Starbucks and a New York on Any Given Sunday

Florida Designer Homes Magazine Sunday Stories September-October 2013, Page 28 – 29 Latest cutting edge design trends in turning a traditional space into multi-functional and energizing. 

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On a Sunday morning in July, with an iced café Americano and a 6 dollar New York Times at Starbucks, enjoying the aroma of a brand new day is just grand. The day begins by reading a 4 page full disclosure on Naomi Campbell’s wedding gift in the Fashion and Style Section. Your eyes are racing so fast to find the big, bold keywords on what exactly is the gift, who bought it, and how much was the value worth. Of course, who would not have thought of this?  Glamorous lady architect Zaha Hadid was commissioned to build Naomi a spaceship-like, extravagant “city” home, all suspended on two 72 feet towers.  This blatantly wacky and – more surreal than Salvador Dali’s collection in St Pete – gift has left Houzz, Dwell, Huffington Post, and the Times all flabbergasted, bedazzled, and what-not.  It looks like something out of a Mel Brook’s Spaceballs movie or maybe the future look of an improved United Airlines air control tower.

The next Sunday afternoon, after getting lost in stardom, taking your iPad to Barnes and Noble seems like a much more mellow way to spend the day in sunny Florida, until you see stars again.  A constant flashing is blinking on and off of Curbed Miami’s blog. For Sale! For Sale! With a decaf iced tea, you frantically scroll down the blog.  All other apps freeze.  All battery bars stop.  The entire screen goes blank except for this headline: A Palm Island in Miami Beach is on the market, originally owned by a name you must whisper… Al Capone. $6.43 million? $7.43 million? Going once. Going twice. Sold! This Mediterranean mega-monster home has been taken off the market.  Now his bootlegging days will turn into a walking hall of art work, entitled “Call me Al.”

Inside his silver platter, even bigger than Tiffany’s, was his two-story swimming pool. This was not just a pool to jump in, it was the most electrifying selling point. A high load-bearing concrete wall enclosed the pool and kept all sunlight out from “his dark world”. Way back in the ‘40s, this wall allowed night time to work the clock 24 hours of gambling, gin and the man himself, Scarface.

Maybe it was best to stay away from the iPad, the Times, and the iTimes. However, the following Sunday, your subscribed Dwell had been hand-delivered to you, on a gold platter.  It is obvious why you always see these magazines saved as coffee magazines, such great viewing pleasure for anyone of any generation.  Perhaps, this magazine will be less star-struck.  The featured article was on sustainable improvements of the Cocoon House, a defined “Sarasota Modernism” project that dazzled Florida back in the 50s.  Multi-level exterior courtyards developed natural north, south, east and west views of the Gulf, the bay, and other reasons why people move to Florida. Imagine waking up on tranquility, while accepting reality that rent and utilities are part of the less star-struck package.

As we bedazzle our weekly Sundays with local, state, global news as well as entertainment and other aesthetics, we are extremely aware of what is conventional. Also, we aware of what is the “norm”, unless you need the “WOW” factor if you are auditioning for next season’s Real World or MTV Cribs.

Wouldn’t it be interesting to see more articles in how to update “less-gossipy” spaces of your home? Perhaps advanced, yet cost-effective appliances for the laundry room may be of more common interest, as opposed to throwing in a spiral staircase with Swarovski crystals wrapped around the curved railing in the middle of your living room, as the latest breaking news.

Let’s keep an eye out for a powerhouse e-magazine that showcases black and white images of Baby Boomers reviving their teenager days of socializing in the “Laundromat”. The generation only needed a dime to spare, and this was just absolutely the coolest thing to brag about.  Let’s brainstorm how to dazzle up the boring laundry room way in the back of your home, behind your kids coat racks and behind your dogs dinner dishes.

Grab some books and update all wall openings with a catalog of Anderson windows.  If possible, throw in a low-table base and cover it with pillows for a charming window seat. Check the walls for additional wire-sharing for a built-in flat screen, add jazz sounds of Miles Davis and Norah Jones, and suspend a row of halogen lamps from Lightology above a clear glass diffuser.  Elegant yet modern. Enjoy your Sunday Funday and invite family friends to the “laundry room”, as the place everyone is raving about.

See you next Sunday.