A Home Designed Straight from a Novel


Light Reading SoCal

French-inspired architecture and tailored design elements spin a thoughtful tale of resort-like ease for a Newport Coast home.

Linking the floors of the home is a graceful spiral staircase, custom-designed with a black-steel rail and crowned by a skylight. A feat of complex engineering, the structure posed an exciting challenge for builder
Dick Crawford. “The design is an ellipse for three levels, with tight inside volute transitions that expand to quite large steps,” says Crawford. “We did several mock-ups and began the installation, then met to review progress and tweaked details, reveals and tie-in points to attain the result we wanted.” 

Elegant Neutral Palette for a Newport Coast Home

Designer Jan Turner Hering went to work on the interiors throughout this Newport Coast home with an eye on the big picture and with the help of senior design associate Maria Ulwelling. “Everything that’s a design element within the walls came out of our office. All of the interior architecture, the reflective ceilings, moldings, cabinetry, beam work, paneling,” Turner Hering points out.

Turner Hering chose an elegant neutral palette for this lounge that also serves as an extra guest room. A custom sofa in a
Kravet chenille forms a seating group with an A. Rudin chair in a Perennials fabric; beneath is a Masland carpet. The ottoman, end table and floor lamp are all by Baker, and the table lamp is from Global Views. Gracing the walls is artwork by Jen Wink Hays.

Beige Living Room with Hanging Giclee Prints

Turner Hering established a “soft and lean” color palette of tans, cream, beiges and sea-glass blue that gives a nod to the ocean visible from the home. “We wanted it to be soothing and easy on the eye,” she says. Adding a musical metaphor to the literary mix, Krantz says of Turner Hering’s vision for the interior details: “Jan picked up on the melody of the outside of the house, then harmonized the inside around it.” 

Draperies in a Kravet linen, fabricated by
Snooty Draperies, frame views from the family room, where custom sofas and lounge chairs in a Pindler fabric create a pair of seating arrangements. Underfoot is a wool rug from Unique Carpets. Concealing the television is a giclée print from CHC Art in Tampa.

Living Area with Open Views from Above

A Masland carpet brings a subtle dose of pattern and color to the living room, which includes custom lounge chairs and a sofa, all dressed in Kravet chenille, positioned around a Century Furniture coffee table. A. Rudin chairs pull up to the bar at rear.

Intimate Loggia with Pillars and Seating

The home’s exterior DNA comes via Provence, an aesthetic chosen to meet the community’s design requirements. “We had to adhere to their strict guidelines, which mandated certain architectural styles and authenticity,” says Krantz, whose French Provincial vision incorporated stucco walls, stone window surrounds, handsome shutters, a terra-cotta tile roof and covered loggias. 

Architect Richard Krantz wove ample outdoor living spaces throughout the property. On an intimate loggia, fixtures from
Lantern Masters light a seating area that features chairs by Brown Jordan, covered in Perennials fabric, and a Stone Yard table.

Olive Trees, Roses, and Sycamores Surrounding a Pool

Much of the abode’s appeal is its natural and functional flow, including the way it moves into the elegant grounds conceived by landscape architect Erik Katzmaier. “I tried to give the house a siting within the landscape and to mesh the landscape and architecture together,” says Katzmaier. To mirror the French Provincial feel of the home, he opted for plantings in a more formal style, choosing olive and citrus trees, cypress trees, boxwood and specimen arbutus—a native of southern France from the foothills of the Mediterranean. 

Brown Jordan chaises overlook a pool by Contemporary Pools and Spas. The loggia’s flush-mounted lights are from Lantern Masters. Builder Dick Crawford oversaw the sizable contingent of subcontractors carrying out the home’s old-world details.

A Family Room that Flows into an Adjacent Kitchen

The kitchen features a grandly curved island with a Calacatta marble top and barstool seating. A custom trestle table and banquette inhabit the space beneath a generous span of windows.

Sofa pillows in an AST stripe, the custom counter stools’ chenille seats and a lamp lend notes of blue. Palecek chairs face a custom dining table and a banquette wearing Perennials fabric, while a chandelier by
Murray’s Iron Works hangs above the island topped with Calacatta marble from Marbleworks. Tile from Impression in a diamond pattern defines the backsplash behind the Wolf cooktop. J.T. Finneran fabricated the cabinetry.

Box Beam Ceiling with Fireplace and Custom Mirror

Driving the choices—such as the ceilings with box-beam and reclaimed-timber details and the crown moldings—was the desire to bring “the tailored, high-end essence of a Four Seasons hotel into a warm residential setting,” the interior designer says. Furnishing the home, Turner Hering opted for what she calls “the French approach” in the ample family room, giving it a dual focus, orienting seating areas around a limestone fireplace as well as a maybe-not-so-old-world entertainment system. The room is filled with custom sofas and chairs, a textural wool rug and contemporary artwork.

The elegant box-beam ceiling crowns the living room, where, above the fireplace from Impression, a work hangs by
Adrian Lockhart. Turner Hering designed the mirror in the adjacent alcove. The table lamps, commode, side table and bench, in a Pindler fabric, are all by Baker.

Very Neutral Master Bedroom with Stainless Steel Touches

The master bedroom’s bed, in Duralee fabric, and the sofa and armchair, both in Kravet chenille, are by A. Rudin. A Flow Décor lamp stands on a Century Furniture bedside table. Adding a touch of glamour are the stainless-steel table and mercury glass lamp, both from Global Views; the drapery fabric is by Maxwell. Grounding the space is a Fabrica wool carpet.

Walking through an artfully designed home can feel akin to reading a good book: There’s a structure, a theme and, in the best work, compelling details that grab your attention and tell a captivating story as you make your way through. Looking to write an autobiography of his own, a Newport Coast client who wished for a gracious residence where his children and grandchildren could gather turned to interior designer Jan Turner Hering and architect Richard Krantz to take on the narrative. Of her part, Turner Hering says, “We took a soft contemporary approach to Richard’s classic text,” which translated into a home replete with rectilinear lines, subdued pattern and soft colors. 

Guiding Krantz’s architectural text was the owner’s request for a home inspired by his stays at luxury hotels and resorts around the world, so he crafted a bright and airy floor plan with a central courtyard, a large pool and generous outdoor living and dining areas. The lower level includes a spacious game room complete with a pinball machine and game table, as well as a wine cellar, spa and gym that manifest an on-vacation vibe. 

Though the four members of the design team all had a hand in the final story (not to mention the numerous subcontractors required to execute such a project), the home reads as the story of the client. It tells of his hopes and the lifestyle he desired, giving him a fairy-tale ending. “We created something so unique in itself,” says Turner Hering, “it’s like checking into the most glorious hotel on the coast.” 

–Linda Hayes