Seemingly nothing we’ve learned to count on has remained unaffected by the global pandemic, and the Pasadena Showcase House of Design is no exception. Unfortunately, it proved impossible to craft a workable plan that would safely shepherd the 25,000 people typically expected through the house. Nevertheless, the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts board of directors determined that the remodel would proceed, with the results made available to the public via virtual tours. Beginning October 2, the 56th Annual Showcase House of Design became available for viewing via Ultimate Viewpoint:56, a state-of-the-art 3D interactive tour.
The Locke House is a 6,700-square-foot, 1937 Federal-country estate on two acres of parkland grounds. Located in the historic Santa Anita Oaks neighborhood, the house was designed by renowned architect Gerald R. Colcord, known as “Hollywood Society’s Architect,” and was featured in a 1939 issue of Architectural Digest. Originally built for the then-exorbitant cost of $30,000, the house appeared prominently in the 1998 Academy Award-winning film Gods and Monsters. For this year’s Showcase, it has been graciously reimagined by 17 interior and four exterior design professionals.
Fortunately for us (and you), while public tours were impossible, limited socially distanced in-person tours were made available to the press and Pasadena Magazine took grateful advantage. We present a few of our favorite designs here.
For a more complete viewing of all rooms of the 2020 Showcase House of Design, visit pasadenamag.com.
FAMILY ROOM – Fiona Lau, Fiona Lau Interiors
“This room is designed in a modern, classic colonial style. I repeated the geometry throughout, including in the custom-made shelves and custom wall art. Importantly, the ceiling is only 7’8,” so I gave the room a sense of height by keeping all the furniture low profile.”
BELLA NOTTE LOGGIA AND COTTAGE RHAPSODY – Shari Tipich, Shari Tipich Decorative Design & Artistry
“This is my fifth consecutive year. It’s really just a romantic nook inspired by a little bit of everything Italian. The walls and ceiling panels are all hand-painted.”
CALIFORNIA SUN TERRACE – Chad Morrill, California Waterscapes
VERANDA – Louise O’Malley, Louise O’Malley Interior Design
“I wanted a space that people were comfortable just landing in, but also dining in. It is a sizeable space and it needed to invite you into the rest of the property. This was originally all screened in (which we removed). This table is sustainable, made from a remnant slab that had been lying in the stone yard since 1980. “
THE GALLERY – Greg Parker and Paul Richard Heintz III, Parker West Interiors
“Traditionally, living rooms don’t get much use. We wanted to reimagine the space to be more flexible, to show a different way of using it. Steinway has invented a way to digitize the world’s greatest pianists playing and then feed it back through the piano so you can hear them (playing the keys) on your piano while watching it on a screen at the same time.”
BREAKFAST ROOM – Jeanne Chung, Cozy Stylish Chic
“This is a tiny little room where the family of nine ate two meals a day. It was apparently their favorite room in the house. One of the design challenges we were given was to make it sustainable so we wanted to go all out. The wallpaper is made from recycled newsprint. The art is made out of “trash.” Actually, upcycled, used high-end shopping bags and boxes from Hermès and Yves Saint Laurent. It’s a room full of contrasting colors and textures. It’s a fun room. I want people’s eyes to wander when they come in here.”
“Arpy did the ceiling. I just wanted black and white. Butterflies and veins. It reminded me of a Disney dining room where black-and-white wall animation came alive over the course of the meal.”
KITCHEN – Cliff and Laura Muller, Four Point Design Build
“The idea was to create a space for a real foodie family that had at least two kids and a couple of pets. We consult on creating spaces that contribute to mental health. With that comes sustainability and recyclable materials…There is a tremendous amount of data that has come to light over the last 10 years that says joy and happiness contribute to better biology…There is a study that I like to incorporate about sight lines. Typically, we think we have to maximize storage and we do that with big heavy cabinets everywhere. But the data shows that when we scan with our eyes there are stress points and triggers…When we are constantly negotiating around things visually, that generates anxiety. It becomes emotionally exhausting…What we want is for it to be all open, minimal colors, and lots of layered neutrals.”
HEARTH OVEN – “The stone gets to 850 degrees while the dome gets to 1,300, yet the outside is only warm to the touch. You can get 90-second pizzas depending on the crust. At that rate you can have 200 people all eating hot pizza at the same time.”
PRIMARY SUITE – Jhoiey Ramirez, Studio Jhoiey
“I wanted to reflect the glamour of the ‘30s when the house was built in this suite. I took my inspiration from the garden for the greens I chose and used a customized headboard that was commissioned for the space (which repeats the shape of the original door frames). We used the same fabric for the chairs. The chandelier really adds a lot of glamour. I had a concept, but I got lucky when I found the chair and mirror with the period Federal details.”
DRESSING ROOM – “It used to be two narrow hallways which we opened up. The floors are all recycled leather with a really nice feel. The shelves are covered in recycled leather from car seats and the wall covering is real canvas inspired by surplus military tents.”
PRIMARY BATH – “One of my signature styles is the lighted drain trough. I really don’t like seeing the drain. And the trough eliminates the possibility of flooding and solves the “zero curb” shower issue. There are no hand valves, everything is controlled by the lighted panel—including music and aromatherapy.”
POOL HOUSE LOUNGE – ASID
“This is a room that is designed to reflect a family that is well traveled. You’ll see pieces from different parts of the world—we have African, we have Malaysian, we have Indonesian. We removed a huge wood barbeque that had blackened the wall and put in a small city-approved grill along with a wine chiller. Along with some custom cabinets, we refurbished existing cabinetry and applied a faux finish to give a bit of pattern. The carpet is true indoor-outdoor, you could put it in an airport and it would take the traffic.”