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Monte Vista Makeover

Monte Vista is a historical district located in San Antonio, filled with beautiful homes built from 1890 – 1930. The area officially became part of the National Register of Historic Places in 1998. This eclectic neighborhood is filled with homes ranging in architectural styles from Queen Anne and Georgian, to Moorish and Victorian. I had the privilege of working on one of these grand homes built in 1929 by the architectural firm of Adams and Adams. The home is of the Spanish Eclectic architectural style and is filled with outstanding ceiling, tile, and ironwork details, just to mention a few of the unique features.

When the owner of this historic home contacted me, she wanted to redo a garden room at the far end of the home. She envisioned a light and airy room where she could read and have her morning coffee. The room had three pairs of French doors leading to the garden as well as four traditional casement windows with charming round windows above each one. Needless to say, the room was flooded with light. Of particular interest was the 14 foot barrel-vaulted ceiling with ornate plaster detail. I could not wait to start this project!

Here is a photo of the room before we started. It was painted a light peach color and one of the windows had been boarded over by the previous owner. You can see the start of repair work to the window on the left.

Monte Vista - Before

First, I designed a furniture plan. The client did not have any furniture that she wanted to use, so new furniture was selected. Next, my assistant and I selected several rugs and brought them to the space for my client’s approval. We then chose the fabrics, furniture, artwork, and lighting. We replaced the chandelier with a beautiful rock crystal chandelier that had a much more open feel than the existing chandelier.

Monte Vista - Chandelier

Next, I designed several options for the window treatments. On a whim, I drew an elevation showing an oriental-inspired cornice and recommended simply using bamboo woven wood blinds on the other windows. To my surprise, this was the drawing my client selected. I was thrilled because I knew that the cornice would add drama and height to the window. Below is a photo taken right after the installation.

Monte Vista - Window

Electrical and carpentry work were done and the room was painted a soft white. Scaffolding was brought in to install the 70 pound chandelier and to paint the ceiling. See the “after” photo below.

Monte Vista - After

It was such a pleasure to work on this magnificent old home. The Monte Vista neighborhood is a true San Antonio treasure!

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