Lifestyle Design : A Weekend Retreat in Old Naples

Bucklebury Homes is a design team with a mission — to update Old Naples one home at a time. The national firm, with showrooms in Naples and Chicago, has done more than update this 2,500 square foot, three-story town home on 2nd Street South; they have transformed it. With a beautiful residence in the outer suburbs of Naples, Kevin and Heather Claes’ client wanted a weekend retreat. “Our client didn’t want to fight traffic to get to the beach,” says Heather. “They just wanted a different environment to relax and feel comfortable in, something that was light and beachy, fresh and transitional.”

Kevin adds that what their client wanted was to “cut this showroom out of this building and put it in my home,” a reaction that many homeowners have when they visit Bucklebury’s whole-house showroom that highlights designing by lifestyle. “We coupled great interior design with architectural elements in this home,” continues Kevin. “This home is not just tall ceilings and a lot of drywall; there is a constant excitement throughout the space. It’s full of details, but not overwhelmed by them. The home has a lot of character now, a clean, crisp look. It’s not your typical shades of gray interior.”

Everything in the home was custom designed and built by Bucklebury or sourced through their national network. “Bucklebury is an experienced design/build firm,” explains Kevin. “We can take your vision and build it from the ground up, or work within the footprint of your existing home to breathe new life into it.”


Double bay windows afford extra seating and storage space in the dining area and adjacent kitchen. The front panels are dressed up with a custom, transitional wainscot treatment. Wide painted molding creates a grid pattern on the wall that mimics the coffered ceiling. A canvas chandelier trimmed in leather illuminates the space. The unique design casts a warm glow over the dining table, which is a gray mahogany slab top resting on a stainless steel wire cut base. A curved bench seat in soft gray leather matches two of the side chairs while twin seats covered in creamy white leather grace the ends.


More than any other room in this home, the kitchen highlights the customization of the Bucklebury brand. The unique cabinet door style was created by framing the doors in weathered wood. The same stain is applied to the shutters that back the cabinets and to the trim on the natural stone-topped kitchen island. A steel-encased pendant lamp hangs above it, adding a nautical element. Large format textured Italian porcelain tile replicates the movement and waves of the ocean. Most notable for its absence is the refrigerator.


Serene gray walls and a cerused finish on the Legno Bastone Wide Plank Flooring white oak hardwood floors, installed throughout the home and sourced through Naples Flooring Company, help establish the beach vibe. “We saw the potential of expansive living space in the footprint of the home,” explains Kevin. “So we restructured the staircase and opened the walls.” A coffered ceiling of weathered cypress insets reminiscent of boardwalk planks, trimmed in glossy white, unites the living, dining and kitchen areas. Custom built cabinetry from the Bucklebury studio in Chicago creates a media wall topped by illuminated recesses. The occasional tables are a variety of shapes and sizes and are a mixture of metal, glass, wood, and mosaic tile.


 The grid patterned wall treatment carries onto the ceiling of the master bedroom where the colors are reversed, and mirrored inserts on the headboard wall add needed depth to the room. The fully upholstered bed with tufted headboard brings the color of sand into the palette; a sisal rug contributes texture to the vignette. A club chair covered in soft gray mohair is accented by a glass and metal hexagonal side table.


The adjoining master bath is an unlikely counterpart to the nubby textures and weathered wood of the master bedroom. Cool, sleek, honed limestone covers the floor and encases the tub. The walls and ceiling inset shimmer with mother-of-pearl mosaic tiles. Central to the glamour of this bath is a sparkling beaded crystal chandelier.


A thick honed marble countertop and undermount sink give this guest bath a luxurious feel. The touch-latched drawer fronts on the floating vanity are custom-designed as showcases for sand and sea stars. Carrera marble lines the walls, topped with a fish print wallcovering. The circular mirror frame is made from reclaimed marine wood with a cerused finish.


This guest room pays homage to the nearby Gulf of Mexico with its ship-to-shore look. The Bucklebury team meticulously installed planks above the wainscoting, giving them a baby-soft glossy white finish. The wainscoting itself is stripes of navy and cream porcelain tile with a linen finish. The drapes by Ralph Lauren are imprinted with line drawings of sailboats. The headboard, crafted from actual oars, steals the show with its colorful authenticity.


Signs identifying the streets bordering this tiny townhouse in Old Naples are a clue to its legendary location just two blocks from the beach where Gulfshore Boulevard turns a corner onto 5th Avenue South. The three-story walnut stairway rises to become a glass-enclosed passage set flush against sandblasted gray and taupe stone applied in a stacked brick pattern. The sea urchin lighting fixture is art imitating nature, drawing its strength from steel rods spaced around the orb like the creature’s spines they resemble.



Written by Ginny Cooper

Photography by Giovanni Photography


Bucklebury Home
331 5th Avenue South
Naples, FL 34102


Legno Bastone Wide Plank Flooring
2684 Horseshoe Drive South
Naples, FL 34104


Naples Flooring Company
900 5th Avenue South
Naples, FL 34102

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