Addison Mizner in Palm Beach

For Joanne de Guardiola, a South End house on Lagomar Road — designed by noted society architect Addison Mizner in 1924 — presented an opportunity to own a piece of architectural history.

It also demanded a creative and extensive renovation that ended up winning the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach’s 2012 Ballinger Award, which is given annually to honor historically sensitive construction projects at large estates.

See photos here

De Guardiola, a self-described “serial renovator,” was intricately involved in what turned out to be an intricate project at the house, which she shares with her husband.

“Roberto and I bought it more than 10 years ago as a third vacation house. We’ve always loved Palm Beach and Mizner, and we renovated it with our children and our parents in mind. But now, it’s just the two of us, and we want to do a bit of downsizing,” she says.

As such, their five-bedroom, seven-bathroom home — with two half-baths and 9,714 square feet of living space, inside and out – has been offered for sale through broker Christian J. Angle of Christian Angle Real Estate for $16.95 million.

The house will be sold with a deeded oceanfront parcel, which isn’t contiguous with the main property. In all, the land measures nearly an acre.

“It’s a wonderful home for a young family,” Joanne de Guardiola says. “It has a 60-foot pool — we could sit in the cabana and watch our children play — and it’s on almost an acre, so our son could play football and soccer. It’s a great location. We have the most gorgeous stretch of beach and fabulous views.”

About a mile south of the Southern Boulevard traffic circle, the property is one house west of the Lake Worth Lagoon on a quiet cul-de-sac. The three-story home’s interiors and exteriors blend seamlessly together, a testament to the thoughtful collaboration between de Guardiola, architects Raphael Saladrigas and Leah Cohen, and the landscape team — landscape architect Mario Nievera and designer Keith Williams of Nievera Williams Design.

De Guardiola, an interior decorator, worked at the Parish-Hadley studio before opening her own firm in New York City. She recently completed refurbishing her family’s yacht, Highlander, the iconic 150-foot yacht previously owned by Malcolm Forbes.

Architect essential

The renovation project, she said, is a testament to how an architect can pinpoint problems and create solutions. But how it came together is somewhat challenging to explain.

“When we bought it,” she explains, “the inside was OK, but outside, the way the land had been chopped up was dreadful.”

She’s referring to the home’s history. Here’s the background: Mizner’s Mediterranean-style house, originally constructed for John Magee, presided over a 6-acre, ocean-to-lake lot. Magee sold it to Edith Rea, who commissioned several additions, and two years after her death in 1951, the property was subdivided into several homes.

The de Guardiolas’ home, one of the cut-up buildings, ended up occupying a sort-of a zigzag-shaped parcel. The home’s focal-point living room was tucked into a corner just a few feet from the property line, a problem that the de Guardiolas remedied by purchasing the adjoining lot.

That way, they could work in arcades, a courtyard, loggias and terraces around the home to achieve cohesiveness as well as a beautiful sense of entry.

“Raphael made the house its own entity with terraces and a covered loggia,” she notes. “It looks like it was always meant to be.”

To give a general idea of the floor plan: The foyer, gallery, media room, kitchen and dining room with an adjoining terrace courtyard are on the first floor. One approaches the home either through the gardens by the pool, or from the cul-de-sac on the home’s west side, where stairs lead to an arcade between the cabana and courtyard that culminates at the front door.

Inside, an elliptical stairway ascends to the second-floor living room, library and guest bedroom suite, with doors in the living room opening to a partially covered balcony.

Continuing up the stairway to the third floor brings one to two guest bedroom suites, and then, up a few more steps, to the master suite.

Mizner touches

Mizneresque features include French doors, Cuban-tile floors, hand-painted tiles, beamed and coffered ceilings and graceful columned archway. But the pièce de résistance is Mizner’s original – and stunning — Roaring ’20s dining room, which was repurposed at the time of the subdivision to serve as the living room.

“Its proportions are perfection,”de Guardiola says, “as well as its original folded-linen paneling, which we took down and restored; the Cuban tile floor; the oversized Mizner fireplace; its 14-foot ceilings, and its views over Lake Worth are wonderful. It’s a beautiful room.”

The home’s captures attractive views from most rooms, but from the third-floor master bedroom, the vistas are spectacular. “You can see all the way down the coast.”

As a point of inspiration, she refers to Mizner’s charming vias off of Worth Avenue. Her house, she says, captures a similar feeling, with its brick walkways, covered areas, courtyard and terraces.

“I love Mizner’s structures, the way he beautifully blended interiors and exteriors. We used his original designs as our guiding light,” she says. “He got his architecture right, and his rooms are well proportioned with graciousness and warmth.”

– Written for Palm Beach Daily News. Read the article here

Not the yacht owned by Johnny Depp

But Johnny Depp would probably like it

If like Johnny Depp, you share a similar eye for beauty when it comes to yachts (not pirate ships), here’s one that might appeal, the 160-foot Clarity, built by Bilgin that launched in April 2015 and debuted at the 2015 Ft. Lauderdale International Boat Show.

“Whenever people see a classic boat, they always assume it’s Johnny Depp’s,” said Bobby Ball, who served as owner’s engineer for Clarity’s refit (Depp’s yacht, Vajoliroja, renamed Amphitrite, by the way, was just purchased by JK Rowling).

Classic Gentlemen’s Motor Yacht

Some yacht owners, like Clarity’s, are enamored by classic gentlemen’s motor yachts of the 1930s. In addition to Amphitrite, for example, a couple others capture attention, Ball said. “Sycara IV is for sale.” The 151-foot yacht was built by Burger in 2009. And while Clarity was not based on any specific classic yacht, Nero was a point of inspiration, though Nero, built by Corsair Yachts in 2008 is 295 feet and Clarity’s owner was looking for something smaller.

Clarity’s owner, “a British gentleman who lives in the Bahamas, went to Istanbul in 2014 looking to build a boat,” Ball explained. “He wanted something different; he was tired of big white-triangle-shaped boats, that when you pull in to the marina, there are four more tied up just like it.”

Originally, though, the owner had in mind a more modern boat, but when he saw Clarity, which was already 60-percent completed at the time, he just fell in love with it, Ball said.

After buying it, the owner did make quite a few improvements, which is when Ball got involved, fine-tuning lines, and changing configurations.

“Part of my inspiration came from the experience I have working on boats. I wanted functional, but at the same time, I tried to make it look good,” Ball said.

For the first couple of months on the job, Ball went backwards, undoing some of the work already completed.

“The original crew quarters was in the bow, forward of the superstructure and master stateroom. We moved the crew aft on the lower deck.

“We cut the superstructure on the main deck, extending it two meters. When we did that, the master stateroom could absorb the crew area, which became the master head.

That translates to a split-plan master stateroom, with the bedroom and office on the main deck, and the bathroom on the lower deck. Also on the main deck are the salon and galley.

This new configuration allowed for two new entrances to the crew area: one from the galley and the other from the guest corridor. Originally the only access to the crew quarters was through a foredeck hatch.

On the upper deck is the pilothouse, captain’s cabin, and an upper salon with double doors that completely open to the aft deck where there is a bar, lounge area and day head.

On the lower deck, in addition to crew quarters, are three guest staterooms and a full-beam VIP stateroom. As such, the yacht can take ten passengers in five cabins, and there are crew quarters for eight.

“The yacht had really beautiful lines, but I was shooting to have great spaces to entertain. In addition to the bar on the upper salon deck, we opened that salon up. Also, we wanted a lot of great observation areas, so forward, there’s a seating area, and keeping the side profile looking nice, we kept low seating up there with sun beds, but we made sure it was still a full walk-around so people would be comfortable. To enjoy the view”

Interior decoration, fabrics and furniture designs was done by Christine Coffey of Coffey Park Design, Portsmouth R.I., and Bilgin manufactured the cabinetry and most of the furniture,” Ball said. “You’ll see a lot of dark satin mahogany woodwork and there’s zero gold on this boat. It’s all polished chrome and stainless steel. We wanted bright and shiny, and even though it appears to be an old boat, we wanted crisp rather than gold which we felt aged the boat.”

They also used beautiful local marbles. For example, “the forward salon wall by the dining table is back-lit agate and looks like sliced geodes, and we tied that in with the bar top on the bridge deck,” Ball said.

Mechanically, Clarity has two 700 hp C18 Caterpillars, a low fuel burn of 25 gallons an hour, and a full-displacement hull with a bulbous bow. The yacht cruises at 10 knots with top speed of 14 knots.

It has two Koehler 50 KW three-phase generators, an 1,800-gallon-per-day water maker, Echomar type 2 waste treatment system and silver ion water sterilization system, and hydro-marine hydraulic systems for the wenches. Interior galley equipment is all stainless-steel by Seamans.

Clarity is the second yacht in Bilgin’s Classic 160 series, featuring a stylized funnel, mast and bowsprit. The first, M&M (renamed Timeless) was launched in 2012. Clarity’s owner enjoyed the building process and wants to build another, possibly a little larger yacht. Clarity is offered for sale, $17.9 million through International Yacht Collection. Call Katya Jaimes at 646-369-4562.

Click here for the shorter version at the Palm Beach Daily News