2021 Master Design Awards: Historic Renovation

by Kyle Clapham

Entablature, LLC

New Orleans, La. | entablature.com

Designer: MZ Architecture and Design | Location: New Orleans, La.
Square footage before: 2,774 | Square footage after: 3,202 | Project cost: $536,892

Photos: Chris Granger

The client sought to maintain and restore the historic character of the home while adding modern day amenities. Years of deferred maintenance had left behind tremendous rot, and the addition of central air conditioning while protecting original plaster details would require careful work. Any renovation, furthermore, necessitated approval from the city agency that governs historic homes.

A poorly constructed 1970s rear addition that housed the existing kitchen had to be rebuilt with a modern kitchen, custom banquet and new casement windows, allowing for visibility to the large backyard. It also accommodates a new master suite upstairs. Throughout the home, the company gutted the walls up to the plaster crown and restored crown and medallions to their former glory.

Barrier door: Huber ZipWall
Siding: James Hardie
Appliances: Thermador
Cabinets: Shiloh
Door hardware: Emtek
Kitchen countertops: Caesaerstone
Bathroom countertops: Vicostone
Tankless water heater: Noritz
HVAC: Carrier
Paint/stain: Sherwin-Williams
Doors/windows: Marvin
Plumbing fixtures: Moen; Kohler; Delta

Craiker Architects and Planners
Ausmus Structural Engineering

Napa, Calif. | craiker.com

Location: Old Town Napa, Calif. | Square footage before: NA | Square footage after: NA | Project cost: $1.5 million

Photos: Julia Conatser

This 1890s two-story stone foundation home had survived the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and the 2014 Napa earthquake, but not the deferred maintenance and varmints living within in it. The owner/contractor initially planned to demolish the structure but researched with the architect and decided to invest two years of construction and monies for its resurrections. In order to make it economically sound, the architect showed and expansion of the floor plan to include a new ground-floor master and upper-floor guest suites. But the most innovative improvement was to add a new garage with a granny flat above.

The aging and deteriorating exterior initially was planned to be replaced with simple horizontal lap siding, however the architect and the owner researched the original house and felt using all cedar shingle would be most appropriate and historic. The construction included reinforcing the foundations, virtually replacing all the interior walls, flooring and finishes and a substantial upgrade of all utilities.

The granny flat has a two-car garage below and parking in the driveway. The architect’s challenge was designing the structure to tie in and be consistent with the 120-year-old main residence. The use of shingles and hig- pitched roofs tied the two structures together harmoniously. Because of its close proximity to public transportation, no additional parking was required.

While a limited area was left for a private yard area, the architect and builder developed a beautiful rear yard, a gathering spot in the front yard and, most important, maintained the historic front porch overlooking a Napa City Park. Its location near busy streets required all new highly insulated acoustically treated windows and doors. California’s highly restrictive energy standards required heavy insulation and high-efficacy furnace and water heater equipment.

Lisman Studio

Midvale, Utah | lismanstudio.com

Location: Salt Lake City, Utah | Square footage before: 6,500 | Square footage after: 6,500 | Project cost: $1.2 million

Photos: Rebekah Westover Photography

The goal was to bring the home back to much of its original character and historical precedent while bringing electrical and mechanical systems up to date. By guiding the current home to current codes, historical features such as moldings, plasterwork, original flooring and windows were to be treated with great care and consideration during the updating process. Once these updated mechanical systems were in place, the process could begin to restore and put the home thoughtfully back together

Through a series of remodels and modifications over nearly 100 years, much of the home’s original character and historical significance had been lost; however, key components of the home remained and provided a clear roadmap of how the residence looked originally. High function areas, such as the kitchen and bathrooms, needed to work for how clients live in 2021, not 1924. The challenge was to update these areas while still having the look of the spaces feel seamless with the more period areas of the home.

Great care was taken to protect and guard areas of the home that still retained their period details from the 1920s. In addition, the Spanish Colonial period of architecture and design created its own unique set of challenges and research. The design team spent time carefully studying and documented the historical details of the home. Decorative ironwork, plaster details, leaded windows and intricate patterns in stone and art glass all needed to be cleaned, repaired, restored and sometimes replaced to their original locations and character.

During the mechanical and electrical process of bringing the home to current codes, great care was taken to protect historical areas of the residence from damage. Because of the careful documentation prior to the demolition of certain rooms and areas, it became a guide for putting the home back together and taking areas that had suffered from heavy remodels and renovations in the past.

Flooring upstairs guest bath: Datile, 6” Hexagon Mosaic
Wall tile upstairs guest bath: Datile, Color Wheel Classic
Flooring master bath: Datile, Crema Marfil Marquise Marble
Wall tile master bath: Datile, Color Wheen Classic
Countertop: Datile, Calacatta Extra Polished Marble
Molding: Bringuard, 3/8” x ¾”

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