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For The Home

Modern Spanish Colonial Home

Author: Susan Regan
Issue: February, 2012, Page 86
Photos by Christiaan Blok

Arched openings provide access to the living room, where the fireplace wall and soffits are painted a brownish-gray. Interior designer Charles Glover established a sense of “light and brightness” with a crystal chandelier, mirrored wall panels and furnishings with Lucite bases. The rug, a blend of purple and fuchsia threads, is a custom design.


Modern Meets Spanish Colonial in a Home That Is Anything But Ordinary

At first glance, Kaleim Manji and Elizabeth Davison’s Scottsdale home has the appearance of a Spanish Colonial residence, with an arched covered entry, hand-cast clay roof tiles and brick-capped walls. However, the glass-tiled wall fountain and sleek furnishings in the entry courtyard suggest that the interiors are going to be anything but what you might expect.

Step inside, and one is greeted by a living room filled with Modern furniture, mirrored and crystal accents, a Pop Art painting, and a gray and cream palette with bursts of purple and fuchsia. Interior designer Charles Glover says that the homeowners like the authentic feel of Spanish Colonial architecture yet wanted furnishings to be stylish with a touch of glamour.

The design team, which consisted of Glover, architectural designer Steve Simpson and builder Vineyard Homes, achieved this juxtaposition by blending Old World architectural elements with Modern furnishings. “We respected the architectural vernacular of the home by ensuring that all of the details stayed within the ‘bones’ of the house,” Glover explains. “Mixing in a Contemporary color scheme with shades of gray, taupe and charcoal helped convey a more Modern feel.”

According to Simpson, the house is “textbook Spanish Colonial design on the outside.” The style continues indoors with such details as arches and barrel- and groin-vaulted ceilings. Glover chose to highlight these Old World architectural elements in unanticipated ways. For example, the barrel-vaulted ceiling in the master bedroom is painted a rich brownish-gray, which accents the room’s black and white furnishings.

The designer says he kept the interiors from feeling “overdone” and created a sense of continuity by utilizing the same materials and colors throughout. Limestone and bamboo flooring, for instance, are found in many of the rooms; polished-chrome hardware adorns doors and cabinetry; and the color palette consists of five hues in varying tones of gray and cream, with accessories and artwork adding contrast.

Glover describes the style of this unique home as Contemporary Spanish Colonial. “You’re getting the best of both worlds,” he says. “The Hollywood glamour of the 1930s meets Spanish Colonial.”

Instead of applying Venetian plaster to walls of the dining room, Charles Glover used a striated metallic finish with the look of wallpaper. The groin-vaulted ceiling—a traditional Spanish Colonial architectural element—was embellished with a silver metallic paint topped with a metallic glaze in a charcoal hue. Traditional-style chairs are upholstered in velvet; a damask print was used on chair backs as well as for draperies. The Pop Art-inspired painting by Nelson De La Nuez is a commissioned piece.

The powder room is imbued with a Modern ambience, and features a black granite vessel sink, sleek “waterfall” faucet, and stagger-set mini black subway tiles. The facing wall is painted a metallic hue with a striated finish.
Faux eelskin fabric upholsters the platform bed in this guest bedroom. Charles Glover explains that the custom draperies are created with a color-blocking technique that features a patterned floral motif on the lower third of each panel. “This approach gives you decoration without all of the fussy details,” he says. Further simplifying the room’s look, the fabric used for window coverings also was used for bedding.


An exaggerated quilted-Ultrasuede headboard is the centerpiece of the master bedroom. Nightstands have a lacquered finish, and bedding features a subtle tone-on-tone paisley print. The wall and ceiling are painted a brownish-gray.
Marble clads the floor, tub surround and vanity walls in the master bath. A Venetian glass-style chandelier adds a touch of Old World glam, while the artwork lends a strong graphic element. Behind the tub wall is a shower outfitted with windows that allow natural light to fill the room. Sconces are crystal and polished chrome; countertops are CaesarStone.
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