Mansion 20,000 Square Foot
a total of 20,000 square feet
The couple from Brentwood, California, who were relocating to Greenwich, Connecticut, first demanded “bright and white” for their new East Coast house. However, their bicoastal interior designer, Mike Moser, put them straight: “It’s a conventional Greenwich house,” he says. “It must be left white or it would appear incomplete. It needs additional layers.”
Given the scale of the land — a total of 20,000 square feet — this necessitated many additional layers, but with an eye toward the homeowners’ initial desire to create a home with a restricted and refined color scheme. The fake Tudor Moser, with its occasionally Hogwarts-like features, has passed through several hands over its 120-year existence.
It has to be vertically and horizontally aligned
The residence required some renovations for its new occupants, hedge fund manager Alicia Tranen, her husband, and their three children. (“The family hops between Brentwood and Greenwich today, and I think that one-foot-in-both-coasts aesthetic is captured here,” Moser adds.) Tranen notes that even though the property is majestic, she wanted every place to seem “fun, easygoing, and informal”
The “Mary Poppins-like” oversized pendant in the dining area is an example. Moser mentions the den as another example: “They really let me go for it. That is the enjoyable part of the task, but it wasn’t simple, especially when it came to the plaid wallcoverings in that room. Moser recalls, “We cemented it over the moldings, almost as if it were vacuum-sealed.” It has to be vertically and horizontally aligned. “Never again,” said the installation.”
We had a fixed budget and concentrated on value
However, the task at hand did not consist solely of entertaining bits and games. In the end, the family desired the property to be completely restored (including a kitchen gut and a new master bedroom suite) and furnished within eight months—during COVID. “I love her to death, but by the grace of God, I almost died,” Moser joked about the project and schedule. Given Tranen’s financial acumen, he continues, “We had a fixed budget and concentrated on value.”
This resulted in environments that harmoniously combine form and function. Moser maintained the home’s architectural integrity by renovating the flooring, adding new windows, and upgrading the moldings. He added wallpaper to rooms such as the den and powder room for added coziness, combined contemporary decor with found furnishings (including many ’70s French rattan pieces), and relied on more carefree touches (such as alabaster shell sconces and braided molding) to ensure that the family’s home felt unique.
reducing its size
Although the stately exterior was left unaltered, the large entry was a challenge due to its low ceilings and expansiveness. The primary bathroom was another tricky huge place. What is the solution? Make it more intimate by reducing its size. Perhaps it is precisely this sort of subtle yet unexpected change that makes the house truly stand out. Moser reflects, “The home is grand but still feels warm and youthful.”
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