With Dramatic Accents, A Bold Arizona Escape Nods To The Colors Of The Region


Drake and Caleb Anderson’s clients fell in love with a dramatic Southern Cross onyx from Cactus Stone & Tile, which builder Rod Cullum fabricated into a double-height fireplace that drove the design for the rest of the home.

Design sectional and a coffee table by Stefan Bishop form the central seating area in the great room. The loft, says architect Mark Candelaria, “serves more like a den or retreat space.” In it hangs the triptych Indian Summer – Homage to Bonnard by Robert Kushner.

The Charles H. Beckley, Inc. daybed in the den enable the space to double as a guest room for grandchildren. On the wall above hangs Gordon Cheung’s 2015 Minotaur series. A Lorin Marsh armchair paired with a custom desk fabricated by New Day Woodwork, Inc. in Glendale, New York, carves out a workspace.

The custom dining table by Drake/Anderson is a centerpiece itself, with a top application by Officina Coppola inset on a bronze metal base. The Brunschwig & Fils herringbone tweed on the Holly Hunt dining chairs features many of the home’s bold colors. “It acts as a neutral in the space,” says Drake.

At the top of the stair built by Cullum Homes, a custom Galapagos cluster chandelier by Tuell and Reynolds, purchased at The Bright Group, visually connects to the blackened steel railing, while L’Objet earthenware cacti sculptures reference the desert environs.

Celadon cabinetry by Downsview Kitchens and the mandarin orange leather-wrapped panels on the Sub-Zero refrigerator threads the great room’s palette into the facing kitchen. A mix of materials includes quartz for the backsplash and countertops and African river marble on the island, all from Cactus Stone & Tile.

Influenced by the client’s love of the Beverly Hills Hotel’s wallpaper, the bedroom in the casita is covered in a banana-leaf print from Designer Wallcoverings. The custom king bed by Charles H. Beckley, Inc. is dressed in linens from E. Braun & Co. and upholstered in a dove shade by Perennials.

The emerald green Gubi chair pulls up to a built-in desk. Ardy’s Custom Workshop fabricated the Roman shades in a striped Alicudi fabric.

In the master bath, the shower features a backlit floating wall of highly figured coastal dream onyx from Cactus Stone & Tile. The glass mosaic wall tile is from Sicis’ Colibrì collection.

Goodall Custom Cabinetry & Millwork in Glendale built the vanities, which feature white baked enamel cabinet pulls from DLV Designs in Brooklyn, New York, a nod to the glass-column sconces by Jonathan Browning from The Bright Group.

“With the glass pocket doors open, the pool and decking feel as though they are part of the indoor space, for a luxurious and beautiful focal point,” notes landscape designer Jim Lucas. A splashy coral print by Porter Teleo for Perennials covers the David Sutherland lounge chairs.

Says architect Vivian Ayala of the outdoor shower, “They wanted their master bath to have that indoor-outdoor access, so it was important to place their master bath toward the outdoors.” A mural on the shower wall, by CH Mosaic, Inc. in New York, depicts a desert scene.

When designers Jamie Drake and Caleb Anderson began planning the interiors for a longtime client’s second home in Paradise Valley, Arizona, they were confident they had a strong sense of the residents’ taste, which had always leaned toward elegant neutrals. “After 20 years,” says Drake, “we have a dialogue.”

Occasionally, however, people surprise you—as their clients did when the designers brought them to stone yards in Phoenix during the planning stages. “They were attracted to very vibrant stones, much to my surprise,” Drake says. One grand slab of marble in particular, in shades of tangerine and green, was “extraordinarily dramatic” and ended up as the exquisitely high surround for the fireplace. It also became the departure point for the airy, five-bedroom home that maximizes views of Camelback Mountain and desert environs.

But the setting doesn’t just offer stunning vistas. The home, which was built on two adjacent lots situated on a corner, provided a “backyard that was lush enough to enjoy with their family,” says architect Vivian Ayala, who, with partner Mark Candelaria, did the architectural designs. Working with builder Rod Cullum, they created an open plan on the ground floor, taking advantage of the surroundings by installing sliding glass doors in the double-height great room that center on indoor-outdoor living.

With the dramatic fireplace and wide-open design setting the stage, Drake and Anderson knew the rest of the finishes needed to rise to the occasion. “Part of this project, as in all of ours,” explains Drake, “is complexity of materials. It’s innate in both Caleb and me to create things that are unique and unusual, and we do that through the use of surprising combinations.”

Picking up on the palette of the 20-foot fireplace surround, the marble of the kitchen island features the same shades but in darker tones and a more concentrated pattern. The designers then added a striking mix of quartz, quartzite, Corian, enameled steel, lacquer and a leather-wrapped refrigerator door. Emerald green marble in the adjacent powder room ups the drama factor. Celadon porcelain pavers cover the main floor throughout, grounding the space with a fresh neutral.

When it came to furnishings, Drake and Anderson listened to the residents’ request for the home to feel like an Arizona residence, one that reflected hot days and cool nights. Says Drake, “They wanted sort of a Southwest color story, but I think one can be poetic with those directions. It can be derived from the palette, but in its own unique way.”

They pulled in the colors of the regions: the vibrant red blossoms of the Indian paintbrush plant, the blue-greens of faded turquoise, and the fiery oranges of sunrises and sunsets. A large celadon silk-and-wool rug with orange accents anchors the soaring great room with “a beautiful tonality enhanced by the way the light picks up on the silk,” notes Drake, while a softly structured sectional in the same pastel hue delineates the living area from the kitchen and nearby dining area. A sculptural low table—a series of stacked shapes made by Stefan Bishop of Monterey pine, —recalls the organic sensibility of the rugged mountain as well as the stepping stones alongside the pool, part of the landscape design by Jim Lucas. Orange accents—from throw pillows to the lively landscape triptych visible on the overlooking loft—inject energy through these main living areas, while the master suite is dressed in the quieter tones of sage, celery, mint and rust, and where textures range from silk to leather to onyx.

When it came to art, the 20-year relationship yielded another advantage—Drake and Anderson have an innate understanding of the clients’ taste and curated a collection that they knew would work well with both their preferences and the design. On a wall in the dining area, illuminated by plentiful outdoor light from the sliding glass doors, a commanding abstract painting by Dan Christensen features a circular shape echoed by the placement of a lit orb porcelain sculpture by Barnaby Barford at the center of the great room.

That sense of surprise and visual interplay was an objective for Drake and Anderson at the outset, a kind of joy that the residents entrust in interior designers to bring to their space. To this day, the pair still sees fresh connections. “Caleb and I enjoy spaces that continue to delight the eye beyond the initial impression,” says Drake, “so while you’re in the space you continue to discover interesting juxtaposition between things.”