The realistic-looking floral carpet covers the stairs right off the entry. The pattern “Eden Queen” was inspired by the Dutch Masters of the Golden Age.
Writer: Beth Eslinger
Photographer: Duane Tinkey
Though it’s only about 20 minutes from downtown, this modern new build feels like it’s a world away.
Step outside from one of the five French doors to the sleek pool and sunken firepit — all surrounded by marble-look tile — and be transported to a secluded villa or hotel in the Mediterranean. Walk inside, and the open plan, high ceilings and restrained white-and-black color palette feel more like Southern California than a home in the heart of the Midwest. And sink into the sculptural soaking tub in the 20-by-20-foot primary suite and imagine you’ve jetted away to a luxurious spa.
Custom-built by Renda Building Co., with interior design by Projects Contemporary Furniture, the modern ranch just south of the metro maximizes indoor-outdoor living with plenty of amenities, including a pool house with a full kitchen for entertaining and its own basement for extra storage; a 48-inch Miele gas range top in the kitchen; a double shower complete with a bench seat in the primary bath; and a separate walk-in pantry off the kitchen.
The Italian wood-look tile contrasts with the checkerboard tile and “is designed to be both beautiful and practical because it’s super durable,” said lead designer Gracie Muller of Projects Contemporary Furniture. French doors open to expansive outdoor spaces.
The primary living areas are open and carry the white-and-black palette throughout. Here, the great room flows into the dining area, angled bar and kitchen.
The homeowners appreciate the panoramic views of the rural setting and the building’s “crisp white envelope,” said Gracie Muller, lead designer with Projects. She noted the windows are bare to keep the views wide open.
To create the new home, Muller and fellow designers Hanna Heiland and Gracie Steggar kept to a timeless palette of black and white, both inside and out.
The team mixed traditional architectural elements such as ornate mirrors, arched windows, ceiling medallions, chunky fireplace moldings and black-and-white tile with contemporary furnishings such as the sprawling Italian black sectional in the living room. Gold accents appear throughout in a silk hand-knotted rug, the edges of a hand-blown vase and an aged-looking mirror.
For additional sparkle and brightness, the design trio also focused on signature lighting. “We wanted each space to have a memorable focal point and for each chandelier to be appreciated as you encountered them room by room,” Muller said. “We studied the scale a great deal to get it right.”
White Poliform frameless kitchen cabinets in white lacquer inspired the wall color throughout the main living areas. The marble covering the island and attached seating area features a special stain-resistant finish, making it easier to maintain. Built-ins include two regular ovens, a steam oven, wine fridge and freezer. The massive island is topped by a 10-foot-long range hood decked in LED lighting.
The primary bath has extra-long dual vanities complete with drawer storage. Large-scale porcelain tile covers the floor, tub wall and shower area.
The entire backyard is party central. To create a seamless design, porcelain pavers were used around the fire pit, pool and pool house beyond. The sunken gas fire pit seats up to 28, and its recessed design shelters guests from windy weather. The 20-by-40-foot heated pool reflects the clouds during the day and sunset. Even more amenities are tucked into the pool house, including a full-size Miele refrigerator, dishwasher and icemaker. And just for fun, a pod-style daybed (to the right of the pool) has an integrated sunshade to maximize relaxation.