Modern Lines Meet Natural Elements in Alys Beach Home

A vacation home in Alys Beach provides a large Southern family with much-needed connection to nature

104

One of the positive things to come out of the pandemic is that it reminded most of us of how healing connecting to nature is. When it all got to be too much and no electronic screen could assuage us, it was a stroll in the park, a walk on the beach, or a hike through the mountains that helped millions maintain their sanity. For homeowners with means, it was a time to seriously consider the location of a second home, and that right-outside-the-door commune with nature became a most appealing selling point. That was exactly the case with a Nashville couple who were determined to purchase a property in Florida that they could escape to easily. They found their place in the sun in the form of a 4,000-square-foot house that fit all their criteria in Alys Beach, the New Urbanist community in the Florida Panhandle known for white sand dunes, blue waters, and green infrastructure everywhere you look. 

When it was time to hire professional design help, they enlisted Ray Booth, a fellow Nashville resident who’s nationally renowned, and with whom they had worked before. “The family is as lovely as they could possibly be,” says the architect/designer. “I’ve had a long-standing relationship with them, and they’re kind, gracious people, just the quintessential Southern family.” Booth, who recently released his first book, Evocative Interiors, with Rizzoli, knew from previous experience that whatever he created would have to be defined by a fun, contemporary edge, so he set about conjuring up a joyful home for them by fusing modern lines with wood, stone, and other natural elements. In spirit with Alys Beach’s manifesto, the outside would be brought in, and the inside would spill out.

All of Booth’s projects start with asking what the end result should look like. From there, he finds objects that fulfill that answer, and inform future decisions along the way. This one was no different. “[The design process] is never about things having to look a certain way,” he says. “We have a general feel for what we need to accomplish. When you follow that feeling, the decisions become easy.”

Because the home is on the beach, Booth didn’t want the furnishings to be too precious. He sought comfortable pieces that the family could pile onto without worrying about stains or spills. “We knew the house was not just a beach house,” says Booth. “It’s temperate on the Panhandle, and we knew they would be going there year-round. For us, that led to using palettes that were not beachy, but that transcended the seasons, and offered warmth and comfort all year.” In came grays and gray-greens instead of cliché summery whites, and accessories that added layered complexity.

Although most of the house is saturated in interesting neutrals, Booth used the bedrooms as an opportunity to get playful with color, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the master suite and its lavender palette. “If you think about the inside of a seashell, you have this soft pearlescent color that became the inspiration for this room,” says Booth. “It’s quiet, calm, and ethereal, and has a real visual interest to it.”

The nine-month project went relatively smoothly despite some of the COVID-related delivery delays. In terms of furniture, some of the pieces were sourced online, while others were custom creations using the firm’s upholstery shops and woodworkers. Free rein from the homeowners meant there were no holdups due to differing opinions, and a successful end result, just as Booth had envisioned.  

As for the family’s reaction after the big reveal? “They just love it,” says Booth. “They’re happy as clams.” 

Story Credits:

Interior Design by Ray Booth and Perrin Mayne, McAlpine, Nashville, TN   

Architecture by Savoie Architects, Miramar Beach, FL

Builder Alys Beach Construction, Alys Beach, FL

Landscape Architecture by Horton Land Works, Freeport, FL

Text by Paige Bowers

Photography by Lisa Romerein, Santa Monica, CA

Open to see Interior Design Sources:

Sources

Courtyard

Lounge chairs – Four Hands, Houston, TX

Drink table – Serena & Lily, Atlanta, GA

Pool designed by Horton Land Works, Freeport, FL, and fabricated by Pool Man Jeff, Panama City Beach, FL

Living Room

Sofa – Avery Boardman, New York, NY

Pillows – Marie Smith, Drapes of Distinction, Nashville, TN

Club chairs – Hickory Chair by Ray Booth, High Point, NC

Ottoman – Hickory Chair, High Point, NC

Side table – Noir, J Douglas, Atlanta, GA

Drink table – Restoration Hardware, rh.com

Buffet – CFC, J Douglas, Atlanta, GA

Chandelier – Rejuventation, New York, NY

Drapery fabric – Angela Brown, New York, NY

Area rug – Merida, Boston, MA

Entry

Planter – Clay 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, FL

Side table – Club Cu, High Point, NC Wall art – Arhaus, arhaus.com

Conversation Area

Sofa custom designed by McAlpine, Nashville, TN, and fabricated by Bjork Studio, Atlanta, GA

Pillows – Marie Smith, Drapes of Distinction, Nashville, TN

Club chairs – Cisco Brothers, City of Commerce, CA

Wicker chair – Sika Design, Minneapolis, MN

Cocktail table – Club CU, High Point, NC

Buffet – Chelsea Editions, New York, NY

Lamp – Regina Andrews, Riverview, MI

Sconce – Visual Comfort, visualcomfort.com

Hanging light – Currey and Company, Atlanta, GA

Wall covering – Kelly Wearstler, Lee Jofa, Hauppauge, NY

Artwork – Natural Curiosities, Chatsworth, CA

Area rug – Dash & Albert, Dallas, TX

Upstairs Bar

Cabinetry designed by Alys Beach Interior Design, Alys Beach, FL, and fabricated by Grimes Cabinets LLC, Biloxi, MS

Shelving custom designed by McAlpine, Nashville, TN, and fabricated by PJ Maxwell, Nashville, TN and Roger Gramm, Just Plane Wood, Nashville, TN

Pendant lighting – Arteriors designed by Ray Booth, Lewisville, TX

Wicker chair – Made Goods, City of Industry, CA

Dining Area

Table custom designed by McAlpine, Nashville, TN, and fabricated by MDM Design Studio, Birmingham, AL

Chairs – Harbour Outdoor, New York, NY

Banquette custom designed by McAlpine, Nashville, TN, and fabricated by Bjork Studio, Atlanta, GA

Chandelier – Urban Electric, Charleston, SC

Drapery fabric – Angela Brown, New York, NY Area rug – Merida, Boston, MA

Primary Bath

Cabinetry – Grimes Cabinets LLC, Biloxi, MS

Hanging pendant – Visual Comfort, visualcomfort.com

Shower designed by Alys Beach Interior Design, Alys Beach, FL, and fabricated by Patina Tile, Panama City Beach, FL

Lounge – Serena & Lily, Atlanta, GA

Stool – Noir, J Douglas, Atlanta, GA

Primary Bedroom

Bed and headboard custom designed by McAlpine, Nashville, TN, and fabricated by Stewart Furniture, Fries, VA

Bedside chests – Noir, J Douglas, Atlanta, GA

Lamps – Arteriors, J Douglas, Atlanta, GA

Cabinet – Club CU, High Point, NC

Floor lamp – Visual Comfort, visualcomfort.com

Chaise and ottoman – Hickory Chair by Ray Booth, High Point, NC

Chandelier – Made goods, City of Industry, CA

Drapery fabric – Creation Baumann, Paul Plus, Atlanta, GA

Area rug – Lenos Ltd, Nashville, TN

Kitchen

Cabinetry designed by Alys Beach Interior Design, Alys Beach, FL, and fabricated by Grimes
Cabinets LLC, Biloxi, MS

Stools – Lee Industries, Conover, NC

Pendant lighting – Visual Comfort, visualcomfort.com

Outdoor Kitchen and Lounge

Sofa – Four Hands, Houston, TX

Pillows – Marie Smit, Drapes of Distinction, Nashville, TN

Lounge chairs – Lee Industries, Conover, NC

Cocktail table – Palecek, New York, NY

Drink table – Club CU, High Point, NC

Console – Made Goods, City of Industry, CA

 

Facebook Comments