Glamorous for the Holidays

How many designers do you know who are handed a house to totally renovate and redecorate?

Aguie Medrano of the Home Accessory Company was given that opportunity in 2009 by a family that frequently travels abroad. The four-bedroom house they bought in Deerfield had good lines, but Aguie was tasked with improving its appearance.
“We started the project with the exterior of the home,” he says. “The front doors were replaced to create a grander entrance. Natural stone wainscoting was added to the house to reflect the surroundings of the property.”

The entry impresses with a soaring metallic faux-finished barrel ceiling. The walls are painted a dark sand color. Two faux zebra hide chairs flank the Italian marble-top console table and stunning wood-framed mirror. The formal dining room to the left features a carved wooden pedestal table by Habersham. The carved Italian sideboard is accented by what Medrano calls “funky lamps.” The chairs, also hand carved, are upholstered in eyelash chenille on the seating; the backs are done in embroidered silk. “I like mixing traditional styles with funky accessories,” he says. “It brings personality to a room.” To the right of the entry is the office, although the family uses it as a reading room. “We replaced the 6-foot French doors with a 9-foot pair. This really opened up the room,” he says.

He chose a more masculine wall color to enhance the artwork. A large painting of a Tibetan monk dominates the far wall. Is it symbolic for the owner? “No,” Medrano replies. “It’s just a painting the family found and fell in love with.” Other unusual furnishings include a tequila bar, several handmade lamps and a kidney-shaped desk, accompanied by a cowhide desk chair. The chandelier hanging in the center of the room is a piece of art in itself, sculpted from bronze and faux tortoise shell. Medrano believes every room in a house should have a chandelier. “I always tell homeowners to remove ceiling fans and replace them with stately light fixtures,” he says. “A fabulous chandelier does so much for the aesthetics of a room.” The formal living room flows from the entry hall; the far windows offer a charming view of the back patio. The furnishings in this room were carefully selected; the silk ottoman is used in place of a coffee table, and the benches can be moved to the dining table for extra seating. A sofa and two whimsical accent chairs, which flank a sideboard, complete the grouping. A large painting of an angel hangs over the sideboard; Medrano accented the frame with an old violin. The room is filled with accessories, including a one-of-a-kind santo that Medrano embellished.

Beyond the formal living room a wall was knocked down to open the space into the kitchen; a major renovation was required here.
“We installed a travertine floor, new granite countertops and a marble island,” he says. “We put in a cooktop, a double oven and a hidden refrigerator. New cabinets were installed; we recycled the old ones for use in the garage and butler’s pantry. The vent hood was custom-made. To make a statement, a grouping of chandeliers was hung over the sink.” Across the room is the breakfast nook, where another beautiful chandelier hangs over a round wood table. The sleek chairs were creatively designed with pulls installed on their backs for easy maneuvering. The family room continues the home’s eclectic interior design. “The mantel was rebuilt since it serves as a focal point for the room,” Medrano says. However, the furnishings compete for attention. The sofa is upholstered in faux zebra hide with gold tones and leopard-print cushions. The coffee table is hand carved with an embossed leather surface. Lighting is provided by a French chandelier of hand-carved wood with wooden finials. The media center is another custom piece by Habersham. The painted screen in the center automatically rises with the touch of a button to reveal a 60-inch flat-screen television. Shelves in the cabinet hold the family’s antique book collection.

Beyond the family room is a short hallway featuring a butler’s pantry, a guest bath and two bedrooms. The bedroom on the right has an organic feel; the walls are faux-painted gray with a weathered silver metallic finish. The beautiful bed is another Habersham piece with a silver-gray finish. Two long panels flank the bed; they are antique reproductions of Italian frescoes. The lamp bases are gilded tree stumps. A Jack and Jill bath connects to the second bedroom, designed to make anyone smile. Painted a turquoise blue, the room features a hand-knotted rug depicting a floral scene in shades of yellow, orange, green and blue. A lime green leather chair with silver nail heads accents the room. The wrought-iron bed is custom-made. The chic paintings on either side of the bed are original oils by an Argentinean artist. The turquoise glass-beaded chandelier is a fun way to finish this graceful room.

A third bedroom was designed with a fresh look and painted in soft hues of blue and green. It features a queen-sized inlaid wood bed by Theodore Alexander. The lime green bedding has yellow leopard-print spots. A flat screen television hangs over a sideboard. The room’s monkey chandelier is one of a kind and is a perfect fit for the theme of the room.

The modern style of the master bedroom, painted in two shades of gray with silver, black and metal accents, offers a feeling of luxurious comfort. A distressed black Habersham bed is dressed in raw silk pillows, a duvet and a metal-colored blanket and is finished with a knitted gray silk throw. The geometric area rug beneath the bed extends to a sitting area where two modern fur chairs are arranged on either side of a unique glass-top table. A Venetian chandelier with hanging crystals and a metal shade hangs over the bed. A mirrored chest and another chest finished in black and silver serve as bedside tables and display coordinating lamps and art. A small settee poised by the shuttered window is a perfect place for a cozy afternoon with a book. The large credenza, enhanced with glass knobs, sits opposite the bed and serves as an entertainment center.

The master bath is filled with natural light from a window located over a Jacuzzi tub. The high ceiling gives the room the feeling of a spa and is a perfect foil for the unique crystal chandelier. Granite countertops and travertine materials were used to give the bathroom an updated look. The walls above the countertop are adorned with artwork depicting Roman coins and two unusual pendant light sconces. The extra-long mirrors were selected to draw the eyes up and complement the height of the room. The cabinet doors feature drawer pulls from Michael Aram.

The backyard needed a total overhaul. Medrano installed decking around the pool and built a shady arbor with outdoor furniture. A covered patio is furnished with comfortable chairs and a sofa. Natural plantings and an artful use of rock accents make the yard virtually maintenance free.

“This house was a special project for me,” Medrano says. “The family trusted me to take their home and make it something special for them, a place to entertain and enjoy their lives. It was fun to pull eclectic pieces together and create rooms that are a reflection of their personalities and their values. They enjoy living in it as much as I enjoyed creating it.”

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