Coastal Home Inspired by Owner's Lifetime on the Water

Coastal Home Inspired by Owner’s Lifetime on the Water

A nautical haven, a lifetime spent near the water inspired this homeowner to envision and build the coastal home of her dreams.

The living area of this coastal home reflects the airy nature of the area.

Photography by Jason Page

During the height of the COVID quarantine, this Padre Island homeowner felt the urge to move into a bigger space. “Since my husband passed away, it’s mostly my daughter, her husband and my grandsons that come to stay with me. I wanted a space for us to gather,” she said.

The homeowner found the perfect residence, but it needed work to make it suit her style and needs. That’s why she hired Diane McGroarty of Diana Homes, Inc. as her general contractor. “[McGroarty] and her team were very easy to work with and are very detail-oriented,” said the homeowner. “She was helpful in knowing how to reconstruct the space.”

The coastal home features many found pieces from over time, like this vintage porthole from a disused ship.
Among many found pieces the homeowner collected over the design process is a vintage porthole from a disused ship. By replacing a simple round window, the stairwell now has a special accent.

Having designed her three previous homes herself, the homeowner was determined to make this one special. “I wanted to keep the design nautical and coastal. I’m close to the beach so I wanted to incorporate all those features. I’m a big nature person, so I wanted to bring in the natural elements.”

Those organic details are prevalent throughout the home. The stained pine walls in the kitchen, family room, stairwell and bedrooms, as well as the river rock shower walls in the bathrooms, hone in on the natural concept. The live-edge shelving in the kitchen, handmade by McGroarty’s team, brings warmth to the space and ties in with the pine walls and beam. The kitchen also features natural-edge subway tile and Cambria Portrush quartz countertops. The blue veining in the quartz mimics the movement of the waves, and ties in nicely with the Harbor Blue base cabinets.

The nautical concept continues into the family room, which features a vaulted shiplap ceiling with a beautiful beam detail and a pine feature wall. The upstairs gathering space was created when the homeowner closed in the previous downstairs double-height living space.

The homeowner also remodeled the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms to accommodate her family. “I wanted to make a family room upstairs, so my family has a place to stay,” she said. There are three bedrooms upstairs, each with its own theme: One room is sailing, one is surfing and the other is oriented around the sea. This aspect of the home is rather special to the homeowner, as it is centered around providing space for those she loves most. “Even my grandson helped pick out some things for each bedroom upstairs,” she said. “He has the surf room and helped choose some of the light fixtures [in there].”

Pine accent walls throughout the home give the spaces warmth, natural texture and cohesion.

Many of the house’s items were collected by the homeowner over the years. “My late husband and I were sailors,” she said, “so a lot of the design and items I had previously were trophies from sailboat racing. Over the six months we were remodeling, I also looked for different found pieces.”

The porthole window in the stairwell is one of these found pieces, as is the surfboard in one of the bedrooms. Several other items were made from reclaimed wood and light fixtures from salvaged ships. McGroarty and her team even fabricated a floating wood bench out of a piece of mesquite found by the homeowner, who also handmade the reclaimed wood headboard in the sailing-themed bedroom.

The homeowner is grateful to have such a meaningful place for her family and friends to gather. “I’ve had friends and neighbors come in for get-togethers. I’ve even hosted a couple of birthday parties and Christmases here. It’s the fourth place that I’ve designed over the years. I thought if it’s going to be my last one, I need to design it the right way.”

Looking for more Open House? Check out Corpus Christi Home with Heart and History or Storied Spaces: A Corpus Christi Home with Heart and History.