Recently Completed Project: A Residence Made for Entertainment
I-Grace recently completed work on a takeover project in Laguna Beach, California that had been ongoing for three years and completed it on an accelerated schedule in eighteen months. Situated right on the beach, the five-bedroom, ten-bath stone house has extraordinary views of the Pacific Ocean.
The architecture, by KAA Design Group, emphasizes the residence’s prime location with a significant amount of outdoor living space. The patio is actually an extension of the living room—the two spaces are divided by a retractable glass wall. Perfect for entertaining, the patio will have two carved fire pits with a cushioned seating that can accommodate up to twenty people. There’s also an outdoor bar with a recessed flat-panel television and a natural wood-fire pizza oven. The five-story house is expansive—six staircases connect the five floors. On the rare occasion that rain prevents outdoor space utilization, the Owners can enjoy a movie in their twelve-seat movie theater with a digital projection screen.
Atelier AM, the Interior Design firm on the project, accented the residence with unique finishes and details. White stone was sourced in rural France and transported to the U.S. where it was turned into custom, hand-cut flagstone found throughout the house. Hand-placed shells, stones and glass are also found in a mosaic-like motif throughout the house—from the master bedroom and bathroom ceilings to the custom “mosaic carpet” in the dining room and waterfall runnel along one of the staircases. We would like to thank Jon Adir, Al Alletto, Nick Bielins, Greg Carter, Jeannie Church, Charlie Collins, Bill Egan and Brandon Stewart for their hard work on this project.
The newest issue of Elle Decor features one of I-Grace’s projects on the cover. When Jennifer and James Cacioppo bought the 17-bedroom residence in Tuxedo Park, NY, there was considerable work to be done to make the house “livable” again. Together with Interior Designer, Ernest de la Torre and I-Grace, they worked to restore the house to its original splendor adding a modern mix of furnishings to complement the house’s original style and structure. To find out more about the project, pick up a copy of the magazine today. We would like to thank the Project Team for their hard work and dedication to this project.
Closets for Life, Style
I-Grace has partnered with Clos-ette and The Related Companies to provide custom closets for the model condominiums at The Century in Century City. The building, which rises 42-stories, opened its three model condominiums for showings in late September. Two of the condominiums were styled by the building’s architect, Robert A.M. Stern Architects and the other by LA-based firm, Marmol-Radziner. Melanie-Charlton Fascitelli of Clos-ette and Andon George, AIA of I-Grace worked together to create His and Her closets for one of these model apartments. The designs not only matched the residence’s interior design, but also accommodate the unique aspects of His and Her wardrobes. To maximize organizational efficiency, His closet has a unique vertical drawer for ties and belts to hang while Hers has a larger space for gowns and pull out shoe drawers. Clos-ette and I-Grace hope to extend their design-build services to future residents of the building. We would like to congratulate Andon George and Cliff Williamson for their time and dedication to this project.
A Greener Way to Cool
A Geothermal Air Conditioning System was installed in this residence. The system uses the earth’s natural cooling properties to diffuse heat produced by the air conditioner. Unlike an air-source heat pump, which transfers heat to or from the outside air, a ground source heat pump exchanges heat with the ground in a vertical closed loop. This is much more energy-efficient as underground temperatures are more stable than air temperatures through the year.
A unique feature of the system that I-Grace installed is that the Geothermal unit is connected to the home’s security system and shuts down after the exterior doors have been open for 10 minutes to avoid unnecessary energy consumption.
I-Grace recently finished work on a two bedroom penthouse on the Upper East Side. The residence, which is a Pied-á-Terre for the principal of an international architecture firm, boasts views of Central Park and the Whitney Museum from its 2,000 square foot, wrap-around terrace. The terrace floors and matching planters are made of the highly durable and environmentally-friendly Brazilian Ipê hardwood. The terrace is ideal for entertaining—a built-in grill is situated in one corner and planters line the outside of the terrace, providing privacy and shade for the owners and their guests.
The residence is equally enjoyable indoors. The entrance feeds into an octagonal gallery with custom-inlaid onyx floors. The living room and kitchen both have brand-new hardwood floors which were hand-scraped by artisans to give the floors a rustic and worn texture. The master bath of this classically-styled penthouse is outfitted in pink marble and the walls are decoratively painted to give the illusion of marble-cladding. In the living room, I-Grace installed a brand-new coffered plaster ceiling and custom millwork throughout the main living spaces. The gut renovation was completed on an accelerated schedule in roughly seven months. Congratulations to Brad Butler, Project Executive, Ben Nathan, Project Manager, and John Menzie and David Manuel, Site Superintendents, for their hard work on this project.
Building A “Bridge” in Tuxedo Park
Tuxedo Park, a gated village 40 miles outside of Manhattan, was established in the late 19th century as a luxury resort. Many of the residences were designed by influential architectural firms of the Gilded Age including Delano & Aldrich, Carrere & Hastings, and McKim Mead & White. The village became famous for its high-profile residents, beautiful homes, and grand events. (In fact, the evening dress for men now popularly known as the “tuxedo” takes its name from Tuxedo Park, where it was said to have been worn for the first time in the United States, at the annual Autumn Ball of the Tuxedo Club). In recent years, the village has witnessed a revival; aging homes once abandoned, have been restored, bringing the secluded village back to its original splendor as a quiet refuge close to Manhattan.
I-Grace has worked on several projects in Tuxedo Park, including the ongoing restoration of a carriage house for which we are now constructing a complex driveway. But this is no ordinary driveway. The driveway is, in fact, a “bridge” made of layers of engineered fill and geo-grid fabric, which acts as a soil stabilizer, spanning a ravine over two stories deep. Carved into 200 cubic yards of rock, the soil “bridge” is contained by two tiers of Rosetta Hardscape, which is an engineered, interlocking, architectural grade pre-cast concrete retaining wall system. This unique designable approach combines the subtlety of naturally weathered stone with the security of interconnected concrete blocks that weigh an average of 220 pounds per square foot of face. This innovative system allows the constructed walls to reach heights never before seen without structural reinforcement. The lower wall is now complete and the upper wall remains under construction. Building this driveway required a year of extensive engineering and logistics planning by Project Executive Tim Hanes and the entire I-Grace Team.
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