Known for its sleek, high-performance cars, prestigious automobile brand Bentley Motors moves into the fast lane with its first residential complex: Bentley Residences. Set to rise from the shores of Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, in 2026, the 70-story building will be the tallest residential tower on the U.S. coastline.
Bentley worked closely with Sieger Suarez Architects and Dezer Development to shape the exquisitely designed building. Its exterior will sparkle with diamond-shaped glass panels that refract light, and those same diamond motifs (a Bentley signature) are to be repeated throughout. Apartments will come with Italian-made Bentley Home furniture pieces along with a private balcony pool, sauna and outdoor shower. “It’s being built with luxury car owners in mind, and our patented drive-in elevator allows owners to park their car, on display, right outside their home—the ultimate statement of exclusivity,” says Gil Dezer of Dezer Development.
Amenities will include a cinema, whiskey bar and cigar lounge, a wellness center and spa, and an on-site private restaurant.
A culmination of seven years exploring the globe, residential designer Peter Oleck’s new showroom, Pietra Casa, in Coconut Grove, Florida, flaunts an exquisite collection of home accessories, materials, lighting and architectural elements that can’t be found anywhere else.
Why did you decide to open Pietra Casa? After years designing projects like the Mondrian South Beach Hotel and homes from Golden Beach to Harbor Island, I wanted to create a space that offers specialty goods for luxury homes, hotels and restaurants. Teaming up with Turkish designer Furkan Tan, we’re creating new bespoke pieces and a furniture line called Carbon Studio. In this world of fast-paced mass-production, we want to bring back a sense artisanal manufacturing and products that are driven by authenticity and quality.
What sets your shop apart? Our goal is to showcase objects from all over the world that aren’t widely represented in North America: European furnishings, volcanic light fixtures from Mexico, Italian hand-stitched leather trays, mouth-blown German glass, Turkish linens and more.
What’s next for you? Pietra Casa offers an immense array of products, and it’s impossible to feature everything. So, we expect to open new locations in Los Angeles, New York and Istanbul that continue creating this true sense of luxury living.
“When you’re doing a project, the house tells you what to do,” Rollins says. In this case, the townhome’s classic lines, well-proportioned rooms and easy flow called for “barefoot elegance,” she adds. “There’s a formality to it, but it’s a relaxed formality.” Tom offered a particularly descriptive take: “I suggested the style be somewhere between Peter O’Toole and Ernest Hemingway—a British Colonial feel,” he says. So, Rollins conceptualized a design that blends color with subtle patterns for a calm and sophisticated style.
The couple first got to work honing the highly polished marble floors, replacing pocket doors with a more classic design and relocating the pillars that dominated the dining room to just outside the main entrance for a grander welcome. The modest kitchen was upgraded with a pantry and hidden storage to maximize every inch. “Some people come with baggage; I come with china, silver, crystal and linen,” Rollins quips. Overflow mementos are displayed in the dining room’s massive antique breakfront, a sentimental item from her previous Atlanta home. “I need to have a little bit of my past with me—a few pieces I know,” the interior designer says. “It’s a sense of comfort.”
More work occurred in the television room, an angled space outfitted with built-ins. “We cut the millwork and moved it back, changing the whole look of the room to be half-octagonal,” Tom explains. They installed a cozy banquette, repurposed their former dining table into a coffee table and painted the room a moody shade of navy. “I always say: Paint the smallest room in your house the darkest color you can stand,” Rollins shares. “It visually expands the space.”
Throughout the home, gracious windows welcome radiant outdoor hues and natural light. To counter the vibrancy, Rollins embraced calm interior tones of chocolate brown, white and pale blue, with touches of black, beige and coral. “That restful palette gave me the chance to let pieces with a lot of heft pop,” she says. Inspired by the enormous mahogany front doors, for instance, the interior designer selected furnishings of the same wood, including the living area’s modern coffee table and antique English consoles. Her Queen Anne-style mirrors and lacquered Ming-style tables, meanwhile, play with the contemporary- leaning seating Tom selected. “This was the perfect way to take antique pieces and make them fit with a more modern feel,” Rollins says. The deep white skirted sofa and upholstered slipper chairs mirror guests at a dinner party—“You need a mix of skirt and legs,” she muses—while the chairs’ block print and a sisal rug nod to a Bahamian feel.
The duo settled on subdued off-white walls for the main bedroom upstairs, home to a grass- cloth bed with a nailhead detail and vintage night tables. “She’s gotten me to move off of the monotones to a more colorful palette, and I think I’ve gotten her to somewhere a little more centered,” Tom says, making the interior designer laugh. “It’s a good balance.”
Outside, Rollins added a new portico to the front exterior, installed a fountain across from the front door and planted new greenery, including blooming white tropical flowers, star jasmine vines and green island ficus hedges. “When you live in Florida, your exterior is as important as your interior,” she says. The rear courtyard offers even more space to entertain, including oversize settees the interior designer arranged around the pool and a breezy cabana for alfresco dining.
Simultaneously traditional and easygoing, the townhome is an amalgamation of the couple. It’s become a sentimental spot as well: In the courtyard during their New Year’s Eve party, Tom surprised Rollins with a marriage proposal. “I think the test of a house is that the more you’re in it, the more you like it—and we both feel that,” she says. “It’s home for us now.”
For nearly 30 years, designer Megan Winters and her family gathered at her parents’ seasonal home in Bonita Springs, Florida, for holidays and other memorable occasions. “Everyone in the family loved the house,” she recalls. “It was such a bright, beautiful setup, and the way my mom decorated it was spectacular. It was impossible to not be happy in this house.”
As time passed, however, the residence became too difficult for Winters’ parents to maintain, and so they downsized to a nearby condominium. That’s when the house keys passed to their oldest daughter, who endearingly followed in her mother’s footsteps to make the dwelling a joyful site for wonderful memories. “I wanted it to be more casual but still very sophisticated and comfortable,” Winters says. “There’s good energy here.”
When the designer and her husband acquired the 1990s residence, it had remained largely untouched since her parents had purchased it nearly three decades ago. She saw opportunities to reinvigorate its character, reconfigure spaces and present a chic twist on its buoyant spirit. Teaming up with general contractor Drew Hemmer, Winters repainted the pink façade a crisp white and swapped out the green shutters for a sky blue Bahama style that exudes instant island charm. Hemmer replaced all the windows with hurricane-impact glass and squared off the half-round windows above the doors for a more contemporary look.
Inside, “Megan wanted to expand the kitchen and family room out through the lanai, which was an extensive part of the project,” the general contractor says. “So it made this large great room they never had before and gave it a more modern, open feel.” To create the space, he blew out the wall separating the family room from the screened-in lanai, enclosing the expanded area with windows that bring in views of the surrounding water and golf course. “It made the whole house brighter,” Winters says.
The interior renovation connects the family area to the now-open kitchen, which doubled in size. There, Winters painted the walls a sentimental bright blue. “It was the exact color my mother had when it was her residence,” she says, “and it makes me feel so happy.” This hue served as a jumping-off point for the rest of the house: Embracing a Floridian quality, the designer touched nearly every room with a vibrant shade of blue, including the kitchen’s cabinetry and lighting pendants as well as the patterned rugs and artwork in the more neutral- toned sitting and dining areas.
New European white oak flooring, jute rugs and wicker furnishings—including the kitchen’s counter stools—are a warm contrast to the clean- lined pieces Winters incorporated, such as the sitting area’s metal-armed lounge chairs and the dining area’s rectangular high-gloss table. And in another mix-and-match move, just like her mother did before her, the designer audaciously blends patterns in each space. “It’s the best way to bring a room together with interest,” she says. “Pattern adds the extra element that makes all designs personal.” Dining chairs in a painterly fabric rest on a checkerboard rug, while a swirling blue zebra print defines a hallway alcove. In a guest bedroom, a modern toile repeats on the wallcovering, bedding and armchairs.
Still, Winters smartly offers a break from the bold prints and bright blues with more serene moments. Her classic use of black and white dominates the dining and sitting areas, welcoming guests from the foyer and leading the eye toward the pool. “Every color can complement this pairing—it’s the best ‘neutral’ I know,” she observes. The color combo also shows up in the main bathroom’s soaking tub, marble flooring and leopard-print wallpaper. And it pairs with navy in the main bedroom, a striped haven decorated with grayscale photos of horses, a passion for the designer, who is also an equestrian.
Living on in the hands of the next generation, the residence has transformed entirely without losing its legacy as a cherished memory box. “In some respects, the home is not much different from what it was,” Hemmer says, “and yet it’s still night and day.” Perhaps the greatest testament of its respectful refresh came from Winters’ parents, who visit every Sunday for dinner. “My father told me I brought this beautiful old home back to life,” the designer says. “This home is the lighthearted, casual and happy version of me.”
When a couple decided their Palm Beach vacation home needed a modest refresh, they asked their longtime interior designer, Kelly Anthony, to help select new options for the walls and flooring. But comparing paint swatches quickly turned into something much more. “We studied the house for a bit, and I said, ‘I’ve got good news, and I’ve got bad news,’” Anthony told her clients. “‘The good news is I’m not going to change one thing. The bad news is I’m going to change everything.”
Nearly a decade earlier, Anthony had designed the dwelling’s previous iteration, which featured a classic Palm Beach style. This time, however, she envisioned a clean, modern take on the island’s aesthetic, with an open, light-filled plan. Achieving this would require a full gut renovation, so she partnered with general contractor Jason Willoughby as well as Matthew Quinn of Design Galleria Kitchen and Bath Studio to help transform the structure inside and outside.
First on the agenda was overhauling the layout of the main floor. “It had a real Mediterranean vibe—so a lot of confined spaces and darker rooms,” Willoughby recalls. “Everything was kind of sectioned off.” The walls dividing the kitchen, dining area, living room and loggia all came down, creating a long, beautifully flowing space leading to the back courtyard. The general contractor installed steel-framed windows and doors along the back wall to bring in more natural light as well as views of the plunge pool and elegant grounds in the modest courtyard by landscape architect Dustin M. Mizell. “We made a really small space feel more gracious,” says Mizell, who added plantings such as Senegal date palm, yellow tabebuia and jasmine vines. Two dining areas offer ample space for entertaining, and the wine room now functions as a bar thanks to a new pass-through window into the living area. “Once we connected all the spaces and opened up the back of the house, it took on a completely different personality,” Anthony says.
Quinn, meanwhile, worked his magic in the kitchen. To create a sleek space that complements the rest of the architecture, he cleverly hid appliances and gadgets behind retractable doors and deep drawers. Monochromatic materials such as rift-cut oak cabinets, Cristallo quartzite and deep chocolate-hued wood floors set a sophisticated tone. “It was really about creating a space where somebody could cook a meal if they wanted to, but mostly it was a beautiful space,” Quinn says.
Outside, Anthony and Willoughby intended to smooth the exterior’s textured stucco façade and replace the barrel tile roof with a charcoal flat one. But the town’s architectural commission denied the plans, because several nearby residences were being built in a similar transitional style. Instead, they found other ways to modernize the old world style exterior, including introducing a glass- and-steel front door, a motor court and a ribbon driveway. In the end, “we feel the direction the board made us go in actually provided for more of a unique home,” Willoughby reflects. “We kept some of the traditional elements, which give it that real Palm Beach vibe. Then when you walk inside, it wows you even more.”
Simply opening the front door of the Mediterranean-style façade unveils a dramatic surprise: a modern hallway enveloped in crisp white walls and lined with veined marble flooring. Throughout the interior, Anthony pursued a contemporary color palette dominated by black, white and gray, with neutral pops of ivory. As a nod to the wife, who designs clothes, she channeled fashion influence in each space, incorporating Chanel-inspired bouclé, art with a sartorial spin and jewelry-like light fixtures. “She likes things to be feminine, elegant,” the interior designer says of the wife, “but she also likes a bit of glitter and glam.”
Sculptural and curvy furnishings inject an enticing level of comfort, countering some of the dwelling’s more commanding features—like the dark gray linen wing chairs that play off the living area’s striking black marble fireplace, the bar room’s low-slung beige sectional that balances graphic wall art and the rounded velvet sofa that hugs the marble breakfast table. But the coziest space, rightfully so, is the primary bedroom. “We wanted to make the room feel like it was enveloped in fabric,” Anthony says. “The space feels very clean, open and bright.” With the backdrop of a gray marble fireplace, she warmed the room even more with nubby seating, a plush rug and a channel-set vinyl headboard wall, all in neutral shades.
By the end of the renovation, Anthony was proved correct: The team had indeed changed not one thing but rather everything. And that, it turns out, includes the desires of the residents. “They trusted us to give them what they didn’t even know they wanted,” she says.
Hearing interior designer Jackie Armour tell the story about the diamond-in-the-rough home that caught her eye in Tequesta sounds like the beginning of a Nancy Drew novel. “I had always been intrigued by the house, because it sits back from the road,” she says. “The vegetation was very overgrown, and you really couldn’t get a good view of the property.” Living around the corner, Armour often passed the site—nearly an acre—during evening strolls around her neighborhood.
When the abode hit the market, a realtor friend invited her for a tour. “Once I walked through, I thought, ‘Oh God, this has so much potential,’” the interior designer remembers. Although the 1989 split-level required some updates, she saw good bones and myriad perks, including high ceilings and rows of sliding glass doors opening to an umbrageous pool deck. “I felt really good in the house, like I was home,” Armour says. Soon enough, she was home: She and her husband, Alan, sold their family residence of 34 years, and the empty nesters embraced the challenge of starting over. “I was very empowered by some of my clients in their mid-60s and 70s who were building new homes and taking on big projects,” the interior designer says, “and I felt like I could do this, too.”
Although the house the couple had built in 1987 sits down the street from their new address, the two structures couldn’t be more different. Their previous residence had an old Florida aesthetic with a wraparound porch, compartmentalized layout and traditional design with estate antiques. The new home, meanwhile, presents a modern- coastal feel with shiplap siding and a tin roof. So the couple decided to welcome the change and make a departure from their previous style. “I knew this house could be really great for entertaining,” Armour says. “Spaces were large and open to each other, and it had great potential for a relaxed, cool, party beach house.”
The work began outside, where she tackled the rampant overgrowth and revitalized specimen trees, including a weeping yaupon holly. The process yielded a surprising discovery: a buried pond once inhabited by koi fish. Now fully restored, the pond waterfall serves as a backdrop for cocktail parties and alfresco dinners.
Next, the interior designer drenched the formerly yellow exterior in bright white, complemented with blue shutters. Inside, she installed French oak flooring and treated ceilings with nickel joint for a modern touch. Armour originally envisioned a white backdrop for the interiors. However, “I never met a pattern or a color I didn’t love,” she admits. “I had a vision for a palette that was going to be light and airy, and I wanted it to feel more tropical.” That’s when the interior designer came across a citron botanical-print fabric that would shape the design of the entire residence. “I always like to start with textiles,” she explains. “That was my jumping-off point for the whole interior of the house.” Armour used the material for draperies in the living, dining and sitting areas, all within view of each other from the entry. “Seeing that fabric repeated everywhere brings the spaces together and gives you a really nice, cohesive feeling when you walk in,” she explains.
Similarly, “I didn’t want a standard white kitchen,” the interior designer notes, opting instead for blue cabinetry. To define the space— which opens to the dining, living and sitting areas—she applied a blue tribal-style wallpaper on two walls, repeating the pattern in the nearby stairwell for more cohesion.
The staircase leads to the main bedroom, where once again, Armour embraced pattern on the walls—this time columns of foliage in tranquil pinks, greens and whites. A pagoda-style bed and retro-looking ceiling fan inject midcentury modern sensibility, while the room’s pink draperies frame window views of tall oaks. “I feel like I’m in a treehouse,” she muses. Outside, the interior designer balanced the magnitude of white space on the L-shaped loggia with durable seating fabrics blocked in aquas and mustard yellows. “If I didn’t know this was a home, I might think this is a resort area,” she says. “It’s very island-like but very luxurious.”
Now, having undergone a redesign of her own—and all the emotions that come with it— Armour says the experience was a reminder of the gratitude she holds for clients having confidence in her capabilities. “It’s a big leap of faith,” she reflects. “I’m really thankful they’ve put a lot of trust in myself and my team.”
Delray Beach artist Junior Sandler splashes canvases with vibrant color and captures the energy of South Florida’s tropical lifestyle. Along with showcasing her work at galleries in Palm Beach and beyond, Sandler recently collaborated on her first design project with interior designer Lauren Haskell. Luxe catches up with Sandler. shoplohome.com
How did you get your start? I was exposed to art early on and experimented with many mediums, such as charcoal, ceramics and oil. Formal training is wonderful for technique, but the opportunity to explore with an easel, still life or live models allowed me to trust my vision and expression. I started donating works to my favorite charities some years ago. The feedback was so positive that it pushed me to take a professional view of my production.
What do you want your works to evoke? My designs are based in natural patterns, and that feeling of lightness and tranquility is what I hope shines through. I aim for a contemporary take on traditional, so there is a simplicity in the images yet they’re still provocative. Color is a must.
Take us behind the scenes of your latest collaboration with Lauren Haskell. We followed one another on Instagram, and she reached out saying she saw something special in my work. Lauren hand-selected the paintings, which became beautiful fabrics, wallpapers, pillows and pottery, including ginger jars. I thought of myself as a painter, but she has encouraged me to see myself as a designer as well.
A century ago, Elizabeth Lauder Kellum, niece of industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, and her fishing-guide husband, Med Kellum, built a magnificent estate off McGregor Boulevard in Fort Myers. Set on 457 acres along what’s now known as Whiskey Creek, the property comprised a handsome mansion, a boathouse, a staff home, stables and more—everything a 1920s high-society couple would need to winter in Southwest Florida. America was in the early days of Prohibition, but that hardly mattered: The Kellums distilled whiskey in a log cabin on the property and transported some of it off the estate by boat, thus giving the creek its name. Their few years at Wyomee Hatchee Farms—a name derived from the native Seminoles’ words for “whiskey” and “river”—were marked, too, by visits from such innovators as Thomas Edison (who, rumor has it, had a hand in designing the home) and Henry Ford.
Over the next decades, the estate was divvied up into smaller parcels and sold, but the main residence remained, almost just as it was built, until its current owners set foot on the property. “It was on and off the market multiple times, and for about four years, we made offers on it,” the wife recalls. “My biggest concern was that someone would buy it and just tear it down.” But the couple prevailed and undertook the work of restoring the house to its former aesthetic glory while updating it for life in the 21st century.
Interior designer Renée Gaddis led the effort—and she had a lot of beautiful elements to work with: original windows and heart-of-pine floors, detailed molding and millwork, Shaker-style doors with brass hardware, and push-button electrical switches with pearl inlays. From the beginning, Gaddis knew how her plans would play out. “I think a lot of people couldn’t see through the home’s age and wear; it might have looked daunting and overwhelming,” she says. “But the house itself inspired me. It led me to the design very easily, and I saw clearly what we had to do, which was take the house back to its original grandeur.”
Gaddis began by preserving the structure’s layout, with help from general contractor Joe Gatewood. “The home was an absolute time capsule when we first saw it,” he recalls. They removed a living area fireplace that blocked views of the water from the main entrance; its second- story counterpart came out, too, leaving additional space for the main bathroom (and even with these changes, the house still retains six original fireplaces). Gaddis had the floors refinished and integrated the century-old molding into new baseboards. Rusted-out door hardware was replaced with replicas—“The mechanisms were so bad, we kept getting locked in rooms,” the designer says. And the old windows and exterior doors— which, Gatewood points out, endured a century of storms—had to go too in favor of hurricane- code-compliant versions.
In this updated shell, Gaddis layered in luxurious fixtures and finishes, sumptuously upholstered furnishings and beautifully crafted art pieces. In the living area, she staged “a perfect combination of modern interiors in a historic home,” the wife says. There, glam chandeliers pair with a sleek white marble coffee table and clean-lined sofas. The family room, too, sets a rich tone with detailed wall paneling and built- ins painted gray and two plush velvet sectionals. Striking contemporary fixtures make statements throughout the residence, overseeing more classical furnishings in a fabulous presentation of old meets new.
As the design came together, the house had some secrets to reveal. The team found an old potbelly stove Gaddis transformed into a wood-burning pizza oven, a decision that led her to reimagine the kitchen as a 1920s French bistro with open glass shelves and brass fixtures. More demo uncovered a safe hidden in a wall in the owners’ bedroom. Sadly, it didn’t contain any Carnegie cash.
But the home does contain more than a modicum of priceless history, which is now preserved for a long time to come. “We all felt like this was the project of a lifetime,” Gatewood says. The new owners agree. “This isn’t just a home for our family,” the wife says. “It’s a piece of Fort Myers history that will outlast us all.”
The 1970s Boynton Beach residence Kit and Nancy Tatum intended to renovate as their vacation house started out humbly enough. It had original tile floors, a textured ceiling and carpeting in the main bathroom. “It was the epitome of a South Florida builder-grade home,” recalls their designer, Courtney Davis. “And it was begging to be updated.”
The property is nestled in a golf course community, so it didn’t seem right to pursue a typical coastal look, Davis explains. “We didn’t want it to feel like a beach house, but we did want it to feel like a Florida home,” she says. The abode also needed to reflect the Tatums’ new stage of life, a departure from their larger, more traditional permanent residence in New Hampshire. “Courtney and I set out to create a comfortable space that is both classic and beautiful,” Nancy says. They envisioned an Old Florida-style garden house that feels fresh and welcoming, with wow factors throughout.
They began with the structure’s bones. General contractor John Prendergast took the home down to the studs and, while keeping the layout roughly the same, added a bathroom, reworked doorways and openings, leveled floors and removed and lined walls. “We took it all the way down and then had to put it back together again so we could add the layers of design we wanted,” Davis says. “We were giving the house a soul where there really hadn’t been one before.”
Moldings and trim now infuse each space with character, as do ceiling treatments, including cypress over the living area. “We added intention to the architectural design through these somewhat small but very important changes,” Davis says. New built-ins also add personality: Where a wall once stood, double-sided cabinets face the kitchen on one side and, on the other, serve as bookcases backed with a blue grass-cloth wallcovering for the living area. Another set of cabinetry defines the entry and conceals a bar lined with a patterned antique tile. “It’s this little special jewel box of a spot, and it’s one of the first things you see when you walk in the door,” Davis says. “It sets the tone for the house.”
The showpiece is in the back of the residence: the dining room, lined on its walls and ceiling with an unexpected powder blue lattice. This enchanting space is also the home’s greatest surprise transformation, as it was formerly a step- down, screened porch. “It was an important part of the house that we had to reclaim,” Davis notes. Blurring the line between inside and outside, the room features end chairs and a console table with botanical fabrics to enhance the garden feel. Oversize sheer Roman shades decorate the two sets of sliding doors that open completely to the exterior, highlighting the backyard pond, the greenery and the swan that visits often. “You can’t decide: Are you in an inside space or an outside space?” Davis muses. “Either way, it’s beautiful— and you’d like to sit down.”
The designer created multiple seating areas throughout the residence, including a morning room next to the kitchen furnished with a beaded chandelier, a green sofa and a pair of caned chairs. To capture a subtle sense of place, she incorporated nods to Florida in unexpected ways, like the living area’s blue rattan console table, lampshades with hand-painted palm fronds and Talavera pottery that lines the bookcases.
The color scheme was kept within a narrow scope of blues and greens, creating a smooth flow. “Because of the simple color palette, we had to be intentional with making little statements throughout each space so the house didn’t fall flat,” Davis explains, “so we used different patterns and played with scale.” She outfitted bedrooms with airy wallpapers, accented the living area’s traditional blue floral-printed chairs with pillows in modern punches of yellow and bright teal and played with surfaces, including painting the ceiling of the main bathroom a high- gloss opal lacquer.
As the project’s finishing touch, Nancy selected the artwork for the residence. “I have a new passion of art collecting since this experience,” she says. It’s this kind of inspiring mentality Davis hoped to cultivate for the Tatums in their inviting vacation home. “They wanted it to be a place that people could drop by—and, quite honestly, people do,” she says.
Imagine a lake house in Wisconsin. Maybe you’ve conjured up a rustic farmhouse—something that would make a charming setting for a romance novel or, depending on how your mind works, a thriller. Either way, chances are a sleek specimen of California modernism wasn’t the first thing that came to mind.
But take a boat trip along the edges of Lake Mendota and you’ll spot just that. The pared-back residence, distinguished by its mostly limestone-and-glass façade, evokes the essence of California cool—thanks to its architects, Ron Radziner and Leo Marmol, as well as the rest of their team—Stephanie Hobbs, Matt Jackson and Troy Newell.
The homeowners’ previous dwelling, located just down the road, leaned much more traditional. But for their new lakeside abode, on a unique site that sloped gently down to the water, they wanted something special. “We were interested in very simple forms, sort of hovering above this amazing setting,” says Radziner, who worked with landscape architect Lindsay Buck to ensure the environment was cohesive with the structure. “Something where you would come into the home and move through these sculptural forms and then take in beautiful vistas to the lake. We saw the landscape as an opportunity to really create this sort of native prairie with wildflowers and grasses, then slowly work our way down to the house where it would become more open and architectural.”
The streamlined rectilinear design of the residence—built by general contractor Joe Sagona and project manager Aaron Combs—creates a minimalist vibe, as does the restrained palette of limestone and stained-gray oak. But a two-story white circular staircase set against a glass backdrop provides a dramatic visual counter to the straight lines. It’s an unexpected but welcome architectural touch that sets the tone for the interiors created by designers Aimee Wertepny and Jennifer Kranitz. The task, the pair explains, was to create spaces that merge the home’s minimalism with the wife’s taste for polish and sophistication. “There’s a tension between glamorous and organic,” Wertepny says. “The wife really resonates with things that are a bit shiny, reflective and pretty.”
Working with the natural tones of the dwelling’s contextual shell, the designers opted for furnishings in black and white and higher-contrast decor, including a polished hood and full-height hardware on the refrigerators in the kitchen. “There are a lot of moments of reflective elements that felt a bit more glamorous for the wife,” Kranitz says. “We wanted both of these points of view to be really married and feel super seamless and intentional.” Since the soaring windows brought hues of nature into the home, the designers chose not to introduce more color. “We have a lot of green and blue, so there’s a really colorful backdrop,” Kranitz notes. “It made sense to let it be a little easier on the eyes so that we could let some of those other elements shine.”
Mixing finishes—antique brass, polished nickel, and matte black and bronze—throughout the space helped add textural intrigue, as did using materials in unique ways. In the dining room, the custom 17-foot table features Lucite-and-steel legs and the surrounding sculptural dining chairs are embellished with zippers. Upstairs in the main bedroom, an alpaca rug adorns the wall behind the bed, serving as a headboard of sorts. “We’re known for that element of surprise—and we’re always looking for opportunities to put a rug on a wall!” Wertepny laughs. “Could we have had an upholstered king-sized headboard there? Sure, but this is so much more dramatic and customized and really spoke to what the client was looking for—very soft, feminine and glamorous without having a specific sparkle to it.”
To add further coziness to the home, the designers introduced custom millwork and built-ins throughout. Most notable is the display behind the bar for the owners’ extensive tequila collection that also incorporates a series of protruding beams with crystalline pendant lights. “We inherited beautiful bones and a gorgeous set of floor plans,” says Wertepny. “But that was our moment to interject with detailing—something that was very simple and quiet and adds a little nod to the bling.”
The chance to turn tradition on its head made the project all the more fun for the designers. “When people think of a lake house it’s typically not this really sharp, tasteful modern glass box,” Kranitz says. “I’m just always struck by how cool it was that we were able to do this modern spin on a lake home—it feels so good.”