23 Mar The Townhouse on Gardenia
A Townhouse on Gardenia
We acquired this townhouse in November, and we knew right away that we’d have our work cut out for us! Though cosmetically this property was in rough shape, we knew that it held a lot of potential. The original floor plan held two bedrooms and two full bathrooms, a great open kitchen/living area, and lots of funky features. The townhouse was built in the 1970’s, and some parts were totally original — there was wood panelling on virtually every wall, which was an easy fix, but there were also some very fun quirky pieces! Right in the middle of the townhouse was an atrium with a staircase that led up to a rooftop deck, and the wood burning fireplace — no longer allowed in homes built after the 1980’s or so — created a great focal point to the main living area.
First thing’s first: the kitchen. Luckily, the kitchen didn’t need any structural improvements. It was already open to the main living area and there was even a great wooden beam framing the kitchen that we were able to keep! New cabinet doors, stainless steel appliances, a wine fridge, along with new plumbing and electrical were a must, here. We also extended the kitchen island countertop about 6 inches into the living area to allow for bar-top seating, because, why not?
See that beam across the top? Totally original. It’s always a bonus to keep just a little bit of the original character of a home during a full reno like this.
Functionality is key, and since there isn’t a true dining room or breakfast nook, the additional bar seating is a huge plus here. It really gives the opportunity to truly maximize the space available.
We considered keeping all of the wood panelling and simply refinishing with a clean coat of paint, but ultimately decided that this wouldn’t have been the right look for the townhouse. So, off went the wood panelling and on went new drywall and a crisp coat of grey to blend in with that great wood tile flooring. Even though there’s a great amount of natural light here, several new canned LED lights were installed to add to brighten the space and really make all of the details pop. The little wet bar area got a good update with the granite countertop and new plumbing. After all was said and done, we were able to take a dark, dingy space and transform it into a bright, inviting living area that anyone would be proud to spend time in.
Now, this is where things got interesting. The fireplace got a major face-lift with a reclaimed wood mantle, and a white stacked stone face to really make a statement. The vaulted ceiling was the only space we left the wood panelling, just for added interest, and finished with several coats of a clean white paint. The awkward coat closet to the right of the fireplace was opened up to create a separate entry way into the master suite; this allowed us to create a true split floor plan, and actually add an additional bedroom behind the atrium in the process.
The bathroom got a complete remodel, including new plumbing and lighting. A new vanity with a large sink basin was installed, and large-cut white subway tile was installed in the shower. The dark grey grout really makes that tile pop! A strip of accent glass tile through the shower adds interest.
Some important structural updates went into the master suite. Most importantly, we opened up a new entry from the main living area, while still allowing the room to be set back to avoid any noise. The master bathroom was also extended to create a more spacious shower room.
We laid a white hexagon-shaped penny tile with the grey grout throughout the master bath flooring, and then carried through the same large subway tile up the shower. The large walk in closet was refinished with new lighting installed.
The atrium has access through the main living area and the third bedroom, and was given new rock and low-light plants. The staircase to the rooftop deck was also repainted to black to keep a clean, sharp look.
To finish it all off, we were able to transform the backyard patio space into a wonderful outdoor area by laying new pavers, adding a new coat of paint to the walls, updating the gate, and then a few well-placed plants to keep things fresh.
Bryce, our partner Andrew, and I had an amazing time with our cute Townhouse on Gardenia! As always, we hope the new owner will be happy here for years to come.