• Master Bedroom

  • Living Room

  • Dining Room

  • Kitchen

  • Game Room

  • Family Room

One Man’s Castle

“Eloise Kubli turns a spec home to a royal escape.”


2011 National Dream Home Award

2011 ASID Design Excellence Award


Designer - Eloise Kubli, ASID

Photographer - Cordero Studios

Text - Jana Soeldner Danger

Publication - Boca Design and Architectural Review

When luxury home builder Ford Robinette decided to move into one of his own spec properties at prestigious Hawks Landing in Plantation, interior designer Eloise Kubli had the enviable task of transforming the interior. She had helped a team of designers create the spec home’s décor, which needed to be a universal, neutral style chosen to appeal to a wide variety of potential buyers. Now, the goal was to turn it into a retreat that reflected Robinette’s personal tastes and lifestyle. “He wanted it to feel like a traditional Old-World castle, very masculine, with lots of wood and detailing, and also have a warm, comfortable ambience,” Kubli says.

The home has five bedrooms, five-and-a-half baths and 5,480-airconditioned- square-feet. Arched doorways and windows, stone columns and high ceilings provided a perfect architectural backdrop for the European-style ambience Kubli wanted to create. She chose a color palette of delicate champagnes and ecrus along with rich coppers and bronzes, hand-carved woods, elegant fabrics and custom-made furnishings with the curvilinear shapes she knew her client loved. And while everything about the décor needed to coordinate, matching wasn’t necessary. “I like to contrast materials and colors,” she says. “It makes things more interesting. Colors, elements and textures should work off each other, but I don’t want them to be the same.”

Kubli, who recently won an ASID award for design excellence and a national Dream Home Award for this home, also changed the home’s incandescent lighting to halogen. “It’s a whiter and more natural-looking light,” she says.”

A custom-made, pecky cypress front door leads into the home, where the first view from the foyer is the formal living room. To create a more distinctive look, Kubli added cast-stone detailing to existing columns and arches. Three layers of paint, champagne and ecru with a bronze metallic topcoat for shimmer created a faux finish for the walls. The ceiling, which sparkles with recessed lighting, has the same finish in a slightly darker tone. “I wanted it to have more bronze and copper than the walls to give it a rich, masculine look, and also to better define the crown molding,” Kubli says.

mmediately drawing the eye is the cast stone fireplace with a facing that rises dramatically to the living room’s 20-foot ceiling. Centered on the facing are a unique, bronze-finished ceramic tile hanging with a fleur de lis design, and two custom-made wrought-iron lanterns. “They give dimension and also emphasize the scale of the fireplace,” Kubli says.

A vertical stripe pattern in the floor-to-ceiling, champagne-colored silk drapery panels accentuates the height of the large windows. An underlying layer of sheers on the lower level opens and closes to let in light or provide privacy, and wrought-iron rods and rings complement the metal lanterns on the fireplace.

The gleaming, honed-and-glossed Bottichino marble flooring provides a stunning yet neutral canvas for furnishings. The wool rug used to add warmth and define space isn’t an antique, but it has been washed so it appears to be one. Furnishings look elegant, but Kubli also chose them for comfort. “Ford is very tall and athletic, so deep seating was important to him,” she says.

The sofa has a gracefully curved, hand-carved wood frame with nail-head detailing, and a body upholstered in ecru chenille. Multiple pillows in varied shapes and fabrics such as silk, damask and brocade add visual and tactile interest. The highly polished finish on the handcarved frames of the four custom chairs gleam with a gilt accent, while the fronts and backs are upholstered in different colored leathers: one side is ecru, the other is copper. The large, marble-topped cocktail table has a carved wood base and curves to complement the shapes of other furnishings in the room.

A balcony overlooking the living room might be straight out of a period romance. Offering a dramatic view from the second floor, it is defined by a heavy-gauge aluminum railing, its intricate scrollwork painted soft black and hand rubbed with an antique gold finish. Stylish Dining Columns topped with decorative caststone wraparounds frame the archway leading into the formal dining room. The space has the same marble flooring as the living room, as well as walls with a similar faux finish. “But I used a lighter color on the ceiling, because it’s not quite as high as the one in the living room,” Kubli says.

A custom ecru cornice tops silk drapery panels of the same color. “To add contrast and dimension, I accented the cornice with black iron medallions and cord trim,” Kubli says.

The round walnut table, which can seat eight, has a beveled mirror apron, and a base finished in bronze and silver metallic paints. Gold-leaf detailing accents the wood chair frames. Fronts and seats are upholstered in ecru damask with black brocade detailing, while the backs are covered in solid ecru silk to contrast with nickel latticework.

Over the table hangs a crystal chandelier that matches a pair of sconces on the wall. A tall, antique-mirrored china closet in a wall niche contrasts with the low, serpentine-shaped buffet on the opposite side of the room.

Space to Relax In the family room, Kubli removed the original drywall ceiling and installed wood box beams that flow into the adjacent kitchen. A wall unit built to fit into an existing niche houses the TV and sound system. Taupe chenille covers the down-filled sofa, contrasting with the copper-colored leather upholstery on a pair of chairs. The sofa table has a cast stone top and a wood base, while the wood-based cocktail table features an embossed copper top.

TV, beverage center, refrigerator and ice maker complete the gentleman’s club décor. “It’s a room any guy could love,” Kubli says.

Powder Room Drama Wall tiles made from real gold and copper leaf create drama in the powder room. Horizontal copper pencil lines define the tiles, and crystal pendant lights reflect their glow. A marble slab with similar gold and copper tones holds a crystal vessel sink, and burnished LusterStone gives walls and ceiling a cognac-hued iridescence.

Romantic Luxury in the Master Suite In the sumptuous upstairs master suite, Kubli created an elegant, private retreat. “The space is all about luxury, romance and escape,” she says. “I wanted him to feel like a king when he wakes up in the morning.”

The large 18-by-36-foot bedroom has a marble fireplace, a cozy sitting area defined by marble columns and dark, hand-scraped wood flooring. “Laying the floor on the diagonal emphasized the scale of the room and made it more visually interesting,” Kubli says.

After tearing out the existing tray ceiling, Kubli installed hand-carved, wood box beams. To contrast with the soft, buttery yellow of the walls and the ceiling itself, she painted the beams white and added champagne gold detailing. White crown molding provides additional contrast, and to break up a long, straight wall, she used molding to form rectangular frames, then applied a subtle faux finish inside of them.

Silk draperies accented by velvet ribbons and tiny crystals that reflect light frame the windows. “The space is so large that the draperies needed to be made from a very heavy fabric,” Kubli says. “Otherwise, they would have been too subtle for the scale of the room.”

Several lighting sources, recessed fixtures, lamps, sconces and two bronze chandeliers with antique gold detailing and large crystal pendants, can conjure different moods. The fourposter bed has a headboard with a hand-carved wood frame and a cognac-hued leather inset, while the nightstands feature gold detailing. At the foot of the bed, a loveseat covered in cut chenille faces an armoire housing a TV.

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