Heavenly Elegance in Park Shore Beach Home

With a celestial palette and a focus on scale, balance, and proportion, a design team brings a retired couple’s ideal home to life

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The irresistible charm of Florida’s Gulf Coast is not a  joke. After spending just one weekend in Naples, Karen and Forrest Robinson decided to make the city their retirement destination. Native Southerners who have lived in Atlanta, Miami, and Tampa, they fell in love with the tranquility of the area, the pristine nature of the community, and the gorgeous white-sand beaches. They admired the condominiums lining the coast paralleling Grand Boulevard, which shares access to a stretch of parks along the beach, boasting green lawns, manicured palms, and bunnies hopping about at dusk and dawn. This, along with glistening views of the sea, offered them the best of both worlds. Before they knew it, the couple purchased a condo at the Solamar, and Forrest soon found his place on the HOA board. They made great friends, settled into a supper club, and were quite happy—then a listing for an apartment at the Aria at Park Shore building right next door popped into their lives. 

“The penthouse at Aria was as special as it was unusual,” says Janie Wilburn of The Jane Group, who had met the couple when designing their daughter’s Atlanta home. “The construction on the unit was never completed, and it was never occupied, but the Robinsons had to see it—in a way no one should go see the neighbor’s puppies with the intention of not taking one home.”

Enchanted by the natural light and sweeping views looking out to the water from every room, Karen and Forrest couldn’t stop themselves from putting a contract on the 5,000-square-foot, 16th-floor unit immediately. At their new residence, they can see the mile-long stretch of boardwalk that lines the beach, and they have easy access to  the shopping and dining spots at the waterfront Venetian Village. “The views from our five terraces are incredible, with north, south, and western vistas,” says Forrest. “We can track the sun from sunup to sundown, and we end most days sitting on the west balcony watching the sunset.”

Impressed with Wilburn’s design expertise, the Robinsons didn’t think twice about hiring her—along with BCB Homes of Naples—to create and construct their new abode. “I think it was while watching their daughter and son-in-law build their dream home that they remembered how much they enjoyed the process of bringing something to life,” says the designer. “When they came to me, they had three inspiration images and one descriptor, relaxed elegance. Their muse images all featured light floors, neutral finishes, and spectacular water views.”

Wilburn’s goal was to generate balance and symmetry so the couple could have focal points in each room that would complement and not compete with the views. The original design features were angular, and several ceiling details broke up the spaces into choppy rooms. To ensure parity of form and function, she worked through issues to maximize storage in the kitchen and bar area, which meant closing off a pass-through window. After much deliberation, the homeowners agreed to square off the kitchen, which allowed for a small yet functional pantry hidden behind tall cabinet doors.

The primary bathroom posed similar challenges, as it backed into the center of the building, creating odd angles that stopped the eye from traveling. To create a luxuriously airy space, Wilburn again squared off the area, which meant losing square footage, while making up for it with ample, well-considered storage and gorgeous finishes. “The reality is that if you define a space well, it doesn’t have to be huge,” says Wilburn. “Scale, balance, and proportion are critical to good design, which speaks to our process of modifying the architecture throughout.”

Mirroring the seascape, the interior palette emulates a relaxed sophistication. French oak flooring fumed to a perfect warm blonde creates a refined beachy vibe, and the foyer, grand room, and office showcase creamy limestone embedded with tiny fossils. Neutral creams, grays, and taupes meld smoothly with shades of blue, playing off the light flooding the home.

The kitchen, family, and dining areas deliberately incorporate performance fabrics so the couple’s two dogs and seven grandchildren can relax and spend time together. The “grand” room—with its custom bar and sleek piano—is reserved for grown-up entertaining, with more luxurious finishes. “When you walk in the front door of this penthouse, your eye goes straight down the hall to the gulf view and, at the same time, takes in a tremendous amount of light,” says Wilburn. “I wanted everything we designed here to be of that caliber and live up to that moment—light-filled and ethereal—capitalizing on the magic of simultaneously being on the water and in the sky.”

“We love to entertain, and we especially enjoy the large kitchen island and the stunning built-in bar in the grand room where our guests can visit and experience the views,” adds Forrest. “We could not have had a better outcome. Janie, her team, and BCB Homes were amazing. It was a true collaborative effort that brought our beautiful home to life.”

Story Credits:

Interior Design by Janie Wilburn, The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA

Text by Jeanne De Lathouder

Photography by Lauren Chambers, Atlanta, GA

Open to see Interior Design Sources:

Sources

Family Room

Sofa – Wesley Hall, Acquisitions Atlanta, Atlanta, GA

Club chairs – E.J. Victor, Bay Design Store, Naples, FL

Cocktail table – Hickory White, Brice LTD, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Cocktail table poufs – Thibaut, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Side table – Bay Design Store, Naples, FL

Lamps – Visual Comfort, Atlanta, GA

Decorative globes – Interiors Market, Atlanta, GA

Area rug – Stark Carpet, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Kitchen 

Cabinetry and island designed by The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA, and 

fabricated by Bell Cabinetry and Design, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Hood designed by The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA, and fabricated by Bell Cabinets, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Stools – RH, Atlanta, GA

Pendant lighting – The Urban Electric Co., Charleston, SC

Dining Area

Table – Tritter Feefer, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Chairs – Mr. and Mrs. Howard, Brice LTD, Atlanta, GA

Chair Fabric – Maria Flora, Paul +, ADAC, Atlanta, GA 

Console – Mr. and Mrs. Howard, Max and Co., Atlanta, GA

Artwork – Kevin Sloan, Gardner Colby Gallery, Naples, FL

Chandelier – RH, Atlanta, GA

Living Room (“Grand Room”)

Sofa – Thayer Coggin, High Point, NC

Club chairs – Kravet, ADAC, Atlanta, GA 

Cocktail table – RH, Atlanta, GA

Drink table – Huff Harington, Atlanta, GA

Bar designed by The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA, and fabricated by Bell Cabinetry and Design, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Stools – Hickory Chair, The Finished Room, Atlanta, GA

Chandelier – Serip Lighting, Jim Thompson, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Area rug – Stark Carpet, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Guest Bathroom

Round mirror – Noir, Asbury’s Design, Atlanta, GA

Wallcovering – Schumacher, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Guest Bedroom

Beds designed by The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA, and fabricated by Skyline Furniture, Thornton, IL 

Sconces – Visual Comfort, Atlanta, GA

Drapery – The Drapery Room, Atlanta, GA

Drapery fabric— Cowtan and Tout, ADAC, Atlanta, GA 

Carpet – Stark Carpet, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Primary Bedroom

Bed and headboard designed by The Jane Group, Atlanta, GA, and fabricated by Peacock Romo, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Bedside table – RH, Atlanta, GA

Chandelier – Visual Comfort, Atlanta, GA

Primary Bathroom

Cabinetry – Bell Cabinetry and Design, ADAC, Atlanta, GA

Mirrors – RH, Atlanta, GA

Chandelier – Visual Comfort, Atlanta, GA

Sconces – The Urban Electric Co., Charleston, SC

Tub – Jacuzzi, Ferguson Buckhead, Atlanta, GA

Flooring – Ruben Sorhegui Tile, Naples, FL

Throughout

Builder – BCB Homes, Naples, FL 

Window treatments – The Drapery Room, Atlanta, GA 

Venetian plaster – Moxie Studios, Naples, FL

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