Family and Light Fill Chic Naples Vacation Villa

One couple’s vacation villa is built around a light-filled great room that opens to expand indoor fun to the outdoors


During the renovation of their Grand Isle, Pelican Marsh vacation villa in Naples, Colleen and Kevin Mooney of Charleston may have discovered a secret to a current-day dilemma: how to get texting teens off their phones. “We asked our interior designers, Laurie Walter and Kelly Sereghy, to fill our home with light and to make the flow more accessible. They made the space so well that we gather as a family now, and our teens don’t go to their own rooms,” the wife says.

For a home to work well, Walter and Sereghy strive to understand their clients’ needs, lifestyle, preferences and aesthetics. “When making design decisions, it almost feels like we are ‘channeling’ our clients,” Walter says. So, they took down walls and repurposed rooms, and in the courtyard, all the old landscaping was removed to create a tranquil Zen-like garden. “It’s the light and the flow,” the wife says. “I think light makes you feel happy, and happiness brings everyone together.”

Now, the living areas of this 3,144-square-foot retreat are arranged around the pool and courtyard atrium. Garden views play a primary role, but each space also has a focal point, which is an important design concept that the design duo likes to employ. Throughout, the designers built upon a transitional/contemporary style; employed a neutral color scheme with pops of blue; utilized family-friendly fabrics; and, honoring the home’s architecture, added a slight midcentury modern flavor. In the family area of the great room, the striking custom wall panel behind the TV provides the focal point. “We had our cabinetmaker use the same finish as the console in front of it — a three-step, hand-rubbed greige finish — and with the LED lighting, it seems to float, making a spectacular visual impact,” Walter says. To add pop to the soothing neutral color palette, teal accent pillows pick up the blue in the hand-knotted area rug that Walter describes as a “work of art.”

The fountain and living wall of succulents, a landscape project directed by Kevin Mooney, draw the eye through to an adjacent sitting area that opens to all of the home’s social spaces. “These are the best seats in the house,” Walter says. “The living wall is the focal point, but as interior designers, we like to challenge ourselves to take in the whole environment.” As such, they created the suspended ceiling to make a statement. “It makes the area more inviting,” Sereghy says. “And it’s backlit, so at night, it looks like it levitates.”

In the new kitchen, the main wall was the obvious choice to highlight with details that include a beveled, cut-glass tile-mosaic backsplash in white and shimmery shades of beige and taupe. Cabinets in two tones; and an island covered in quartzite with a waterfall edge complete the culinary space. “We combined different materials for a diverse dichotomy,” Walter says.

Bathed in a more vibrant color palette, marine blue and turquoise pop with gray and off-white neutrals in the private spaces. In the den, a sculptural chandelier with its carbon-color shade set off with metal, becomes the focal point, while setting the stage in the master bedroom, a wall panel painted in a deep ultramarine blue centers the bed upholstered in a shimmering platinum weave.

The teens love the privacy of their bedrooms, of course, but they also love to lounge around the pool and hang out watching movies with friends in the cabana/guest suite. Here, the accent wall serves as the centerpiece. “We knew we had to make that wall special,” Walter says. “So, we put directional lighting in the soffit to bathe the wall in light and we designed the applied millwork to keep it neutral.”

“Our courtyard and pool are right off the family room and kitchen; it feels like one big room and it’s a happy space,” the wife says. “It feels better to be in the center of the house, then off and alone, and now, no one wants to be on a device.”  It’s a completely new environment. “The whole place is changed,” Walter says. “This home has moved from mundane to marvelous.”

Story Credits: 

Interior Design by Laurie Walter and Kelly Sereghy, Cardamon Design, LLC, Naples, FL

Builder Lisa and Howard Unnerstall, Hulu Construction & MANAGEMENT, LLC, Fort Myers, FL

Landscape Architecture by Scott Windham, Windham Studio, Inc., Bonita Springs, FL

Text by Christine Davis

Photography by Rick Bethem, Naples, FL

Open to see Interior Design Sources:

family room

Sofa – Thayer Coggin, IDS, Naples, FL

Lounge chair, cocktail table, occasional table and

cabinetry – Vanguard, IDS, Naples, FL

White vases – Global Views, IDS, Naples, FL

Lighted wall treatment fabricated by Inspired Woodworking, Naples, FL

Light pendant – Sonneman, Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Giclee artwork – Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Area rug – Hadinger, Area Rug Gallery, Naples, FL

sitting area

Armchairs – Thayer Coggin, IDS, Naples, FL

Cocktail ottoman – Vanguard, IDS, Naples, FL

Light fixture – Ampersand, Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Drapery fabric – JF Fabrics, IDS, Naples, FL


Cabinetry and island – Design Works, Naples, FL

Countertops – Coastal Stone, Naples, FL

Counter stools – Vanguard, IDS, Naples, FL

Light pendants – Elementum, Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Vases – Cyan (tall), Toscano (medium), Global Views (small),

IDS, Naples, FL

Hood and cooktop – Mullet’s Appliances, Naples, FL 


Sofa and cocktail tables – American Leather, IDS, Naples, FL

Armchair – Precedent, IDS, Naples, FL

Occasional tables – Bernhardt, IDS, Naples, FL

Table lamp – Flow Décor, IDS, Naples, FL

Chandelier – Hubbardton Forge, Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Artwork – Lupita Denogeán, Naples, FL

Shoji door – Suncoast Building Materials, Fort Myers, FL

Area rug – Hadinger, Area Rug Gallery, Naples, FL

master bedroom

Bed and bedside chests – Vanguard, IDS, Naples, FL

Wall treatment – Inspired Woodworking, Inc., Naples, FL

Fabric wall covering panels – Fabricut, IDS, Naples, FL

Table lamps – Flow Décor, IDS, Naples, FL

Bench – Bernhardt, IDS, Naples, FL

Light pendant – Andromeda, Wilson Lighting, Naples, FL

Drapery fabric – Robert Allen, D&D Building, New York, NY

Area rug – Hadinger, Area Rug Gallery, Naples, FL


Sofa – American Leather, IDS, Naples, FL

Armchair – Precedent, IDS, Naples, FL

Cocktail table and occasional tables – Universal Furniture,

IDS, Naples, FL

Table lamps – Flow Décor, IDS, Naples, FL

Wall treatment – Inspired Woodworking, Inc., Naples, FL

Drapery fabric – JF Fabrics, IDS, Naples, FL

Area rug – Feizy, IDS, Naples, FL


Window treatments – Window Wear Design, Naples, FL

Flooring – Hadinger Flooring, Naples, FL

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