Vacation Homes: River and Coast
When these locals need an escape, they head to points south.
By the Beach
Falls Church residents Randy and Cheryl Stone were on the lookout for a vacation home in 2015 when they discovered Talis Park, a new luxury golf community on Florida’s Gulf Coast. The empty nesters have kids and grandkids out of state, but they decided not to be limited by geography—so long as their destination of choice was an easy flight for all.
“We’d been to Naples a few times and liked the area,” says Randy, an avid golfer, who, like his wife, is a consultant. “While looking for a place to gather the family, we were also thinking longer term about a spot for eventual retirement.”
After purchasing a yet-to-be-built, three-bedroom, 3,000-square-foot condo with an open floor plan, the couple brought in Pamela Harvey, an interior designer with offices in Oakton, Virginia, and St. Petersburg, Florida.
Harvey flew back and forth to Florida during construction to make sure the materials and lighting specifications were carried out according to plan. Upscale fixtures—such as the beaded Ro Sham Beaux chandelier that now hangs from a painted tray ceiling above the dining room table—were a cut above the norm and lent a certain sophistication, she explains. But they were also tricky to install, in that condo spaces are normally prewired for lower-grade, standard light fixtures. Hence the need to be hands-on while the electrical lines were being roughed in.
The condo is a 15-minute drive to the Gulf of Mexico, and its décor says ocean. Shades of blue—from aqua and periwinkle to cobalt and navy—form a common color thread and give the interiors a decidedly beachy feel. In the guest bedroom, an electric blue chest from Bungalow 5 puts an unexpected pop of color between custom-designed twin beds.
For upholstered furniture, Harvey chose indoor-outdoor Sunbrella fabrics that withstand fading and everyday wear-and-tear, offering the easy living and low maintenance of a holiday retreat. At the same time, she says, the space was designed “to possess the elegance of a forever home.” And the Stones are increasingly inclined to treat it as such.
“Most people talk about Florida in the winter, and we certainly come here then, but it’s also great in the summer,” Randy says. “There are fewer crowds and there’s always that coastal breeze.”
Pamela Harvey Interiors
Charlotte Safavi is a magazine writer and stylist. She lives in Alexandria with her husband and son.