The Right Finishing Touches Create the “Vacation at Home” Feel

Think of what defines luxury at your favorite resort and be clever about how to deliver the same special touches at home without blowing the budget.  At the same time, knowing where not to skimp is important!

Even as the pandemic lifts, more time spent at home is a permanent thing for many remote workers and often a necessity for those who have recently invested to upgrade their homes.  Look to your favorite vacation getaway spot for ideas that will make your homeowners feel good about “staying in.”  Resort amenities designed to keep you on premises include open and elegant entertainment and dining areas, public and private spaces that provide mental escape and exude wellness, and large expanses of glass to enjoy the outdoor view and welcome natural light.

Designed to conceal the disarray of cooking, cleaning, and prepping for the more public-facing kitchen, a Butler’s Pantry brings back the nostalgia of a page-turning scene in a Jane Austen novel or the delight of Downton Abbey’s Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes holding court over the lower culinary quarters.  In this beautifully tailored kitchen, designed by Enrico DiRisio with custom cabinetry fabricated by Thorpe Concepts, the Butler’s pantry is slightly hidden behind the kitchen’s main wall. Photography: Interiors by Young Glass
A staircase can do more than just connect floors — it can be a striking architectural feature in your home. Viewrail’s floating stairs and modern railings not only make a statement, but also expand the open feel of the space. 

Well-executed space accommodates furniture placement and allows multi-functional use of the rooms.  A signature fireplace or staircase beckons the family photo. Hardware and surface selections exude craftsmanship.   With “functional beauty” in mind, there are cabinets, closets, lockers and drawer inserts to keep things in pristine order. Any and everything you may need to store at a certain temperature range is accommodated.  Technology is used to monitor and automate all the various operational systems.  Intelligent lighting design meets sophisticated style through the use of translucent crystals, sculpted glass, fluid chrome, and powerful lamps providing the right combination of ambient, accent, and task lighting to create a comfortable space ready for any activity.

Commercial designers are astute at identifying, defining and combining style themes, and the residential realm tends to follow their lead. Study and incorporate interpretations of organic modern, simple transitional, classic contemporary and nature-inspired themes.  Analyze the colors used to evoke the light and airy feel of a beach resort, or warmth and coziness at the mountain retreat.  In both commercial and residential design, the trends continue toward soothing, subtle, natural palettes, and use of natural materials.  Natural, neutral palettes are complemented by an abundance of accent colors and layers of textures that exude a connection with nature.

ET2 lights by Maxim Lighting are works of art unto themselves.

Discover and note captivating cabinet colors, lively wallpaper and terrific tile for style inspiration.

Inspired by natural woven textures, Wilsonart Interiors Thermally Fused Laminate (TFL) designs and finishes bring sophisticated style to the inside of cabinets, drawers and open storage spaces – making them as beautiful as they are functional.
Broan-NuTone® sister brand, BEST® Range Hoods feature Wi-Fi-enabled voice control and automatic infrared sensing fan adjustment to help homeowners address many internal sources of poor indoor air quality.
A brushed copper faucet and handles by Hotbath Faucets, courtesty of WATRLINE add a signature touch.
Award-winning Masonite M-Pwr Smart Doors (Photo: Business Wire) are the first residential exterior doors to integrate power, lights, a video doorbell and smart lock into the door system ready to to a home’s electrical system and wireless internet network.

To stay in business beyond the challenges of the pandemic, the hospitality industry had to prove it could provide a clean and safe environment.  Today, a growing number of Americans are rethinking the products they put in their homes, too, leading to a rise in 100% LED lighting, energy-efficient appliances, VOC-free paints, and other sustainable features.

The SilentAire Plasma Disinfection Lighting product line includes LED flush mounts, down lights, and flat panels that combines ambient LED illumination with revolutionary patent-pending, built-in “cold” plasma bipolar ionization technology to actively treat and improve indoor air quality, including killing 99.9% of airborne viruses and bacteria according to the manufacturer’s testing.
Kohler’s Japanese inspired soaking tub Stillness™ is described as “an immersive journey of the senses” made possible by layering a heavy mist and LED lighting, and permeating the water with essential oils. 

As the supply chain challenges continue, decisions made about some of the last things to be installed in the home are likely to have been specified about the same time construction permits are issued.  Only after usually a year or so later, does the design team’s anticipation of changing needs and style preferences and their level of creative interpretation go on full display.  Do your homework on the front end and never stop analyzing ever-changing wish lists.  Thoughtful inclusions can turn the house into a home, ready to serve and delight the family that will live in it. 

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