Detroit Home Design Awards 2019 Readers' Choice Ballot for Best Overall Home

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Voting deadline is Feb. 8, 2019
As part of the annual Detroit Home Design Awards competition, you're invited to vote for your favorite overall home. Just view the images here and indicate your preference. The Readers' Choice will be revealed in the April/May 2019 Design Awards issue of Detroit Home.

 

View the entries below and select a button on the left to indicate your favorite. Enter your name and e-mail address and then submit your vote!

*Name and e-mail address are required to prevent ballot stuffing.

Entry 1

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Inspired by the Shingle-style homes of the Hamptons, this residence exudes a classic, timeless elegance. Extensive courtyard walls of Connecticut fieldstone artfully manipulate the rolling terrain, establishing the siting of the home, pool, and spa on the acreage by defining terraced hardscape and landscape plateaus. Manicured gardens featuring boxwood hedges, hydrangeas, and pink carpet roses soften the hardscape. A sense of permanence is established with the integration of the Connecticut fieldstone into the classic clapboard-and-cedar-shake detailing of the exterior. Abundant groupings of Palladian-style and cottage-style double-hung windows, and multiple pairs of French doors, result in natural-light-filled interiors and create a connectedness between the interior and exterior. Sophisticated rooms designed for gracious entertaining, with refined furnishings and detailing, are blended with charming, livable spaces. An indoor full-court basketball court, batting cage, dance studio, and theater accommodate the active lifestyle of this family of six. 

 

Entry 2

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This Prairie-style ranch home is sited on a grassy knoll that gently rolls down to meadowland and a forest. The strong horizontal and vertical lines that define the architecture root the home to the land, while the low-sloping metal roof and deep-overhanging eaves create a sheltering aura. Planter boxes extend the energy of the architecture into the landscape, while bands of windows accentuate the horizontality and connect the exterior and interior environments. The stone, wood, metal, and glass that comprise the exterior are seamlessly carried throughout the interior spaces, where Mid-century Modern design elements are fused with a modern interpretation of the Prairie style. Custom-designed and artisan-crafted furniture, showcasing the natural beauty of black walnut and tamo ash, are juxtaposed with oxidized metals, granite, slate, leather, and wool. Warm and cool tones, derived from the changing colors of the sky, counterbalance the warm wood tones.

 

Entry 3

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This Prairie-style home was conceived and developed with the architecture, interior design, hardscape and landscape, and site intrinsically interlinked, creating a unified composition and an immensely livable home. The horizontal and vertical lines of the architecture are delineated with stone, wood, metal, and glass in a way that’s harmonious and blurs the boundaries between the exterior and interior environments. Floor-to-ceiling panes of glass and sliding glass doors enable wide-open views of the surrounding landscape and Zen-garden courtyards. The open floor plan flows seamlessly, unified by beautiful, dark-stained walnut millwork designs featuring horizontal soffit ledges with cove lighting, beamed ceilings, vertical columns, and an integrated two-sided fireplace. The sculptural lines of the furniture play alongside a collection of chandeliers, including a vintage Murano glass chandelier, “reverse-painted” art-glass panels, and paintings. All are unified by a nature-derived color palette of blues, greens, and grays.

 

Entry 4

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Originally constructed in the mid-1970s as a Contemporary home with a white stucco exterior and minimal architectural detail, this home renovation was a metamorphosis in design. With traditional tastes and great vision, it was completely transformed, retaining only the original outline of the former structure. For the exterior, classic materials were selected, such as cedar shake siding, full-range limestone bricks, and true divided casement windows, while the interior rooms were fitted with large cove crown molding, tall baseboards, and oak floors. Custom-designed fireplace surrounds, paneled walls, and built-in cabinets were drafted with classic architectural details in mind, while large graphic patterns and loud bursts of color were traded for subtle textures and subdued, organic tones. Traditional in style, yet restrained in design, the home now boasts a mix of neutral upholstery, painted millwork, warm wood tones, and antique accents.

 

Entry 5

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Within the heart of a wild and undisturbed 152-acre property, the right structure must be designed and skillfully placed within the rolling meadows and old-growth timbers. The owners, designers, and builders spent countless hours studying the site, considering topography, sun angles, landmark trees, and wildlife habitats. The new four-bedroom house was constructed from materials found throughout Michigan: vertical cedar wood siding is from northern Michigan; the interior and exterior stone was reclaimed from the Harbor Springs area. There’s is a wonderful mix of rustic texture with elegant geometry throughout the structure. A man-made pond has been responsibly constructed on the north side of the driveway, to provide additional wetland area and is stocked with several species of fish. Inside and outside, there’s a sense of calm and harmony. Somehow, you get the feeling this house has always been here.

 

Entry 6

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This 900-square-foot house was reimagined into a 1,500-square-foot, modern bungalow. The roof and attic floor were removed, and the home was gutted — allowing a new L-shaped open floor plan that includes kitchen, dining, and living spaces. A gable dormer on the front of the home is open to the vaulted ceilings in the dining and living spaces, providing lots of natural light. A small addition was built on the first floor to house a new guest room with an en suite bathroom and walk-in closet, and interior space was reconfigured to incorporate a mud room, laundry room, and powder room. Upstairs, the roof was built slightly steeper, to allow a master suite to be constructed without changing the overall scale of the home. Outside, the freestanding garage has an attached screened porch and is connected to the home by a spacious patio.

 

Entry 7

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The owners decided to tear down and rebuild their family cottage, located on Lake Huron. The main design challenge was that the lake view is in the front of the home, as is the main entry. Since the main views of the lake are in the front of the home, it was important to be efficient when it came to circulation and room placement. To help maximize the view, it was almost “framed” with two large, vertical stucco columns — which also hold up the cantilevered second-floor master suite and balcony, and create a lower-level covered lanai. A 12-foot-wide sliding door faces the lake on both floors, giving a panoramic view to the outdoors. The clean lines and direct materials give the cottage a simple yet sophisticated feel, while the bold colors of the siding really pop against the clean white stucco surfaces.

 

Entry 8

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This beautifully renovated 1920s Tudor is a composition of traditional stylings and modern amenities. The design team responded to size limitations by carefully redesigning every square foot of space, to maximize its aesthetic appeal and function. Rich detailing was lavished on every materials selection, from the Pennsylvania slate roof to cabinetry, tile, stone, and fixtures, down to even the wiring and mechanical systems. Dark stained wood floors and softly painted wall panels set the tone for the detailing throughout. Hardwood cabinets, limestone and Calcutta tiles, and stone counters are the beautiful benchmarks of this well-crafted home. Lighting, audio-visual systems, temperature zones, and humidity levels are all integrated for luxurious function. The curb-side view is warm and classic; narrow side lots are manicured and the rear patio with masonry-wall benches and a built-in fire pit maximize use of the outdoor space.

 

Entry 9

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A combination of cedar shiplap siding and natural Fond-du-Lac stonework graces the exterior of this modern home. In classic Prairie School style, shallow roof pitches, natural materials, and decorative restraint work together to integrate the home into the surrounding landscape. Tongue-and-groove stained beadboard on the porch ceiling and 4-foot-wide overhangs add depth. A 9-foot-tall mahogany front door with transom and sidelights makes for an impressive entry, and coordinates with the mahogany garage doors. Floor-to-ceiling windows with divided light transoms pay homage to the Craftsman tradition and allow for sweeping views of the lake. A limestone terrace extends from the home’s lower level, further integrating the home into its surroundings, while a deck on the main level can be accessed through sliding glass doors from the family room and dining room. The energy-efficient home is as functional as it is stylish.

 

Entry 10

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The owners of this residence wanted to completely transform the new home they had recently purchased. While the home is situated on an ideal street, and on a stunning and lush lot, the homeowners believed it was lacking in character. This ultimately provided the design team with a blank slate on which they could reimagine the home for this young and active family of four. Every surface in every room was carefully thought through and reworked, so that at its completion, the home ended up brimming with history and heart, story and substance.

 

Entry 11

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The pool and cabana are the focal point of this extremely modern home, and can be seen from every room in the house. The cabana has a waterfall that flows off the roof. The exterior consists of a series of square and rectangular shapes veneered with clear cedar, smooth limestone, organic stone, and metal, connected by a floating linear roofline. The landscape is also a series of geometric shapes of concrete, wood, and metal accents, and the artificial grass requires no maintenance. Artificial grass on all of the upper-level flat roof area gives a more appealing view out of the upper windows. Very little drywall was used in the house, and there’s no trim or casings throughout. A glass floor bridge in the foyer connects the two upper-level areas.

 

Entry 12

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This home’s island site, on an all-sports lake, is just large enough for a single home connected by a 12-foot-wide bridge spanning a finger canal. It’s also located within a 100-year flood plain and wetlands restrict the footprint, which resulted in design/construction limitations. High ceilings and expansive glass windows provide most of the home with views to the lake. The massive stone fireplace, timber shelves and beams, and other natural materials give the residence a ski-lodge feel. The kitchen and dining area can accommodate a growing family with small grandchildren, and an intimate wine grotto is perfect for displaying and enjoying wine with friends and family. The master suite provides the ability to relax in a sitting room with panoramic views to the lake, and an elevator gives access to sleeping quarters for aging parents who spend the night.

 

Entry 13

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This Craftsman home showcases the use of timber beams, cedar shakes, and real stone, with lots of other details — all on a smaller, downtown lot. The design challenge was to include a first-floor master in the plan while ensuring there was adequate living space in the kitchen, great room, office, powder room, mudroom, and laundry, also all on the first floor. This home has three bedrooms upstairs, including an accessible full bath for all three rooms. Outdoors, there’s a detached two-car garage and a significantly sized rear patio. The home fits in well with the quaint area, and is within just a few minutes’ walking distance to downtown Plymouth.  

 

Entry 14

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Symmetry and traditional sensibilities drive this home’s nautical-inspired style. Flanking garages complement a grand entrance and frame a roundabout-style motor court. Centered on the home’s roofline is a traditional A-frame dormer over the front door. The walkout is covered by a paired column gallery that’s connected to the main level’s living room, dining room, and master bedroom. The foyer is centrally located and flanked to the right by a grand staircase with custom paddle balustrades, echoing the nautical theme. The kitchen island is strategically placed on axis to the living room fireplace and the dining room table, and the dining room is surrounded on three sides by large windows. To the left is the master suite, with a study, dressing room, and spa bath. The lower level features a custom-crafted boat bar; there are also bedroom suites and a bunk room.

 

Entry 15

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The focus for this home’s empty-nesters was to create a space perfecting for relaxing, enjoying the fruits of their labor, and making wonderful memories with their adult children and grandchildren. An open floor plan was essential for large communal gatherings and holiday festivities. Whether inside or out, it was important to catch the beautiful views offered by the property, and to enable people to gather, view, and speak to one another from just about anywhere. The exterior of this home was inspired by French Country design concepts and enhanced by detailing such as custom cedar brackets, handmade shutters, and roof and stone corbelling. Privacy hasn’t been forgotten, as the owners’ suite has been located in a private wing, allowing them to retreat in style while their guests enjoy the space without disturbing those needing some much-deserved quiet time!

 

Entry 16

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Natural beauty is one of the first things that come to mind on this 2.5-acre property. The owners of this French Country-inspired estate wanted to capture as much of the natural tree lines and pond area as they could, while maintaining a thoughtful look from the curb. This balance and harmony were achieved through the thoughtful use of materials, landscaping, orientation, and grading. In addition, details like custom-made plank shutters, stone corbelling, custom chimney caps, and heavily landscaped retaining walls add richness and authenticity to the exterior appearance. The interior has also been thoughtfully considered, with strategic placement of all the primary living areas to take advantage of the surrounding forest and pond. A fully accessible exterior room invites the lush surroundings inside, helping to transition guests and softening the hard edge of the natural hardscape used in the construction of this residence.

 

Entry 17

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The client wanted a comfortable family home with a clean, contemporary feel. The heavily wooded site posed some interesting siting challenges, as it was essentially in a hole nearly 25 feet below the street’s elevation. The stone and natural clear cedar-clad home, with four bedrooms and 5,300 square feet of living space, is designed around natural light, a strong visual axis, and simple spaces. Upon entering the home, one’s view is directed to the backyard through a two-story glass wall. The kitchen and dining spaces are separated with a stone-clad linear gas fireplace. The staircase is on axis with the dining room and is situated to bring natural light through the three-story stair shaft into the main body of the home. The strong linear limestone lines and low-slung roofline, trimmed in cedar plank siding, give the home a grounded, modern feel.

 

Entry 18

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There was no design challenge too big for the complete home renovation of this 1950s estate. A kitchen remodel set the tone, providing a classic and timeless feel with white shaker cabinets, polished nickel hardware, and Calcutta marble countertops. The kitchen was opened up to the family room by removing a wall and creating bar-height seating looking into the family room, making the space feel open and airy. In the master bedroom, an addition features vaulted ceilings with v-groove detail and contrasting painted beams; a complete renovation of the master bathrooms mimics the fresh and bright feel of the kitchen. The home was furnished with a velvet blue sofa, and pops of blue are featured throughout. Accents of caramel leathers and warm neutral tones, in addition to a variety of textures, make this home cozy and comfortable.

 

Entry 19

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Perched on a rolling site, this model home offers a contemporary take on Mediterranean style with its facade of Wisconsin quarry stone, carved limestone archways, deep roof overhangs with heavy carved brackets, arched windows, and full-height double doors with a black iron finish and Italianate-inspired landscaping. Upon entering, guests immediately notice the geometric wall panels, dramatic two-story ceiling, and oversized chandeliers. The reclaimed wood ceiling beams, warm furnishings, and zinc-clad fireplace all contribute to a hearth room that embraces family time. The centerpiece of the main floor is the vast, commercial-quality kitchen. The great room and formal dining room are exceptionally comfortable, while the secluded home office is a tranquil retreat. Upstairs, there are four bedroom suites and a multipurpose laundry center, plus space for doing crafts and projects. In the master suite, daring appointments — including the spa-like bath — give the space Hollywood glamour. 

 

Entry 20

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The owner of this Georgian Colonial loves color, and the use of bright, preppy shades resulted in a space that’s whimsical yet sophisticated. The colors in the floral fabric on the family room sofa were the inspirational starting point for the color palette used throughout the residence. Pattern was also instrumental when it came to incorporating multiple colors without making the spaces too busy.

 

Entry 21

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The owners of this French Normandy home wanted a rich, masculine, and hunt club-type vibe. The tall ceilings and large rooms were perfect for creating a sense of understated drama, with a nod to the homeowners’ personal style; the clients had many antiques, paintings, and trophies they wanted to highlight. Rich wood finishes and contrasting textures (velvets, leathers, and woods) provided the perfect canvas. The end result was an Old World — yet modern — home. 

 

Entry 22

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This expansive, warm, and contemporary residence is located on a large wooded country lot. The interior was designed to create a very open layout, with all of the main-level spaces within view of each other. The elegant main-level master suite and extra two-car garage were designed to occupy the private north wing of the elongated home. The interior floors are composed of large Galena polished porcelain slabs, while the sloped ceilings are clad with natural clear wood cedar to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. The exterior materials consist of horizontal cedar and mahogany siding with natural Fond-du-Lac stone bases and columns. This comfortable residence extends across its wooded site, making a significant architectural statement.

 

Entry 23

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This unique, five-level Contemporary home is embraced by its wooded site. The main level was designed to be an open layout, with the kitchen, dining room, and great room all sharing the expansive windows and view of the woods beyond. The lower level has a large indoor/outdoor pool, activities area, bar, and exercise room. The exterior and interior use of warm, precast concrete make an impressive statement, with the horizontal bands connecting all levels. Meanwhile, a combination of materials, including cedar, mahogany, and concrete, wrap the entire perimeter of the residence, including the two massive interior fireplaces and TV walls. The entire rear of the home is glass, inviting all of nature and the woods beyond into the home. The overall design residence conforms to the natural contours of the site, resulting in a truly spectacular architectural statement.

 

Entry 24

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Nestled in a secluded northern Michigan neighborhood is this beautifully crafted, 7,000-square-foot vacation home. Seven bedrooms and seven baths, including a bunk room and a fully finished basement, make this home perfect for hosting plenty of guests. A hidden pantry in the kitchen enables many cooks to be in the kitchen, and a large island opens up to an exceptional dining room and sitting room. One of the biggest challenges with this project was blending the client’s wish for traditional architecture and contemporary furnishings; the use of traditional color and the simple lines of the furniture marry the two perfectly. The multipurpose upholstery used on all the furnishings is comfortable, practical, and durable. A large porch is perfect for savoring morning coffee, afternoon tea, or a sunset dinner. Natural materials and soft, neutral textiles make this home stylish and comfortable.

 

Entry 25

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On a tree-lined street in a quaint, quiet neighborhood, this Contemporary home stands out amidst its traditional neighbors. The result of a collaboration between a seasoned builder and a talented designer, it brings a touch of modern to the street. After years of dreaming, the homeowners created their perfect nest — an airy home inspired by minimalist loft-living, measuring around 2,800 square feet. The open floor plan of the second level takes advantage of its height by looking out onto trees and overlooking a lush backyard featuring garden beds, a pool, and a relaxing patio. The first level houses necessities like mechanical and laundry rooms, a workshop, garage, elevator, a generous bathroom, and guest space that includes a murphy bed, allowing it to double as a small gym. This home packs quite a punch on its small lot.

 

Entry 26

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An infill neighborhood lot was the perfect location for this 5,400-square-foot, two-story, four-bedroom French Traditional-inspired residence. The foyer, the central hub of the home, has a dramatic, floating staircase that winds around the curved walls and serves as an intersection for the formal dining room, library, family room, and guest suite. Upon entering the space, you’re visually drawn through the home, with the formal family room serving as the anchor. The angled, coffered ceiling gives a sense of drama, while the stone fireplace provides solidity. The kitchen and family dining room extend outdoors, to a covered loggia with a fireplace. The exterior, clad in brick and limestone, has smooth-cut Indiana limestone trim detailing that highlights the home’s formal elegance. Steeply pitched roofs with slight curving at the eaves convey a romantic, European feel.

 

Entry 27

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This house, which sprawls along the edge of a golf course, has a four-car courtyard-type garage with a golf cart garage below. It features five bedrooms, including the master suite, and has a walkout that contains a two-level wine room, theater, exercise room, guest suite, kitchen/bar, and rec area. The house is a series of four pitched metal roof pods connected with flat roofs, allowing for a free-flowing floorplan. The entry is highlighted by a tower of bronze metal and a curved metal roof canopy, with custom flush light built into the columns. The two-story façade includes metal/wood walls and tilted stone walls, while the exterior seamlessly blends smooth masonry block, organic stone, metal, cedar, and glass. The kitchen/dining room opens up to a covered porch with retractable screens, for four-season use. The interior is a mix of elegant and industrial finishes and fixtures.

 

Entry 28

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This European Tuscan villa presents an aura of enduring beauty and permanence. Attention to authentic Old-World European detailing is interwoven throughout the blend of spacious and intimate spaces. Courtyard walls of rugged Cortona fieldstone define quaint areas that replicate the atmosphere of European village squares; a porte-cochere, with flanking arcades, connects the entry courtyard to an inner motor-courtyard. Extensive covered loggias and open-air terraces, accessed from a succession of French doors, create a seamless interconnectedness between the interior and exterior spaces. The home features many country-villa-type spaces, including a chef's kitchen, stone wine room, gracious stone entry hall with a sweeping stairway, a charming mud hall, and large dining and gathering spaces. The home also features five bedrooms, “his” library with a second-story overlook wraparound balcony and reading loft, “her” art studio loft, and an indoor pool.

 

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