha oak veneer beautifully, giving this desk a sense of dazzling warmth.

Soda Murano Glass TablesSoda was born in a Murano furnace where each table is blown, drawn-out and shaped by three master glass-makers. They are equipped with a complex system of burners to keep the same temperature throughout the mould, which is essential to give a hammered feeling to the texture.

Sika Orange Sika is a deer specimen rooted in Japan, whose strength and elegance inspired SIKA Wingback Chair. The most distinctive features of this wing chair are the button detailing in the inner back, the nailhead trim and the brass details of the arms.

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Geisha Chair Designed to perform in a matter that indulges the eyes, the Geisha ‘s curves grace a room with the extravagance and poise of a Kyoto Geisha.

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Wittus Phoenix/Firebird Grill Rises from The Ashes Danish Design with a Flare An interview with Niels and Alyce Wittus, owners of Wittus: Fire By Design Story by Sarah Fader

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esign + Decor: Your company focuses on bringing premier European-designed hearth products to the U.S. Please tell us why. And how do European and American products differ?

Alyce: When we started in 1978, Niels, born in Denmark, felt there was a market for European-style products outside the U.S. We wanted to bring “hygge”—the Danish art of comfortable living and happiness—to this country. Hygge (pronounced “HUE-gah”) is a word you grow up with when you live primarily in Denmark. You can have a hygge evening, playing cards and drinking tea by the fire. You can have that nice older man or woman gazing out over the ocean—they can also be hygge. So it means a lot of different things, but every Dane knows what hygge means. For us it usually means candles—fire like outdoor fire in a Phoenix/Firebird grill. But it can also be wintertime inside, and having a hygge time. It’s not just coziness; it’s warmth and fun.

In general, U.S. products look old-fashioned or traditional, and a lot of people like that. They’ll have a squirrel or a reindeer on the side, like the old Franklin stoves back in the 1800s. There’s nothing wrong with our American stoves, but that’s not the design our clients want. Our clients want something sleek, contemporary and modernlooking. Today, I’d say that 90% of manufacturers in Europe, not just Denmark, hire designers to develop new products for them because they have an eye for design, and that makes a difference. Design + Decor: How does the Phoenix/Firebird grill function as both a grill and a fireplace, and how does the design play into this? Alyce: The Phoenix/Firebird grill is easy to use, and the shape of the grill enables any smoke to be diverted away from the chef. The units are conical in shape, so the whole metal part gets hot, and as it does, smoke wants to go up there. It’s warm air convection, and it’s nice when you’re standing there. You’re not breathing in the barbeDesign + Decor

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cue smoke and flavor, so it’s convenient that way. Most people have problems barbecuing and have to move around because the smoke is always getting in their face. One of the many advantages of using the Phoenix/Firebird grill is that you get less smoke in your lungs when you’re cooking. These grills are easy to move; you can put them anywhere. Two people can lay them down and carry them into the yard, garden, back deck or wherever. That makes them really functional. This wasn’t our design; this was a design from Bent Falk, a famous Danish architect whom we talk about on our website. He’s done quite a few products for us. We make them at Focal Metals in Bethel, CT. Design + Decor: Your Foculus grill acts as both a garden sculpture and a grill. What are the benefits of this piece when utilizing it as a grill? Alyce: It’s great for the whole family. Everyone can participate or watch as the Foculus is being used. This grill is an entirely handmade ceramic bowl where the fire is inside, and there is a stainlesssteel rim. It’s made by the Italian company La Castellamonte, which has been making ceramic stoves for us for many, many years. The company’s craftsmanship in ceramic is amazing, and each grill is unique. There’s a different pattern to each grill, so you have your own—no two are alike. They’re a bit pricey, but they’re handmade, beautiful and functional. Design + Decor: Where are you planning your next trip for sourcing European products? We’re probably heading to Verona, Italy, in 2024. Every two years, the city hosts the world’s largest fireplace and stove trade show. We go there to meet all our suppliers and look for new products. It’s a very innovative show; Americans are beginning to go to it because it has such a high design value. We’re seeing more and more contemporary products coming to the U.S., not only in furniture but also in stove design. People ask, “What do you guys do?” We sort of jokingly say, “We sell warm furniture,” which is true. People don’t come to us only for heat. They come because they like the style; they want something to fit their mid-century house or modern kitchen. Design + Decor: What three elements do you look for when choosing products to carry in your showroom? Alyce: First, we look for great design with quality craftsmanship. We spend time with the company and look at their products. Most companies are certified by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), a standard of quality in manufacturing, which gives them a certain prestige and know-how. We just found a new product in Norway, and we’re having it shipped over to take a look at it. We want to see how it’s built, how easily it comes together, how it functions and so on, so it usually takes about a year or more. Once we like a product and go through the whole process of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) testing, it’s a long process. Second, we look for state-of-the-art technology and manufacturing. This means innovation. We’ve had good luck finding interesting stoves that have a double-burner firebox. We have stoves that create electricity through cold water, a hot firebox type of system. The 28

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Ask the Ex

warm glow, especially technology if the is very light important providesbecause the whole the EPA spectrum emission of color, smoke rather than some standards LED are options so demanding that do not. today. Thoughtful You must home have the andlatest office lighting can technology help define and innovation spaces, create to meet instant those comfort standards, and so make that’s a room feel inviting. something When we lighting have to look our athomes and meet. and offices, how can we think more like a lighting designer? Where do most homeowners go wrong with lighting? Finally, we“Lack look for of vertical productssurface that arelighting,” environmentally says Justin. sound. Many of us forget It depends to light on where the walls you’re and coming window from, coverings. but we say Our thatrooms burnradiate a fantastic ing wood glowiswhen a good light thing. gently It’s comes renewable through energy.the It’scurtains, the heat yet in the latefrom evening, the sun when thatthe gets window stored dressings up as yougoburn dark, it. the Trees space give loses some measure off carbon of comfort dioxide and as they aesthetics. rot in the ground; we know that just by the process of rotting away. Of course, there’s always Illumination is a little essential bit offor extra work, pollution leisurewhen and you’re well-being. burning Expertly something. designed lighting Overall, can revolutionize compared to fossil a room fuels, with wood more burning comfort is stilland a good elegance, showcasing choice. Twenty-five your space to in30 a years wholeago, newweway. had stoves Justin’s thatlighting put out criteria can help 50 grams guideofusparticulates. in properlyNow, lighting with the our EPA’s homes standards, and offices, we’re while reminding down us under to bring one attention gram; it’s amazing. to areas we may have missed. Resource:


JKM Lighting Design Wittus: Fire by Design Justin Keenan Miller, Niels and Founder Alyce Wittus, & Principal OwnersDesigner P.O. Box 1230340 Westchester Avenue, P.O. Box 120 Naples, FL 34101 Pound Ridge, NY 10576 239.380.7001 914.764.5679

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isionary designer Leili Fatemi knew from the age of 10 that she was captivated by design. Drawn to all manner of design books and guides, Leili followed her dreams and built the successful firm, Leili Design Studio, in Bonita Springs, FL. As a life-long learner, she enthusiastically keeps her design education fresh by diligently reading, exploring design destinations and finding new creative inspiration for her choice clients. Her team specializes in high-end residential projects and strives for perfection with thoughtful, clientcentered service. What’s it like for clients who work with Leili Design Studio? The firm offers a fully immersive virtual reality tour of a client’s soon-to-be luxury home by staying up to date with the latest design technology. Collaborate with Leili, and enjoy exploring your newly reimagined space. Admire the fine furniture, accessories, decor and intricate details—all before it’s even ready. Not sure if a picture window is the right size or location to maximize the splendor of the outside? An expert rendering of your home-to-be in virtual reality, with a lead designer by your side, can help make your dream space a reality. Leili Design Studio focuses on delivering projects above expectations and ensuring a fun and stress-free experience for clients. What is your idea of perfect happiness? I enjoy travelling and spending quality time with family and creating the best memories. Perfect happiness is all about family time. What is your greatest fear? Suddenly getting sick and leaving my family. I want to watch and enjoy my family into the future, and be a part of their lives. Also, leaving work unfinished. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? I would still want to be another successful designer if I came back as another person. I’ve always wanted to be a designer; I really fell in love with design at a young age. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? I don’t follow a specific design style. All clients have unique personalities and are different. It’s not personal for me—it’s about my client. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Some mid-century accessories look a little bit odd.

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What design ideas do you want to encompass? Great design has to speak to the homeowner. The home has to be a comfortable space and user-friendly. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Lloyd Wright. He was so inspiring in how he kept natural elements in his design and brought nature inside. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? High Point Market, North Carolina. I also enjoy visiting New York design centers and just travelling to get inspiration. What is your secret pleasure? I enjoy cooking with my kids, reading, travelling and researching the latest technology in my industry. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Life is short! Always be passionate about what you do, and compassionate to others along the way! Leili Design Studio Leili Fatemi, Founder 8800 Bernwood Pkwy, Unit 1 Bonita Springs FL 34135 239.319.0944 Design + Decor

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esigner Carolyn Roy’s sincere respect and appreciation for architectural finishes and fine art help her create stunning, dreamscapestyle retreats for her select clients. A professional interior designer for more than 15 years in South Florida, Carolyn began her career working as an art dealer in New York City, with her own fine arts gallery. Her degree in fine arts and experience working with high-end art provided a natural and exciting transition to luxury interior design. Carolyn’s vision transforms her client’s space into a work of curated art that is unique and a complete reflection of the homeowner. All of Carolyn’s projects look wonderfully singular because, she says, “Each item has a sense of importance. No two houses could ever look the same.” Carolyn uses vintage treasures and quality handmade items to personalize each space. She is also a fan of boutique wallcovering and fabric companies, searching beyond mass-produced items to ensure that her client’s home is both aesthetically beautiful, yet authentic and genuine. Often commissioned to travel, Carolyn’s boutique firm, CR Studio Interior Design, transforms its clients’ luxury homes, whether located on the beach, at a lakeside escape or in a luxury mountain hideaway. “I enjoy researching different types of architecture and studying the site of the property,” Carolyn explains of her deeply thoughtful, holistic approach to interior design. Visit her website and experience the sensationally clean, artistic style she can bring to your next design project. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Maintain gratitude; be content, but curious and challenged; have loving relationships with family and friends; and be where the weather is warm! If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? Audrey Hepburn or Jimmy Buffett. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Shag carpet, velvet wallpaper, anything that traps dust. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Furnishings with a history or that are handcrafted; a focus on fine art; creating an environment where the exterior is a continuation of the interior; wabisabi beauty in the imperfect. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Dorothy Draper, because she was a trailblazer in the industry, and I love her spirit. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Locally, Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach, Newel at the South Florida Design Park for furniture, and Paris Ceramics for architectural finishes. Abroad, 1stDibs brings the world to you! What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? She was an original. CR Studio Interior Design Carolyn Roy, Principal and Interior Designer 290 North Olive Avenue West Palm Beach, FL 33401 561.596.5678 Design + Decor

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esign leader Debra Yelner brings more than 30 years of experience to the homes she transforms in Connecticut and Naples, FL. Having mastered project coordination as both an interior designer and a designer/builder, she is highly sought after by clients new to the area or desiring a professional’s touch. With a bachelor’s degree in interior arts and a minor in art history, she has a deep appreciation for finely crafted antique items, and can expertly integrate treasured family pieces into any home style. Debra is a wealth of wisdom and comfort for those unsure of what to bring along to their new beach estate, making her the ideal designer for anyone relocating from the Northeast to Naples. Her years of experience have won her the trust of repeat clients, who have commissioned her firm, DYL Design, to renovate their vacation homes. With such a deep appreciation for New England and South Florida styles, how did Debra style her own Naples retreat? “Very transitional,” she says, “peppered with antiques from Greenwich, blended in with more contemporary pieces.” Trusted with designing many custom homes and local eateries, including Osteria Tulia, Bar Tulia and The French, Debra has a personalized approach that keeps DYL Designs busy with large-scale residential and hospitality projects. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Good health for my family, friends and financial security. Also, a guarantee to have a straight tee shot down the middle of the fairway!

A car accident or fire. And missing a one-foot putt. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? Both. It really depends on the project and the client. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? The term “Coastal Contemporary,” along with beige and white, gray and white, white and white. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Convincing clients to incorporate what they like, add more color and have less fear of making a mistake. Please yourself. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? From Emily Dickinson: “The pedigree of Honey Does not concern the bee; A clover, any time, to him, Is aristocracy.” Humility. DLY Design Debra Yelner, Principal 203.921.5566

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esigner Jackie Armour wanted to be involved in design from the time she was 10 years old. Pursuing her dreams, she attended the University of Florida and graduated with a business degree, then received her interior design degree. Her thriving firm, JMA Interior Design, specializes in new construction, interior architecture and construction specifications. The company is the first stop for any homeowner needing design expertise for a new project. What sets JMA Interior Design apart from other design firms? Jackie and her team are very client-centered in their approach, with the client’s unique lifestyle the focus of all design decisions.

In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? My work combines both. We tend to use a lot of color, but our interiors are more clean, so it brings out the most subtle side. Our design style overall is more edited—that’s where the subtle comes in.

For Jackie and her team, each client’s family dynamic, schedules and routines—even family pets—factor into the important equation of personalized design. “If you have five dogs and seven grandkids, we will not be suggesting silks,” Jackie explains. The final results have to be realistic, and the luxury needs to be livable, according to the firm’s mantra. Jackie’s own family has a rescue dog, so she knows exactly which sumptuous, quality materials can endure the joys of everyday life and frequent use. Check out to view examples of the firm’s work, and consult with Jackie to learn how JMA can beautify your space with livable luxury.

If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Mary McDonald, an LA-based designer. I think her personality is great; she’s just really funny.

What is your idea of perfect happiness? Being able to travel all around the world as much as possible. What is your greatest fear? Not being able to be involved in some fashion in interior design.

What design ideas do you want to encompass? Introduction of color, especially here in Florida because we have so much bright sunlight. Things tend to get washed out in Florida, so we can be a little bit bolder than in the Northeast. When people move here, they should embrace the fact that they can make bolder choices in Florida.

What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Antique Row in West Palm Beach. Abroad, the Paris Flea Market. JMA Interior Design Jackie Armour, Founder and Principal 1907 Commerce Lane, Suite 103 Jupiter, FL 33458 561.743.9668

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riginally from Michigan, Lyndsey Davis Nicklas, principal designer at award-winning L Design Studio, has made South Florida her home for the past 17 years. Studying the professional design craft from all angles, she previously worked in the construction remodeling industry, learning about the structural systems that are essential in gaining an edge in interior design. Founded more than 15 years ago, Lyndsey’s full-service firm specializes in the whole spectrum of the development and design process, and welcomes a variety of exciting challenges. Its lush, up-scale results are proof of its impeccable design expertise. Lyndsey’s creative spirit and natural eye for aesthetics keep her busy with clients who seek out her services. L Design Studio offers every client the same boutique-style, personalized attention, whether they require a small remodel, a large renovation or a turnkey project. Lyndsey’s down-to-earth, friendly personality makes renovating your dream home or vacation retreat a stress-free experience. Visit the firm’s website to view the wide variety of beautiful designs she has created for her clients. What is your idea of perfect happiness? A glass of wine, fresh-cut grass, a cool summer evening, and friends and family sitting around telling stories and laughing about good ol’ times. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? I would come back as a dog. They love fiercely, they are loyal, and they are content just being. They live a simple, fulfilling life. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? I’d be okay if we closed the book on Modern Farmhouse. There are only a few places where that look is still vibing. L Design Studio Lyndsey Davis Nicklas, Principal Designer 6561 Taylor Road #1 Naples, FL 34109 239.260.5165

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MICKEY DICKSON MARZUCCO Photos by Michael Kaskel


ith more than 20 years of expertise in luxury interior design and a solid foundation of knowledge in the building industry, Mickey Dickson Marzucco offers a comprehensive, ground-up experience for her clients. Mickey and her team at Ecru & Ebony Design are expert project managers, starting with the beginning stages of a build, engaging in meetings with the architect, and carrying through to the final high-end touches that spotlight Mickey’s mastery of interior design. Though the firm is based in Naples, FL, the team travels to other states as well, creating and beautifying primary residences, secondary homes and vacation getaways for homeowners. Listening to her clients is the most important part of delivering superior service for each unique project, says Mickey, as, ultimately, the style and taste of a home are all about the homeowner. She also nudges her clients beyond their comfort zone, however, offering ideas they thought would never like—but end up loving. Over the years, her meticulous attention to detail and friendly rapport have built long-lasting business relationships, with clients returning for new design services, assistance with a renovation or additional projects. Visit Ecru & Ebony Design’s website to peruse some of the luxury designs Mickey has created for her residential clients in Naples and beyond. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Spending time watching our son play baseball, sing and play guitar. Also, cherishing the moments when “Jack’s Grandpa” comes to enjoy long visits with us. 44

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What is your greatest fear? Personally, losing someone close to me before their time. Career-wise, failing a client. I definitely take it personally. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? I don’t have one favorite place locally, as it depends on the client/style and piece we are looking for. What is your secret pleasure? It is a hard tie between a spa day and watching my son play baseball—almost the only time I’m the loud, proud mom! What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Be yourself—your best self. That is what God gave us. Ecru & Ebony Design Mickey Dickson Marzucco, Principal 5401 Taylor Road, Suite 5 Naples, FL 34109 239.825.1487

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native of Fort Myers, FL, Kristin Lyons of grew up naturally drawn to creativity and design. Like many talented designers, she enjoyed rearranging her room and beautifying her spaces from a young age. Kristin gained years of experience working in luxury design before opening her own firm, KDL Interior Design. Her warm personality and innate artistic gifts have helped her create lasting connections in the interior design world. KDL’s work includes high-end residences, upscale restaurants and elegant office projects, with word-of-mouth referrals keeping the team busy year-round. The KDL Interior Design website is a showcase for designs requested by its repeat clients.


Due to the firm’s rapidly growing success, Kristin’s husband, Chad, joined the company to handle the business side. KDL prides itself on excellent communication, which is key when managing large-budget projects, to ensure that the highest quality results are executed in a timely manner. Kristin explains that each project is tailored exclusively to each individual client. “We create great designs—in tune with what the client requests,” she says. For her own home, Kristin appreciates a mid-century style with clean lines and a beautifully classic design. “Something that will last,” she says, “with more neutral tones for a soft and peaceful environment.”

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What is your idea of perfect happiness? Spending time with my husband and kids in a beautiful location. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? I’d be a really cool cat, living with humans. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? I lean towards subtle, with pops of color and pattern. Something classic and timeless. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Design ideas that embody the senses, with peaceful serenity in a space: balance, scale and color with all your senses gently touched on, evoking a soft feel. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Lloyd Wright—he was a classic. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? By creating timeless places of beauty, comfort and love, we find joy and peace in our surroundings. KDL Interior Design Kristin Lyons, Founder and Principal Designer 7370 College Parkway, Suite 204 Fort Myers, FL 33907 239.317.3103 Design + Decor

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JOYCE OWENS Photos by Josh Fisher


reakthrough architect and designer Joyce Owens is in a class all her own. In 2022 she became the first woman to receive the Gold Medal of Honor from the Florida chapter of the American Institute of Architects, recognizing her important contributions to architecture and the community. She received the organization’s Medal of Honor for Design in 2020, recognizing her as one of the most influential architects in the state. The comfortable niche that her company, Architecture Joyce Owens (AJO), has carved out for itself makes building and interior designing a simple process for clients, as Joyce’s architectural firm can do it all. Referring to herself as a “coastal architect,” Joyce specializes in high-end beachfront properties, ensuring that beautiful views are the main attraction. A true lover of nature and all things outdoors, she ensures that her architectural and interior designs are elegant and inspired by the splendor of beach views. With its holistic approach to design, AJO sees each project as unique, paying special attention to each client’s individual needs. What does the architect/designer ’s own residence look like? Joyce’s house is a 1962 mid-century ranch with a modern aesthetic. The colors she chose include whites and a dark teal, with an overall modern, clean and simple approach. Award-winning and enthusiastically recognized, AJO is a leader in both archi-


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tecture and interior design, ensuring that both are professionally executed at the highest level of excellence. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Water, boat, great food, perfect company and great weather! If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? A pelican, so I can eat lots of fish, live by the water and be in a warm climate. I love the way they dive into the water. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? The trend of everything made in China. We try to be unique about where we get our pieces—unique pieces from Italy, South America or Scandinavia. We try to avoid mass-production items. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Carlo Scarpa from near Verona, northeastern Italy. He did similar work to what my firm does—the architecture and the interiors. He made a lot of his own furniture, very unique and very appropriate for the place. He’s like the Frank Lloyd Wright of Italy in many ways. Where’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Locally, Richlin International. Abroad, Salvatori, in Northern Tuscany. What statement or quote would you want to be remembered by? As an architect, I want to design appropriately for our area. It’s about the function, color and texture that speak of the tropics. My quote is “living and working in Florida.” Architecture Joyce Owens LLC Joyce Owens, Principal Architect 1520 Royal Palm Boulevard, Suite 300 Fort Myers, FL 33919 239.362.1688 Design + Decor

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ought-after designer Diane Torrisi grew up in the best of two worlds, living in both the U.S. and Europe. Travelling back and forth regularly, she still spends time in the culturally rich country of Luxembourg. Her design aesthetics showcase her European influence and her sincere appreciation for true craftsmanship quality, thoughtfully curated art and uncompromising, carefully selected materials. Her own home is reminiscent of a visit to the south of France, demonstrating her traditional French style, tasteful touch of French county and, just for fun, a little Moroccan chic. Diane gets great satisfaction from helping her clients with smaller projects, full-scale redesigns and more. She humbly recognizes that “it takes a village” to create truly exceptional, detailed spaces. Over the years, Diane has assembled a first-class design team to assist her in making the magic happen. Aside from her deep appreciation for beautiful, lush velvet, what sets Diane apart from other interior designers? “She truly cares about her clients,” confirms one professional installer, who works only with top designers. Diane Torrisi Designs and her winning team create exquisite spaces for both high-end residential and select commercial clients. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Holding my first grandchild—next March! If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? Can I turn down this offer? I feel I would be so busy “up there” reconnecting with family and my many dogs, I wouldn’t have time to return! Which do you prefer in interior design—bold or subtle? Why? Tricky question, as it depends on the client, the location, and my mood! What design ideas do you want to encompass? Quality, quality, quality…and good taste! If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Although I consider myself very lucky to know and collaborate with some talented local designers, I would be honored to create anything with a fellow Luxembourg designer, Poll Theis of P &T Interiors (New York). I find his refined sense of style and dark elegance invigorating! What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Angela Fine Furnishings (my go-to furniture place), Judith Liegeois (for exquisite accessories), Naples Lamp Shop (for selection and great customer service) and multiple showrooms in Palm Beach (Meg Braff, HIVE, etc.). What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? “I am going to make everything around me beautiful—that will be my life!”— Elsie de Wolfe Diane Torrisi Designs Diane Torrisi, Owner 27313 Old 41 Road, Suite 3 Bonita Springs, FL 34135 239.595.3384 Design + Decor

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L.A. DERIGGI Photos by Lori Hamilton


ne of only 20 designers selected by the American Society of Interior Designers as part of its “Ones to Watch” honoree program for 2023, designer L.A. DeRiggi is the premier talent powering Hudson Park Interior Design in Naples, FL. His résumé includes a master’s degree in interior architecture and a bachelor’s of science in business, focusing on management and marketing. Originally from Pittsburgh, L.A. found that Naples was the perfect beachside community to settle and grow his business.

other designers through his humble attitude towards his work. His company is honored to serve each client to the highest degree, he says, to ensure that the finished design is tailored entirely to the client’s life with a “form follows function” principle. Indeed, L.A. transforms select residential and commercial properties throughout South Florida with his celebrated functional and contemporary designs. And who are the “Hudson” and “Parker” for whom the firm is named? They are L.A.’s two Shelties, brothers who enjoy lounging in their coastal-inspired home of white walls, linens and light-wood tones

Recognized for his talent by multiple organizations, including his inclu- What is your idea of perfect happiness? sion in Gulfshore Business’ “40 Under 40,” L.A. sets himself apart from I am happiest when I practice gratitude—noticing and acknowledging the 54

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things I am grateful for. This brightens my outlook, boosts my mood and helps me feel more positive in the face of challenges. Life is full of challenges, and it’s easy to get caught up in them. I also love the impact of kindness and supporting each other in our community and beyond. It has a ripple effect. What is your greatest fear? Time. It’s all we have, and once it’s passed, you can’t get it back. We need to live in the moment, always, and even though we are always thinking about and looking for what’s next, it’s in those moments when we slow down that we find the answers. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? I think the difference between bold and subtle is how it is executed. If I have to choose one of these words, it would be subtle, but not to be confused with boring. My approach to interiors is always elegant, timeless, with a sense of tranquility, but that can still include color and contrast. You can have bold elements, as long as it’s designed and executed thoughtfully. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Gray. Farmhouse. Fast furniture. Gray is depressing and lacks personality. Farmhouse: when your Pinterest board or Houzz account starts looking like the “Home” section at Target, it’s time to educate and elevate. Don’t get me wrong—I love a nickel-gap installation, as long as it’s designed and executed thoughtfully. My interiors are never cluttered—always curated. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Form follows function, always. A lot of people know the saying but don’t know what it means. It is the principle that the shape of a building or object should directly relate to its intended function or purpose. By asking the right questions and listening to my clients’ needs, I am able to design a space for how they’d like to use it, elevate it with interior design technical principles, and improve the user experience. Once you understand the foundation, or function, of the space, form happens organically. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Lloyd Wright. In the spring I had the opportunity to stay on the property of Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, and was able to explore the property and grounds. I had visited the home twice prior, but always on guided tours. This was a different experience than when you are on a guided tour with a group of people. I got to explore rooms that typically aren’t open to the public, and take in the spaces for more than just a few moments. In the same area is another property of his, Kentuck Knob, and some of the design elements in the home are thoughtful and intentional, but also beautiful. Form follows function. Now, some of his rooms and hallways are completely not functional, so those are the spaces I would want to collaborate with him on. What is your secret pleasure? Chick-fil-A strawberry milkshake—no whip, no cherry. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? I always ask my clients, “But do you love it?” Because if they don’t, then I didn’t do my job. They should love everything that goes into their space. I want them to feel that love and excitement every time they come home. Every accessory in their space should have a meaning and purpose to it, otherwise it just becomes clutter and can disrupt the energy. Physical clutter increases mental clutter. Hudson Park Interior Design L.A. DeRiggi, Principal 938 Third Avenue North, Suite A Naples, FL 34102 239.326.9236

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JENNA LYNN GETCHELL Photos by Blaine Jonathan


esigner Jenna Lynn Getchell is a graduate of the famed Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles, with a focus on interior architecture. She freelanced extensively before launching her own successful company—the award-winning J. Lynn Design Group. What sets Jenna’s firm apart from others is her company’s powerful attention to detail, especially regarding bespoke architecture. She is known for providing timeless luxury designs, while ensuring a relaxed and enjoyable experience for her select clientele. Jenna brings about results that are both functional and uniquely the client’s own personal style—with the client’s dream home as the goal. Approaching her projects from an architecture-first perspective, Jenna seeks to create a space that is both visually pleasing and exquisitely thoughtful, down to the minute details. Expert project management and budget administration balance the firm’s sought-after professional aesthetic services. Always offering a “designer’s choice” among the selections, J. Lynn Design Group keeps the client involved every step of the way with open communication and superb guidance. The firm serves residential and commercial clients in South Florida and Ohio who seek sophisticated luxury designs delivered effortlessly. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Perfect happiness for me is a boat day with perfect weather, champagne and good friends and family to enjoy it with. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? I would come back as a younger version of myself with the knowledge I have today. This would buy me more time to perfect the timeline of children, marriage and career. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Right now, in the textile world the color palettes coming from Europe are warm, with


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ivory, rust, mauve, chartreuse and gold. While this feels comfortable in the northern states, they don’t give the bright, airy freshness I like to see at the beach or even a lake house. This is a color palette I could live without! If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Kelly Hoppen has been my favorite designer since college. I love her neutral palettes with sharp contrast between upholstery, woods and other hard surfaces. If I had to choose one style, what I love is a neutral palette with layers of texture and high contrast! What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? “I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university.”—Albert Einstein . J. Lynn Design Group Jenna Lynn Getchell, Founder and Creative Director 2403 Trade Center Way Naples, FL 239.784.7134 Design + Decor

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lexis Marie Interiors is the go-to design firm for highly personalized, upscale, full-service residential interior design. Principal Designer Alexis Limb prides herself on bringing in the most talented team members to ensure that every client receives concierge-style, specialized service. What sets this luxury design firm apart? With such a talented, visionary team behind each unique project, the end result is perfection and balance, pleasing to the eye and optimally comfortable and functional for the client. Client happiness is Alexis’ number one goal when approaching any project. Communication with clients and superior, boutiquetailored service enable the design team to take the homeowner’s vision and transform it into a wonderfully livable, functional work of art. Alexis Marie Interiors can assist in any design project, from the initial stages all the way through to project completion, in any design style the homeowner desires. Alexis loves helping families create their home space so they can make memories for a lifetime. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Being surrounded by the people who mean the most to me and seeing them happy. What is your greatest fear? Lizards! If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? Myself, but with the outlook on life I have now. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Super-cold modern, minimalistic design. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Visual interest at every turn, without being overwhelming. Comfortable and timeless, with interesting textures. A place that looks beautiful, where you can still be comfortable. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? There are a lot of California-based designers who I follow and look to for inspiration. I appreciate how a lot of those design firms are very coastal, nature-inspired and ocean-inspired, using incredible detail in their designs. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? For local, for those final touches and accessory shopping, I really like a place called Home and Salvage. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Take all the pictures, make all the memories, and always use the “good” glasses. Alexis Marie Interiors Alexis Limb, Owner and Principal Designer 239.231.3955

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or more than 20 years, Elizabeth Cinquini has been honing her gift of design and sharing her talents with family, friends and fortunate clients. She enjoys helping busy professionals who lack the ability to visualize the possibilities of their spaces. Among her many talents is her mastery at coordinating color and patterns that elevate a space and, in turn, transform her client’s lives with remarkable results. Elizabeth understands how her clients feel when their space doesn’t spark joy—and she knows exactly how to help. Working with Elizabeth is akin to having a sincere, close ally with a trained eye for spotting the potential of a room or house. Throughout the critical design process, her approach is to connect with clients, understand their personalities and build genuine relationships—all key to reducing stress on the homeowners’ part. Indeed, when Elizabeth designs homes for her clients, she also redesigns their lives in exciting ways, ensuring a fabulous result that they never could have imagined, a home they will love for many years to come. What is your idea of perfect happiness? This is a no-brainer! Peacefulness. It’s about how you feel, the people around you. What is your greatest fear? Regret. I’ve always had big ideas, and sometimes people discouraged those


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ideas—but I kept going. Work every day for your dreams, and they will come true. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? A famous singer, like Adele. Which do you prefer in interior design—bold or subtle? Why? Always bold, as you can really bring out the uniqueness in personality. Bold curates the unique. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Very supermodern, minimalist, cold and generic. It doesn’t spark creativity. Right now, I’m sitting at a black-and-white marbled desk with a pink ceiling. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Vibrant spaces that really inspire and enliven your everyday life. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Martyn Laurence Bullard; he’s very iconic. He has designed celebrity homes that are fun and packed with personality. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Small boutiques versus mass retailers, and finding local artists. In Santorini, Greece, I found a small artisan and bought three pottery pieces from his studio. What is your secret pleasure? Travelling. I love to explore countries and cultures. My second secret pleasure is taking personal time for fitness, thoughts and dreams early in the morning. It gets me ready for the day. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Dream big, really outrageous dreams and put in the work to make them come true, so you can live with no regrets. Elizabeth Cinquini Interiors Elizabeth Cinquini, Owner and Creative Director Offices in NYC and Naples, FL 917.674.3539 Design + Decor

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Photos by Blaine Jonathan and Venjhamin Reyes


he daughter of an artist and a builder, Alex Thies grew up playing on her father’s AutoCAD software, used by building professionals, while observing the magic of live construction at countless jobsites. Design came naturally to Alex, who holds a master’s in architecture. Armed with an intricate knowledge of architecture, but leaning towards her artistic gifts, she chose to work in interior design, the perfect path for her, as it combines the creative with the conceptual. Alex’s firm, Adelyn Charles Interiors, primarily serves full-scope new construction design, with its niche being luxury beachfront homes. Alex’s expert team knows exactly what materials will hold up in a sunny and humid coastal environment. The best testimonials for Adelyn Charles Interiors are its repeat clients, who commission the firm to design their vacation retreats in the Bahamas and other island getaways. Alex enjoys getting involved from the beginning of a project, ensuring the form and flow of a space are in harmony, so those last decorative touches look even more polished and spectacular. With all the exciting palette choices at her fingertips, how did Alex style her own home? Warm, neutral, organic and clean, with relaxing hints of green to create a state of peace and comfort for Adelyn and Charles, her two children. Adelyn Charles Interiors creates timeless beauty in South Florida homes, out-of-state residence, and even out of the country, for select clients. What is your idea of perfect happiness? 62

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Being on the boat with my husband and kids. What is your greatest fear? I wouldn’t say a fear, but more of a worry: I worry a lot about taking care of the people around me. I love fiercely, and my family is everything to me, and is so much larger than my immediate family. My husband I both come from big, crazy families, and anyone in my life who is close to me becomes part of that. From friends, to my team, to clients, to my kids’ friends—when you are someone I care for, you become an extension of my family, and I will take you under my wing and worry about you more than I probably should. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? A dolphin. I just love watching them. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? Generally subtle, but I like bold features. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? All signs with writing on them. What design ideas do you want to encompass? I always abide by a functional approach to design. Home is for

comfort and a state of peace. What is your secret pleasure? I love to bake! I formally had a cupcake bakery. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Something I say often to my team and my children is, “Just be a good human.” In all instances of life, I think that holds true. There are so many talented people in the world, and there will always be someone better/faster/stronger, but just be a good human, do the right thing, act with integrity, follow a strong moral compass, and you will always either come out on top, or at the very least feel good about what you have done and how you have done it. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Jake Arnold, a young British designer. His designs have a timeless, organic flair. Adelyn Charles Interiors Alex Thies, Owner and Lead Designer 3920 Via Del Rey, Suite 3 Bonita Springs, FL 34134 239.734.0449 Design + Decor

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LISA GUILD CASEY O’BRIEN Photos by Barry Grossman


MG Design Consulting Inc. specializes in designing unique luxury residential spaces that are as distinct as their individual clients. The nationally recognized firm is based in Naples, FL, yet the team travels frequently to serve its many repeat clients. Without a signature design style to impose, principal interior designer Lisa Guild and her team help people explore what they love, and offer luxury options based on the particular client’s requests. Being open to all design styles results in a creative and rewarding challenge for Lisa and her team, with their lucky clients as the beneficiaries. Lisa says her firm may design several different houses for various family members, yet each residence will be stunningly different and singularly individual. Lisa acquired 30 years of experience in designing before she launched LMG Design Consulting Inc., which has been thriving for more than 10 years. Team member Casey O’Brien holds a business degree, is an interior design graduate, and specializes in V-Ray, an architectural and rendering software. Using V-Ray, Casey creates superb-quality images that enable clients to see their homes styled and designed while still in the conceptual stages. Casey’s favorite part of her job is exploring the different types of styles her clients request. LMG Design Consulting Inc. is open to tackling a variety of projects and design challenges, including commercial ventures. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Lisa: Candles lit, music playing, cooking in our kitchen for our family, with all of them home together.


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Casey: Clean house, clean sheets, showered, face oils on, candles lit, air on full blast, getting into my bed after a long day. And knowing I did my best that day. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Lisa: Maximalism, historical resonance, personal spaces. I want to embrace and collaborate on design ideas with our interesting clients on their varied projects. Casey: Timeless, layered spaces with lots of texture. Interiors with architectural character. Unique pieces and decor that encompass each client and create a talking point for those who visit their home. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Lisa: Ralph Lauren. I love the mix of Americana, leather and lace, history and comfort. I appreciate his ability to capture an American aesthetic in a modern way. Casey: Susan Hable. I love her ability to incorporate color in her textiles and art without overpowering the space and dictating the palette. Her ability to mix modern and classic elements in a fun, casual way is super cool. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Lisa: Vintage, antique and secondhand malls, particularly in small towns around the U.S. Casey: Chesterdales—it’s a great consignment shop in Naples. From antique to more current designs, there is something there for everyone. What is your secret pleasure? Lisa: Chiefs football. Casey: Reality TV. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Lisa: Ready? Set. Let’s go! Casey: Money talks, wealth whispers. LMG Design Consulting Inc. Lisa Guild, Principal Casey O’Brien, Design Consultant 6001 Taylor Road Naples FL 34109 239.293.0016 Design + Decor

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NAN WRIGHT Photos by Giovanni Photography


an Wright, principal and CEO of Wright Interior Group, has an impressive portfolio of large-scale renovations and new builds. After graduating from Carnegie Mellon University with a bachelor ’s degree in design, she founded and led a marketing firm in New York City, where she was located for 16 years. After moving to Naples, FL, Nan focused on her passion for interior design. She started by transforming her own home, refinishing furniture and making her own stylish window treatments. People loved what she did and took notice of her interior design talents. With her entrepreneurial background in closing deals, she founded Wright Interior Group, and soon


her design expertise was in high demand. Nan creates warm, welcoming environments that are inspired by traditional and classic design. What motivates Nan? Her home in the beautiful Tuscany region in the heart of Italy. When not living in sunny Naples, FL, Nan is visiting her second home and gaining fresh ideas and inspiration for her design clients. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Visiting my home in Tuscany and exploring the amazing food and drink in and around the area.

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What is your greatest fear? That I won’t ever truly retire because I love what I do for “ work,” which to me is really not work as most of us know it. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? My dog, Caiya, who is loved beyond beyond by me and everyone who meets her. It’s a pleasure to introduce her and her personality to people we meet. Which do you prefer in interior design—bold or subtle? Why? Both—why choose? There are times to be bold—like a powder room, for surprise and drama—and there are times to be subtle—like a bedroom, for rest. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? Gray and white—too cold. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Welcoming environments with warmth and functionality for everyday living, along with an amazing visual environment that clients are proud to share with their family and friends. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Gehry, because he truly thinks outside the box! What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? I find inspiration everywhere I look. I interpret a ceiling from a commercial space for a residential client, or I see a background set on a TV show that might make a great headboard detail. Inspiration is everywhere, and I’m always absorbing ideas to translate to my interiors. What is your secret pleasure? Spending time with family and close friends playing bocce, going to movies and having potluck dinners. And decompressing by binge-watching a Netflix series. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? “Live, love, laugh.” I am passionate about everything I do every day: living life to the fullest; loving my family and friends, and being grateful for my amazing work family; and laughing as much as possible! Wright Interior Group Nan Wright, Principal and CEO 6001 Taylor Road Naples, FL 34109 239.260.4850

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DANIELLE REARDON Photography by Baline Johnathan


esigner Danielle Reardon studied architecture at Cornell University and worked for famed designer Ralph Lauren—all before earning her interior design degree. She acquired years of experience prior to launching her one-stop building and interior design company, Abodeable Interiors, which has been in ultra-high demand since it opened. The firm’s exceptional work has won Abodeable Interiors multiple repeat clients, all of whom offer glowing word-of-mouth recommendations. The company’s creative ideas and precision execution of projects have resulted in customer trust and continued company success. Abodeable Interiors is wonderfully unique because of its magic of three—it is a licensed interior design company; it is an experienced, licensed contractor; and it has a lovely storefront to visit, Abodeable Home, a boutique featuring luxury furnishings and accessories, located in Alexander’s Plaza at 4085 Tamiami Trail. Abodeable team members often travel for their loyal clientele— designing, building and finishing each upscale home or retreat in accordance with their clients’ own individual tastes. Clients with multiple projects often request each home to feel ultimately distinct and look completely different from their other retreats. Without a signature look to impose on her clients,


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Danielle always delivers, making each residence special, with a remarkable character all its own. What is your idea of perfect happiness? I don’t know if perfect happiness exists. I am more of a realist, and I recognize that everything can always be improved upon, that everyone has a different opinion to bring to the table. I have felt completely happy while celebrating my children’s successes—these are the only times I can be completely still in the moment and absorb that exact space in time. Other than that, I always have my eye on the next step and am focusing on the future—how I can learn, improve and grow. What is your greatest fear? Not taking risks—the fear of fear. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? It depends on my mood. I am sounding so noncommittal. I have clients who love calming monochromatic palettes, and others who prefer stronger, more vibrant design schemes. The beauty of being an interior designer is that I can fulfill many different design desires because it is not just one home. I get to design loud and bold at one client’s, soft and serene at another’s, beachy textures on another site, and glitz and glam at yet another—but I am never forced to commit to just one. Even in my private homes, I am always looking at the return on investment—never a forever home. One house may have a coastal California vibe, while another property may be designed in a masculine, sleek, Manhattan chic style. I never stay in one place very long. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? I just opened up a flagship furniture and accessory boutique here in Naples called Abodeable Home, so I would have to say that is my favorite place to shop! We will be hosting a launch party in early December, when the season starts to kick into gear. I am originally from the New York City area, where fashion and interior design shopping are limitless. I do not have a favorite haunt or a “go-to” store, as I am very particular in what I am looking for at all times. It is simply hit or miss—never does one store have everything I am looking for. This challenge lends to an eclectic nature that my projects encompass. When travelling, I love local markets where artisans gather, and I can find one-of-a-kind handcrafted pieces that tell a story and create a memory. What is your secret pleasure? I never stand still and never have downtime. To relax, I run. I actually develop some of my best design solutions while running. I do not have hobbies, and what may excite me today may bore me tomorrow. I can be completely quiet and introspective at one moment, and gregarious and hysterical the next. People who truly know me think I am funny (so they say), but I am sure those who don’t know me think I am a bore. Once I accomplish anything, I am immediately on to the next challenge. Maybe seeking the challenge, the path to success, is my secret pleasure? What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? I do not want to be someone with regrets in the end. I do not want to ever say, “I could have, should have, but didn’t.” I’m grateful for the opportunity that each day affords me to do better and be better, and I hope to leave a positive mark on this world once I am gone. Abodeable Interiors LLC Danielle Reardon, Principal Designer 4085 Tamiami Trail North, Unit B-105 Naples, FL 34103 239.920.3190 Design + Decor

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CATHERINE BAKER JESSICA LOZANO Photos by Matt Steeves and Massa Designs

Catherine Baker

Jessica Lazano

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live Daniel Home is a notable name in interior design and fine furnishing throughout South Florida. Two exceptional interior designers that Clive Daniel Home is fortunate to have on their team are Catherine Baker and Jessica Lozano. Catherine is ASID and NCIDQ credentialed, with more than 25 years of valuable experience transforming spaces from the ordinary to the incredible. Jessica is a marketing and communications expert who brings a host of priceless qualities to the team, including her natural gifts for art and design, fresh ideas and viewpoints.

These two designers collaborate perfectly together, sharing their expert perspectives, so the end aesthetic results of their projects are thoughtful and truly reflections of their clients. Highly attentive to detail, they listen closely, and ask key questions to explore what their client truly loves and, just as importantly, what they dislike. Often clients are “telling you what they want, without even knowing it,” notes Catherine, which reveals the designers’ sincere commitment to listening and producing exceptional results. Contact Clive Daniel Home in Naples and request the team whose results speak for themselves: top designers Catherine Baker and Jessica Lozano. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Catherine: Happiness comes from making everyone you love and cherish happy. I always say, “I am only as happy as my unhappiest child.” Happiness is also achieved by pleasing your clients. Jessica: Getting a design project where budget is no object and always making sure my clients are happy. What is your greatest fear? Catherine: The quote, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!” Jessica: My biggest fear would be to not entirely fulfill my client’s vision for their home design. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Catherine: Through history, there have been numerous icons that have educated and impressed each of us. Dorothy Draper is a woman I would have loved to collaborate with to achieve her classic style. Jessica: This would definitely be Zaha Hadid. Her work is truly spectacular. What is your secret pleasure? Catherine: Surrounding myself with exquisite items and experiencing new adventures. Jessica: My secret pleasure would be my expensive tastes. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Catherine: The last line of The Irish Blessing, “May God hold you in the palm of His hand.” Jessica: “Believe you can and you’re halfway there,” by Theodore Roosevelt. Clive Daniel Home Catherine Baker, Interior Designer Jessica Lozano, Interior Designer 2777 Tamiami Trail North Naples FL 34103 Catherine: 412.576.4373 Jessica: 239.246.5355

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TINA MARIE MARGRANDER Photos byNaples Kenny and Darren Miles

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esigner Tina Margrander, known affectionately as “Tina Marie” by clients who love her, began her studies with architectural design before realizing how much she enjoyed the planning of interior space. With 16 years of design experience on her résumé, she had a host of painters and jobsite helpers ready to call upon when she opened her firm, Tina Marie Interiors. Her first priority is creating a fantastic home space while adhering to her clients’ budgets and deadlines. Besides word-of-mouth referrals and repeat clients who ask her to design their vacation homes, the biggest compliments for Tina come from the people who work with her every day. They say she’s always calm under pressure and treats everyone on the jobsite with kindness and respect. A native of the Bonita Springs/Naples area, Tina thoroughly enjoys transforming homes for her residential clients. Another of her talents is helping people come out of their comfort zone—especially when new residents move to the Sunshine State from other climates. What works in the Midwest may not transition perfectly to a warm, humid climate and coastal weather. Tina helps clients create their dream homes while gently introducing them to new ideas and possibilities that will delight them. Her own house is family-friendly, welcoming her children’s friends into a lovely space with tasteful grays, blues and weathered wood. Practicality and durability— without sacrificing elegant style—are key to the design. Visit the Tina Marie Interiors website to see examples of her firm’s classic and sophisticated designs.

their eyes. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? I’d come back as a person and try to be a better version of my former self. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Joanna Gaines. Her attention to detail and simple uses of textures are just beautiful. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? Miromar Outlets. What is your secret pleasure? Enjoying a glass of wine (or two) and reading a spicy romance novel. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Thank you for everything. I couldn’t do it without you!

Tina Marie Interiors LLC Tina Marie Margrander, Owner & Principal Interior Designer 28410 Bonita Crossings Boulevard, Unit 270 Bonita Springs, FL 34135 239.301.0086 What is your idea of perfect happiness? Surprising my kids with something unexpected, and seeing the pure joy in Design + Decor

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lex Zapirain puts multiple talents to use when designing residential projects for his clients in South Florida. An engineer by trade and a graduate of the Miami Art Institute, he worked for top design firms before launching his own successful business, Alex Zapirain Designs. Viewing a design project with the benefit of an engineering background enables him to create spaces that offer exceptional visual appeal while maximizing function and purpose. Alex shares this insight about his process: “The key to success is listening.” Listening and learning from each client, he explains, helps not only the current client, but the ones that follow. If he is designing a kitchen for a well-known celebrity chef, for example, Alex learns valuable lessons that can be passed on to the next clients, improving their spaces beyond what they had anticipated. Alex also offers an unexpected botanical bonus in his work. For clients who want to bring the beauty of nature inside, who long for a home enriched by plants, Alex has the horticultural knowledge to help. Educated as a botanist, he knows exactly which plants will thrive in a given area, and which ones to add to the decor. His own home is beautifully adorned with a variety of plants, in addition to being kid-friendly, pet-friendly and “Cu80

ban-friendly—we love to talk and laugh,” he explains. Alex Zapirain Designs takes on mainly large projects, but the team enjoys the occasional challenge of a smaller project. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Be happy doing what you love and enjoying what you do. I love imperfection; life isn’t perfect. Symmetry is not how my brain works. What is your greatest fear? Not to be able to deliver what my clients are expecting. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? A better version of myself. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? Bold, because it’s unique—it’s a way to express yourself. I add some subtle to bold designs, to feel homey, cozy and inviting. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? White and chrome is overdone, too cold. Your house reflects you.

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What design ideas do you want to encompass? Less is more. I like to appreciate great craftsmanship. Very monochromatic. I like to mix patterns and textures, functional and practical. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Kelly Wearstler. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? I’m a Miami guy, so many modern, contemporary stores. When travelling, I love South American quality craftsmanship. Italians are the leaders in furniture. What is your secret pleasure? I have another full-time job—caring for my plants! I have a greenhouse and a huge backyard. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Don’t try too hard; life is not perfect. Enjoy the process and enjoy life. Alex Zapirain Designs Alex Zapirain, Director of Interior Design 5099 Tallowood Way Naples, FL 34116 305.761.0316 Design + Decor

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atasha Pereira’s natural artistic gifts and her bachelor’s degree in architecture and interior design were the perfect combination for her to launch Natasha Pereira Interior Design. She began with smaller projects and mid-sized remodels, and her work quickly gained notice and started to flourish. Over the past 13 years her firm has grown considerably and now takes on much larger projects, including whole-home renovations, new builds, commercial properties and hospitality projects, such as restaurants and bars. Natasha begins the design process by listening closely to her clients’ wants and needs, and follows through with expert guidance in creating a perfectly styled, individualized space. Her priority is personalization, with the use of exquisite furnishings and customized accessories. The amazing team members at Natasha’s firm are eager to undertake all design opportunities and decorative challenges, both small and large. Their goal is to make the design process fun and easy for their clients, while delivering upscale, elegant results. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Peace and quiet. A tranquil setting with my friends. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? My dog, little Emmy. Which do you prefer in interior design—bold or subtle? Why? Subtle. It’s tranquil, calming and soothing. What design trends do you want to put to rest forever? A little bit of everything is better than too much. Like too much French Country—less is always better. What design ideas do you want to encompass? Natural elements we can relate to as humans. They can really tie in a whole space. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Lloyd Wright. Organic, simplistic and clean. That really draws me to him. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? In Miami—Artefacto. It’s modern, yet organic. Abroad, United Colors of Benetton. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Life is beautiful, and we choose how to enjoy it. We’re surrounded by beauty and people to embrace, so always take in the good and focus less on the bad. Natasha Pereira Interior Design Natasha Pereira, Principal 1719 Trade Center Way, Suite 10 Naples, FL 34109 239.596.9362 Design + Decor

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nnovative designer Christopher Michiels started on a path toward architecture, but soon discovered he had a remarkable talent and gift for transforming interior spaces with a distinct flair and true originality. While earning his design degree, he worked for a Chicago design firm, gaining recognition and experience. Today, his luxury design firm, Haute Living Interiors, serves the South Florida region, Chicago and many other cities whose clientele are ready for an exciting redesign. Haute Living Interiors can help design your new build or remodel, expertly detailing your upscale home to the last artistic finish. Christopher listens to his clients and works closely with them to help create the home of their dreams. With access to so many options available, how did Christopher style his own residence? “Right now, it’s leaning on a modern Miami-type of aesthetic,” he says. Christopher brings a cultured, whole-home approach to design. He loves travelling to find new inspiration, discover intriguing design styles, and meet up with the best artisans and manufacturers in the world—all in the interests of better serving his clientele and delivering superior, uncompromising luxury design. What is your idea of perfect happiness? Building a family compound on the Greek island of Santorini, where family, friends, and friends of friends can come enjoy the beautiful surroundings and stunning decor I dream of creating. It has always been a goal of mine to have a home on the water that is accessible to a multitude of other countries, cultures and history. If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, who or what would it be? Being Aquaman would be pretty killer, but coming back as a long-flight bird would also be surreal. In interior design, which do you prefer—bold or subtle? Why? Can’t I be a little bit of both? I am obsessed with clean and restrained dynamic architectural details and integrated lighting that builds the bones of the space. Then I move on to purposeful space planning of lifestyle for furnishings (typically, also more on the subtle side). Then I highlight everything with some bold drama in wallcovering, art, area rugs, etc. In a few years, you can very easily freshen up or change the look altogether to appease changing tastes and whims. If you could team up with one iconic designer/architect with whom to create a room, who would that be, and why? Frank Gehry. His iconic designs are landmarks, and he pioneered new and unique material applications to create his concepts. He is a true visionary. What’s your favorite place to shop locally? Abroad? The Chicago Merchandise Mart was home for years, and I still find it one of the best resource centers. Abroad, I always love to shop and hunt for something from each country I visit—something that embodies my experience there and captures the vibe of the visit. What is your secret pleasure? Flip-flops. Never in a million years would I have thought I’d be the guy looking to ditch his Gucci loafers for a stylish pair of flip-flops and linen pants until I moved here to Florida. What statement or quote do you want to be remembered by? Open your mind to the opportunity—allow yourself to see what adventure lies on the other side of saying yes! Haute Living Interiors by Christopher Christopher Michiels, Owner 10800 Corkscrew Road, Unit 214 Estero, FL 33928 239.250.7200

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A modern cottage welcomes a family to its new Florida home Story by Meryl Siegman | Photography by Diana Todorova


t was a dream come true. A family of four from the suburbs of New York City had been vacationing in Naples, FL, for years. They always stayed in the same charming turn-of-the-century cottage, often imagining what it would be like to move permanently to this enchanting resort city on the Gulf of Mexico.

They found the perfect location for their new home, a property with direct access to a saltwater canal in Royal Harbor, and stunning views of a tranquil park across the water, with no roads in sight. An upscale


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waterfront community, the neighborhood is home to mostly year-round residents. The first order of business was to tear down the existing house on the lot, then get to work on the new home. The Right Architect Makes All the Difference Enter MHK Architecture, a Naples-based architectural firm whose driving principles are based on reputation, talent and hard work. “When we were staying at the cottage with my parents, my twin sister and I would walk around the neighborhood looking at homes,” explains Erin

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The gabled roof is composed of standing seam aluminum. The Andersen 400 Series windows are designed to exceed code, withstanding winds of up to 75 mph.

Meador, a family member who is now an assistant architectural associate at MHK. “Every house we fell in love with was designed by MHK.” It’s no coincidence that the Meador family hired the company to help them build their own house when the time came. Founded in 2009 as a residential design firm with a simple vision, MHK has expanded to include 10 satellite studios and extend its practice to resorts, hospitality, mixed-use, commercial and multifamily residential projects. With a strong commitment to excellence and a desire to exceed

its clients’ expectations, the firm has a portfolio that includes hundreds of projects throughout the United States and the Caribbean. Taking a boutique approach to all its residential projects, it has the goal of helping successful and visionary people build their dream home with a process that is more enjoyable than they ever thought it could be. Other members of the team included Calusa Bay Interior Design, a Naples residential interior design firm consisting of a group of creative and talented design professionals whose passion is to create simply fabulous Design + Decor

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The pocket doors in the living room disappear into the wall when open, uniting the interior with the great outdoors

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spaces, and Big Island Builder, a premier concierge builder in Naples since 1999. Coastal Contemporary Design “Because the family had been staying at an older historic cottage in Naples, they were very taken by coastal design,” says John Orgren, residential studio director at MHK. “Naples is growing and changing, but it still has a small-town feel. The few older cottages that are left have charm, but they’re smaller and typically need a lot of work to accommodate a modern lifestyle.” His firm loves working in the realm of the coastal contemporary style, he continues, with designs that reproduce its charming exteriors, but interiors that are better suited to life in the 21st century. The house was designed in keeping with coastal architecture, which is defined by earthy textures, clean lines, neutral colors and lots of windows to access the gorgeous views and ample sunlight that are abundant in Southwest Florida. The style features open and bright interiors and a simple, elegant “beachy” essence that mirrors the color palette of the natural environment. It is not uncommon to find an open-concept floor plan, large windows and sliding glass doors that blur the lines between the indoors and outdoors. “Coming from the Northeast, we looked forward to taking advantage of the warm weather all year long,” Erin explains. “We wanted a home that was comfortable and casual, with a large livable outdoor space and a great view across the ocean-access canal.” True to contemporary cottage style, the house features a grand open-concept plan with large expanses of glass that lead to a pool and the salt-water canal beyond. The architects also created a generous covered outdoor space complete with fireplace and grill. A second-story balcony Design + Decor

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overlooks the pool and canal, while another balcony over the front door faces west to capture the gorgeous sunsets. Both Open and Private Space Another priority was an abundance of both open space and private areas. “In addition to open communal spaces,” Erin says, “we wanted some places for guests and family to have some privacy.” John adds, “This house packs in great living areas, but it isn’t oversized or vacuous. There’s not a lot of empty space: every corner has something interesting happening, and every square foot is usable and filled with character.” Erin concludes, “The design also helps us create an indoor/outdoor lifestyle that we can enjoy during the winter season in Florida.” The two-story, 4,000-square-foot house, completed in the spring of 2023, features three bedrooms, four bathrooms and an upstairs loft with an office that can double as a guest room. On the ground level is the master suite, along with a garage that opens into an ample mudroom with built-in custom cabinetry. The kitchen is truly the heart of the home. As John describes it, “The plan is so open that you can be in the kitchen and see everything that’s going on in the living and dining rooms, the outdoor living space and even the pool. It’s visually connected to all the other spaces.” A sliding glass pocket door disappears discreetly into the wall, giving the living room a wide-open view of the pool and the park across the canal, bringing the glorious outdoors right inside—a pleasure that is savored by the former New Yorkers. Practicality Plays a Role What good would all this architectural splendor be without practical consid92

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The walk-in wine bar provides ample storage while keeping its contents out of view.

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Hardwood floors prevail throughout the house, in keeping with coastal cottage design.

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erations? As John explains, “We placed the master bedroom on the ground floor for accessibility, which allows for aging in place. There’s also a second laundry room on the upper level, another popular option that allows people staying upstairs to do their laundry.” Like most residential buildings in Florida, the home’s construction is all concrete, with cement blocks used for the exterior walls. The windows are storm-rated, able to withstand winds up to 75 miles per hour, which is also standard for homes with the MHK imprimatur, which surpasses the building code. 94

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The T-shaped pool is flanked by an enclosed outdoor living space on one side, and the master bedroom suite on the other.

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Both stories feature floor-to-ceiling glass walls, letting in abundant natural light while providing panoramic views of the canal and park beyond.

While mimicking the iconic wood cladding frequently used on coastal homes, the exterior walls are crafted from artisanal stucco. “Its details are designed to look like wood siding,” John says. “But stucco is much more resistant, while maintaining the character and texture of old cottages.” Attention to Details MHK is known for designing spectacular ceilings, with features such as different shapes, pop-ups and exposed beams with different kinds of treatments. “It’s the way we conceive of our spaces,” John explains, “because a spatially integrated design takes into account ceilings and how light appears in the room.” In this home, this special detail is evident in the enclosed outdoor living space, whose ceiling peaks at 15 feet and then gently slopes, so it can accommodate a large fan. An appealing hand-printed faux wood grain that is super weather resistant clads the tongue-and-groove ceiling. A fireplace was added for a touch of coziness. Matching porthole windows evoking a marine feel grace both the outdoor area and the street front. One of the most outstanding features of the house is the wine bar, designed to match the specific request of the owners. “My parents wanted a walk-in wine bar,” Erin says. “It took priority. They didn’t want a wet bar, and they didn’t want it out in the open. Tucking it into a corner off the living area allowed us to create more private space in other parts of the house.” A Dream Realized This real-life fairy tale embodies the essence of Naples living at its finest. With the help of MHK’s visionary architecture, the owners transformed their dream into a stunning modern cottage that captures the

charm of Naples, but with all the conveniences of contemporary design. Their journey from the suburbs of New York to this serene slice of paradise represents the harmonic convergence of an abiding dream, a spectacular design and an alluring city. As John of MHK sums it up, “Our clients wanted this to be their last home, with no intention of selling it.” The family is clearly here to stay. Resources: Architect: MHK Architecture 2059 Tamiami Trail East Naples, FL 34112 239.331.7092 Interior Design: Calusa Bay Interior Design 5121 Castello Drive, Suite 2 Naples, FL 34103 239.325.2800 Builder: Big Island Builders 4601 Enterprise Avenue, Unit 1 Naples, FL 34104 239.262.6867 Design + Decor

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A SPLENDID COASTAL COTTAGE IN NAPLES A simple renovation turns into a complete reimagination. Story by Meryl Siegman | Photography by Michael Kaskel

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everal years ago, the owners of a vacation home on the coast of Naples, FL, set about to renovate the cherished seaside cottage that had been in the family for several generations. Their goal was to convert it into a modern home that would serve as a gathering place for a growing family to enjoy for generations to come. The split-level, white stucco cottage was a picture-perfect example of coastal architecture, a style that is a perennial favorite in Naples. Beloved for their charming exteriors, and interiors designed for comfort and relaxation, coastal homes are characterized by their open floor plans and reflection of natural seaside elements. The ease with which they erase the lines between the indoors and outdoors is part of their enduring appeal. Even better than a traditional coastal-style home is one that has been updated. These desirable homes maximize natural light and stunning seaside views while providing all the amenities necessary for modern living.

L The home’s original staircase was renovated with a modern coastal look.

This 4,700-square-foot, five-bedroom, five-bathroom home built in the 1980s has all the desirable features of a coastal cottage: clean lines; natural materials such as wood and stone; an open, airy feel; and beautiful water views. The owners hired MKH Architects and Waterside Builders, both of Naples, for their Design + Decor

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The living room fireplace is crafted from quartzite with a mitered edge. The living room furniture in soft, neutral tones was supplied by International Design Source.

renovation project. But it didn’t take long after the work had begun for them to discover the extent of the water damage and mold that had overtaken the property over time. And so, what began as a straightforward renovation quickly became a demolition and reconstruction project that would last for several years, requiring the assistance of Naples’ L Design Studio. A Very Extensive Renovation Waterside Builders, founded in 1999, is known for building some of Southwest Florida’s finest homes. Mike Assad, its owner and president, has brought together the best talent in custom homebuilding craftmanship, award-winning architects and designers, and customers who appreciate the very best in residential luxury. Referring to the unexpected additional work that needed to be done on the house, Mike recalls, “We kept on modifying the plans as we went along, based on what we encountered.” Ultimately, Waterside Builders created what was “effectively a new house.” Mike continues, “It was a very extensive renovation, in which most of the house was stripped down to the bones. The entire foundation had to be modified, and we were required to do selective demolition in some parts of the house just to access the areas we needed to get to.” To deal with the unforeseen challenges, the owners also brought in MHK Architectures. Founded in 2009, the firm is known for its strong commitment to excellence and a desire to exceed their clients’ expectations, taking a 100

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Large baby blue subway tiles by Design Works & Ceramic Matrix add to the kitchen’s charming vintage look.

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The walk-in wine bar provides ample storage while keeping its contents out of view.

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boutique approach to all its residential projects. Its enormous portfolio of high-end homes speaks for itself. Interior Designers to the Rescue Based on the recommendation of a vendor, the cottage’s owners hired L Design Studio. With the apt tag line “Love where you live,” L Design is an award-winning interior design firm that creates extraordinary living spaces. It offers a multitude of services, including turnkey designs of entire homes. Lyndsey Davis Nicklas, the president and principal designer of L Design, explains of this project, “It was as close as you can get to a new build. After the demolition work, just a slab remained.” Fortunately, the demolition provided a great opportunity for creating a fabulous open space plan with lots of light. Even though most of the walls remained, the exterior got a facelift as well. With the help of MHK’s space planning and L Design’s input, the interior walls and layout were reimagined. The scope of work also included new millwork, roof, siding and deck, and the rehabilitation of an existing staircase. “The general structure was updated into a refreshed, modern coastal cottage—exactly the way our clients wanted it,” says Lyndsey. Julie Howlett, a senior designer at L Design, was very integral in designing new ceiling details, beams, millwork and some of the other structural design elements. “This home is where the owners come for vacation to escape from their everyday lives,” Julie recalls. Design + Decor

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“It was a coastal cottage, but we didn’t want the design to be literal—think seashells and starfish—but elegant and sophisticated. We added a little edge, using the blues and textures of a coastal home, with natural elements in the kitchen, wood floors throughout, and tons of natural light.” According to Lyndsey, the exterior living space was very important to the clients. “That’s why they travel down to Florida from up north—to entertain, lounge and enjoy the outdoors.” The wife was very involved in the design of the outdoor space, driving the design in collaboration with the entire team.

An open canopy bed in the master bedroom soars to the full height of the ceiling. The rug is from Hadinger’s Flooring.

A Symbiotic Relationship When the designers were introduced to their new clients, they immediately struck up a positive and long-lasting relationship. “The wife was determined to work with someone who was open to collaborating and working together as a team,” Lyndsey says of the full turnkey project. “She had a very strong vision of what she was looking for, and we were able to draw out what she wanted.” The Design + Decor

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owners’ goal was for the designers to create “a comfortable, casual and inviting coastal atmosphere, inspired by natural colors and an open floor plan,” Lyndsey explains. She reveals that the client’s favorite color was blue (“a very personal thing”), which helps bring the coastal exterior inside, stating, “We intentionally used neutrals throughout the house, with just a single color added for a simple look.” She goes on to say, “When you’re working hand in hand so closely with a client over the span of two years, you develop a very close relationship. It was a very enjoyable experience for all of us.” Overcoming Challenges As in most renovation projects, the team encountered challenges. First was the COVID pandemic, which broke out just as the project was starting, resulting in materials shortages, delays and travel restrictions. “It doesn’t usually take two years for a home renovation,” says Lyndsey. “Some of the furniture took 18 months to arrive.” Julie adds, “We did a lot of presentations over Zoom!” Because of the preexisting mold issues, the home had to be 100% watertight. That reDesign + Decor

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quired extra care in the selection of materials and products, because the designers wanted to protect the structure from moisture issues down the road. When Category 4 Hurricane Ian hit in 2022, the house did not suffer any damage despite four feet of water entering the garage. That speaks to the ingenuity of MHK and Waterside Builders, but of course L Design deserves credit, too, thanks to the sealed roof and windows that were specified. The clients were thrilled. It’s All in the Details When asked what makes the project truly stand out, Lyndsey is quick to point out certain architectural details, such as the quartzite fireplace with a mitered edge, and a floating vanity with the same detail in the ground108

floor powder room. A large-format tile was used for the full vanity wall. The designers chose nickel-gap siding, spanning both walls from the floor to the ceiling, and running across the ceiling, for a sophisticated coastal look. A brilliant design choice, the thoughtful detail added a modern touch to basic shiplap along with a bit of vintage appeal. In the kids’ room, the beds were built-in, with four separate closets for storage. “We incorporated twin beds for the future kids, with one trundle bed so the room can sleep up to four children,” Julie explains. “It’s a place for the kids to have fun and create lasting memories.” This coastal cottage in Naples is a testament to the enduring spirit of

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The outdoor living area extends into a fully equipped kitchen, and a comfortable sitting area in front of a fireplace and large screen TV.

family combined with the beauty of coastal living in Southwest Florida. Despite the unexpected challenges, the dedicated team of L Design Studio, Waterside Builders and MHK Architects, along with the hand-in-glove collaboration of the owners, succeeded in breathing new life into this cherished family retreat. Their commitment to preserving the past while preparing the house for the future has created a home where generations can come together and bask in the timeless charm of Naples’ coastal haven. Resources: Interior Designer: L Design Studios 6561 Taylor Road, Suite 1 Naples, FL 34109 239.260.5165 Architect: MHK Architects 2059 Tamiami Trail East Naples, FL 34112 239.331.7092 Builder: Waterside Builders Inc. 400 Gulf Shore Boulevard North, Suite 106 Naples, FL 34102 239.430.3883 Design + Decor

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Adelyn Charles Interiors designs a couple’s magnificent coastal retreat that is inspired by the architecture and style of the Carolinas. Story by Danielle Porter | Photography by Blaine Johnathan

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et along the bay side of idyllic Estero Island in Fort Myers, FL, lies “Sweet Carolina,” a coastal oasis designed for luxury living. The Michigan-based couple who purchased the property dreamed of turning the land into their new vacation destination where they could relax, entertain and, most importantly, gather with their now grown children. The thoughtfully designed home and breathtaking views set the perfect scene for a one-of-akind experience for this family. Designed by residential designer Rich Guzman of Bonita Springs, FL, and built by Lau Builders of Wells, MN, Sweet Carolina transcends typical Floridian architecture, instead drawing influence from another vacation destination cherished by the couple, the Carolinas. From the overall architecture, including the raised entrance and orthogonal structure, right down to the details of Carolina-blue painted shutters, Rich and his team successfully brought a little piece of Carolina magic to the Florida coast. Architectural Land Design, which was responsible for the landscape architecture along the property, ensured that the exterior areas were worthy of such a space. The grounds are pristine, with a diverse array of plantings curated to bring vibrant contrast to the crisp, white home and its ocean backdrop. The plantings themselves add a layer of texture and interest to the property, urging the visitor to venture further and see what else is in store. The architecture of the home itself is unique to the area. It is generally subtle, with intricate and thoughtful details that are eloquently carried throughout the home, bringing a sense of cohesiveness and calm. The elevated entry is welcoming and elegant, a grand experience that is artfully framed by subtly sculpted columns, classic clapboard siding and a modern, custom railing system at the balconies. The house has three levels. The first level consists of garage and storage space, due to the local flood plain levels. When real estate is costly and the property is as beautiful as this one, it’s difficult to commit that kind of space to non-living functions. The approach proved to be a blessDesign + Decor

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ing, however, when a hurricane devastated the island only a few weeks before completion. Though the water reached unexpected heights, only the first level needed to be redone, requiring the homeowners to shift their move-in date. The primary living spaces with the more intricate finishes and details were unharmed. More impressive is that the structure of the home was not damaged, while many residences on the island were devastated—or worse—by the effects of the hurricane. Just above the first level, the second level holds all the social spaces: a great room, the kitchen and dining room, the primary outdoor connection to the lanai and pool deck, and the master suite. The third level is home to three guest suites, one of which is a bunk room that the couple hopes will be a fun escape for future grandchildren. Each guest suite was thoughtfully designed with high-end finishes that make every guest feel as though it was created just for them. A Twist on Coastal Interior Design Upon entering the home, visitors feel as though the space, designed by Adelyn Charles Interiors designers Alex Thies and Emily Schlimm, was designed Design + Decor

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by the same hand as the house itself—a sign of true collaboration among team members. While the family wanted a design that aligned with the idea of a coastal oasis, they were not interested in the typical starfish and seashells aesthetic. They wanted the home to have a unique twist on the concept, like the Carolina-inspired exterior. The design team ultimately embraced the inherent color palette of soft blues and teals from the ocean and bay as the aesthetic driver. The palette is softly contrasted by warm coastal whites and wood floors, and further paired with sophisticated patterns and textures that together exude a calmness and cohesiveness throughout the home. This approach was thoughtful and intentional in its implementation. Designer Alex explains that the team wanted “every room to have its own personality, but not be a showcase of a different style. It’s all about this blend from the inside to the outside, and also from room to room within the space. There’s a sense of comfort in that—a calmness that makes people feel very relaxed.” In the end, the home is bright, grounded, flowing and welcoming—everything the family sought in this restful escape. A Home Made for Entertaining As the homeowners’ lifestyle is very much about entertaining and gathering with family and friends, the connection between spaces within the home was a critical aspect of the design that the team collaboratively developed. The family had one special request that very much drove the design: a two-story 114

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great room anchoring all the core social spaces and offering water views. Initially, the design team was hesitant; this type of space was not common within the architectural framework upon which the home was designed. With some work and creative thinking, however, the team developed a two-story great room connected to the open catwalk and guest suites upstairs via a grand staircase. The design is the best of both worlds—maximized connectivity on the first floor, with the perfect balance of accessibility and privacy at the guest suite level. The great room itself is expertly planned, with a large, oversized sectional and lounge seating anchored around a big-screen television. The custom millwork that houses the entertainment system extends to encompass a sleek wet bar, complete with open storage above, integral trash, an ice machine and even refrigerated beverage drawers. Immediately behind the couch and adjacent to the bar is a modern sofa table that doubles as a table for ottomans, maximizing the seating within this space for larger gatherings. And when it comes to those larger gatherings, the kitchen and dining area are a perfect extension of the great room, offering plenty of space for family and visitors to enjoy every moment together. Collectively, these spaces—the dining area, kitchen and great room—are the heart of the home, grounding the surrounding spaces with intention. The kitchen itself is truly a space made for entertainment, with plenty of counter space for laying out appetizers and arranging appliances just so—out of the way, but accessible. The aesthetic is subtle and elegant, an ideal backdrop to the experience. Quartzite counters cascade down the central island, while soft Roman shades frame the range hood and coordinated stone backsplash. The soft white cabinetry is a timeless detail, providing just enough storage for the necessities. Beyond the feature kitchen lies a catering kitchen space that is perfect for all the prep and fuss that goes into entertaining, but which can be quickly concealed behind closed doors. The lighting in the kitchen is simple and architectural, with sleek pendant fixtures above the island. This approach brings focus to the feature moment in the dining room, where a textural pendant light is suspended from a reverse soffit, clad in a white nickel gap wood and trimmed with wood stain to match the great room railings. It is the perfect example of how well the design team created cohesiveness and consistency in the home. The Great Outdoor Connection Perhaps one of the most impressive moments in the home is the walk from the interior great room or dining space to the exterior lanai. It is a seamless flow between spaces, as the exterior living room mirrors the interior great room, and the outdoor grilling and dining space mirrors the kitchen and dining area. This connection is particularly enhanced when the sliding glass doors are opened for a truly connected experience. The lanai living room is exquisite, with modern outdoor furniture anchored around a large-screen television and a fireplace that takes the chill out of cool nights. Large porcelain tiles on the Design + Decor

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ground flow straight into the dining space, enhancing the connection between the two. The eight-person dining table provides the perfect extension of the indoor dining space, while the grill is a complementary cooking option to the indoor range, stove and catering kitchen. The setup allows the family to go from stovetop appetizers, to grilled entrees, to oven-baked desserts with as little fuss as possible. The lanai space, which boasts incredible views of the bay, hides a secret. Both mosquito screens and hurricane shutters are integrated into the structure, allowing for a quick adjustment no matter the weather or season. These thoughtful details make all the difference when it comes to luxury living, as the family can close up shop quickly in case of inclement weather, or just pull down the mosquito screens on nights they need a little extra protection. Just beyond the lanai, setting the scene for the bay beyond, are an infinity pool and integral sauna, perfectly poised with the adjacent sundeck. A short walk down the stairs leads to the 116

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backyard, which is complete with a fire pit on the lawn and access to the family’s boat dock, in case the homeowners and guests want to take a sunset cruise. Luxury Living on the Bay The little luxuries here at Sweet Carolina are almost too numerous to capture, but most important is that the home offers the lifestyle the couple desired. From the bay-inspired palette to the thoughtful planning, the residence is a delight, and the homeowners finally have the coastal oasis they always dreamed of having. Resources: Residential Designer: R.G. Designs Inc. Richard Guzman Principal 28071 Vanderbilt Drive Bonita Springs, FL 34134 239.949.2929 Interior Designer: Adelyn Charles Interiors Alex Thies, Owner & Lead Designer Emily Schlimm, Associate Designer 3920 Via Del Rey Bonita Springs, FL 34134 239.734.0449

Kitchen Designer: James Harris Harbinger Woodcraft Inc. 5671 Zip Drive Fort Myers, FL 33905 239.694.1505 Landscape Architect: Architectural Land Design Christian Andrea 2780 South Horseshoe Drive Suite 5 Naples, FL 34104 239.430.1661

Builder/Contractor: Lau Builders Gary Lau Design + Decor

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Amazing Stairways


Florida Stairworks and Carpentry custom-designs magnificent staircases. Story by Hunter Powell

or Florida Stairworks and Carpentry, commitment to customers is the focus and the goal. Based in Southwest Florida, the company is owned by Douglas Adams and his son, Christopher, who take pride in their decades of expertise, talented team members and ability to make every set of stairs shine, down to the last detail. Recently, Douglas and Christopher discussed what makes Florida Stairworks the go-to firm for customers who need a brand-new stairway or an old set of stairs refurbished.

ples, where clients can see all the materials and products the firm offers. The company furnishes every kind of stairwork imaginable, including the most common woodwork and steel stairways, glass railings and cable systems. Indeed, no job is too difficult or outlandish for Florida Stairworks. “All we do is stairs, and nothing else,” says Christopher. “Stairs are what we specialize in, specifically the hard projects. When someone brings us a crazy design, we figure out how to make that dream a reality.”

Doug has been working with stairs since 1981. With more than 40 years of experience, he is a master in the art of designing, crafting and installing stairwork. In 2011 he founded Florida Stairworks and Carpentry, and his son, Christopher, joined the company in 2012. They and their team of designers, fabricators and installers offer a full-service shop for all things stair-related. “We make our customer’s dreams a reality with any staircase or stairway,” says Douglas. “We are full service, so we do everything from the design process to metalwork and woodwork to final installation, all in our own facility. We are a one-stop shop for all things stairs.”

To accomplish this, the team relies on its vast expertise in carpentry, a commitment to detail-oriented work and the use of the latest technology to aid in the design process. Christopher describes the process as “having different stages with different levels of detail, so everyone involved—including the client—can be aware of what the design is and how it interacts with the building.” Florida Stairworks works alongside architects and contractors to offer detailed concept drawings through every step of the process. It uses software that helps create photorealistic 3D renderings of their projects, so clients can have the entire picture before manufacturing and installation are done. Florida Stairworks handles it all, from design concept to installation.

Though the team does all its stairwork at its manufacturing facility in Fort Myers, it also has a showroom in the Collective in Na-

What truly characterizes Florida Stairworks, however, is its entire team of dedicated employees. The firm can call itself a “one-


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stop shop” only because it has expertise at every stage of the project, which comes together to craft beautiful staircases. “I’m most proud of the team we have here at Florida Stairworks, and the team culture that comes with that,” says Douglas. “Everyone works together and plays an equal part towards a common goal. It’s not Chris or me—it’s every person involved. Without them, we wouldn’t be here.” While the process might start with Douglas and Christopher, it finishes because of the entire team. And that team creates some of the finest stairways to be found in Florida. Resource: Florida Stairworks and Carpentry, LLC Douglas and Christopher Adams, Co-owners 7800 Drew Circle, Suite 15 Fort Myers, FL 33967 239.489.1177 The Collective in the Studio 111 10th St South Naples, FL 34102

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40 Years of Excellence with Ruben Sorhegui Tile


Catching up with the family on the firm’s 40th anniversary Story by Hunter Powell

uben and Margarita Sorhegui fled communist Cuba in 1983 to pursue freedom and a better life for their family in America. That same year, they realized their dreams when they founded Ruben Sorhegui Tile in Naples, FL. Through 40 years of business, Ruben Sorhegui Tile has become a pillar of the tile industry in Southwest Florida, thanks to the firm’s meticulous attention to detail, diverse range of products and exceptional customer service. The company’s consistency stems from its strong sense of tradition and the fact that Ruben Sorhegui Tile has remained wholly owned and operated by the Sorhegui family over the years. Recently, several members of the Sorhegui family sat down with Design + Decor to discuss the firm’s history and what makes it such a special part of Southwest Florida. His grandfather Ruben had an unrelenting drive to achieve success, according to Rey Sorhegui, the son of Ruben’s daughter, Maggie. “The first day he arrived, he wanted to work, so he started to lay tile,” says Rey. Ruben was in business for himself for three years before he opened the company’s first storefront, a 600-square-foot space. Over the years, Ruben would persevere in his mission, and eventually his sons, Robert and Tony, joined the business. As the company continued to grow, the family chose to focus on selling tile instead of installing it. “The rest was history—but far from easy,” says Rey. Sadly, Ruben passed away in August 2016, but the legacy he left has guided his family and the business. His children and grandchildren have continued to expand the company, using the lessons Ruben taught them. “We have all grown and taken our separate roles to become successful in this fast-paced industry,” says Rey. “Ruben and Margarita prioritized family in Cuba, and they instilled this into the business as well. We’ve had three generations of Sorheguis operating the business thus far, and someday I hope to have a fourth generation join this wonderful ride and continue the values that were passed down to us.” Indeed, the current family members who operate and work in the company


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continue in the pursuit of excellence. “The younger generation is learning what goes into finding the perfect tile,” says Rey. “This comes from many hours of going to trade shows and envisioning the many potential tiles in a space. Finding that perfect color or trying to predict where the markets are heading is always a fun challenge.” The family’s talent for recognizing the newest sought-after styles is immediately apparent to clients visiting the Sorhegui showroom, which is constantly being remodeled to offer products that are currently trending and will be trending a year from now. “We stay forward-thinking,” explains Rey, “and are always adapting to make sure the products we curate for our showroom are the products of the future.” The company showroom is truly unique and a marvel to see. It features Southwest Florida’s only SICIS showcase, displaying Italy’s finest glass mosaics and slabs. According to Antonio Sorhegui, Tony’s son, the showcase “is special because we have samples of all the different options across the collection. It’s important that you see these pieces in person, since pictures don’t always do a good enough job. If you’re interested in SICIS slabs or tile, our showcase is definitely worth a stop.” Though the world of tile and interior design looks much different today than it did 40 years ago, the Ruben Sorhegui Tile team has always stayed on the cutting edge of the industry. When asked how the company has evolved over the years, Rey replies, “Tiles used to be small. When the first factory learned how to make a vein on a tile, it changed the game. In today’s world, there are graphics of real stone and even very large slabs. This makes everything virtually the opposite of what it was before. Today’s products versus the older ones are like the difference between night and day.” Antonio notes the wide range of materials the company offers. “Our materials are sourced from all over the world,” he says. “The porcelains and ceramics we carry are predominantly sourced from Italy and Spain. The sources of the marble and stone we bring in are a lot more diverse, since these quarries

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are located all over the world, including Italy, Spain, Greece, Turkey and Israel, just to name a few.” Ruben Sorhegui Tile is also known for providing excellent customer service. “We take care of our customers in a professional way, which is uncommon in the industry,” says Rey. “As a result, many high-end factories around the world flock to us, asking us to display their products in our Naples showroom.” The company’s range of international products and its focus on client satisfaction in its custom work keep clients coming back again and again. Indeed, for custom jobs, the firm has maintained relationships with some manufacturers for more than 25 years. “We’re able to take any pattern and make it in a wide array of colors and materials,” Antonio explains. “There are hundreds of different materials and countless patterns, so the possibilities are endless. Before we produce anything, we create renderings that display how specific materials look with any given pattern. This allows the clients to visualize their totally unique creation before they make any decisions.” Looking back on 40 years of business, the members of the Sorhegui family are very proud of their numerous accomplishments. Antonio is most pleased about the support the family offered the community during Hurricane Ian in 2022. “We set up a program where we donate tile to those adversely affected by Ian. Those who were unfortunate enough to have their homes damaged by Ian are still welcome to choose from a selection of tile, free of charge. If you or anyone you know still needs tile replaced due to the hurricane, please contact us about getting replacement material.”

Natalie Sorhegui, Robert’s daughter, is delighted that the firm has expanded so much over the years. “I am extremely proud to have seen the exponential growth of the company through the hard work of both my father and my uncle,” says Natalie. “Over the past 40 years, they have spent countless hours and late nights dedicating their lives to continuing the legacy of their father, Ruben. In doing so, Robert and Tony have developed and maintained a tight-knit work environment that extends our family business beyond blood.” “Our grandfather Ruben instilled the importance of customer service from day one,” says Rey, “and knowing this is still our number one priority is what makes me proudest of our company.” As Ruben Sorhegui Tile continues to grow stronger and flourish, it’s a certainty that family members will only have more to be proud about in the future. Resource: Ruben Sorhegui Tile Antonio Sorhegui, Sales Director Rey Sorhegui, Sales Director Natalie Sorhegui, Director of Marketing 3876 Mercantile Avenue Naples, FL 34104 239.643.2882

Casey O’Brien

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The Essence of the Home


Annie Santulli exceeds all expectations to create designs that reflect her clients’ lives. Story by Hunter Powell

ike many interior designers, Annie Santulli knows that the secret to successful design is understanding the lifestyle, desires and sensibilities of her client. What sets Annie apart is that she and her dedicated team go above and beyond to ensure that every client feels a reflection of their own lives in the very essence of their homes.

Annie’s road to becoming an interior designer was atypical. Years ago she worked as a fashion model, at which time she met the man who would become her husband. As the two travelled around the world, Annie gained an eye for aesthetics. While in London, she found herself under the mentorship of a designer and storeowner, and at that point her design career began to blossom. “I immediately loved it!” she says. “It felt like the next step in my life. I loved the fashion industry, and design went hand in hand with that. My husband’s company would entertain guests at our home, and everyone would ask who did our home—which was designed by me! This naturally led me to interior design work.” Principal of Annie Santulli Designs, based out of Palm Beach Gardens, FL, Annie has worked in luxury home design for nearly 20 years with much success. She is meticulous about her work and extremely hands-on with every project. While many designers talk about getting to know their clients, Annie carries that notion an extra mile—and that makes all the difference. When starting a project, Annie will take her clients out to lunch and spend much time with them to build a relationship of trust. She gets them to open up to her, so they will know each other to for the work ahead. She prepares a presentation for each client, and together they discover the style, colors and look, with clients physically seeing and touching the materials or furnishings being considered for the home. For Annie, it’s all about using the clients’ sensibilities to get inspiration and create the design they want. Annie initially worked in the New York area before moving her operations to Florida, which was a big change not just in temperature, but also in the nature of her design work. “Florida is totally different from New York,” she says. “People here want to create an oasis in their home. Even if they’re living 124

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here full time, they want it to feel like a vacation. They’re also willing to try new things when they move down here, because it’s different from up north.” For Annie, one big element of Florida design is thinking about the interior and exterior as one big entity. Colors and plants that reflect the outside environment are brought inside, creating a fluid feeling in her designs. Because Annie doesn’t like nailing herself down to one look, she finds unique ways to utilize current design trends within her work. With wallpaper and accent walls in style again, Annie loves to use those textures and patterns as a transformational tool in a room. “You can take a powder room and make it look like a jewelry box,” she says. Large fixtures and convivial seating have also been key parts of her designs, with the latter “creating conversation areas and helping homeowners entertain year-round.” Over the years, she has also has picked up a number of other skills, including yacht design, which she learned while working on a project. “I’m never afraid of stepping outside of my comfort zone to pull off what my client needs and wants,” she says. Annie Santulli Design offers some of the best and most personalized luxury design in South Florida. Annie’s wealth of experience and willingness to go anywhere and do anything makes a noticeable difference in the homes she creates. When asked what her greatest success has been, she says, “I’ve won awards and been published, but I measure my success by the satisfaction of my clients. The looks on their faces when they see the final product make all the hours I put in worth it.” Resource: Annie Santulli Designs Annie Santulli, Principal 116 Playa Rienta, Suite 6210 Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418 561.630.8976

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