Seaside Retreat - The Bend Magazine

Seaside Retreat

Transformed from dated eighties to modern and sleek, this island home is the perfect getaway.

Words by: Jaqueline Gonzales  Photos by: Jason Page

Michael and Tina Morris’s gorgeous, two story, island home is a true Gulf Coast treasure. The home once was featured on House Hunters, but the carpeting and overall 1980’s vibe turned off the prospective buyers. However, when the Morris family discovered the home in May 2017, it took Tina only five minutes to know she had found her dream vacation home—and new project.

Natural beauty comes to the forefront in the dramatic entrance, reminiscent of the tropical paradise that is North Padre Island. The muted pink synthetic stucco has been replaced with sturdier classic stucco in a warm Aztec Gold shade. Sophistication abounds in the open entryway, welcoming visitors with large picturesque windows and a glorious view of the canals.

The winding staircase catches your eye as you bask in the beauty of the ethereal 22’ ceilings, complete with a cylinder chandelier. Follow the stairs to the bedrooms, which are meticulously decorated to evoke a light yet inviting coastal feel. In order to achieve this effect, Tina combined fresh, crisp white colors with pops of ocean blue and coastal décor.

Instead of removing the 80’s style sunken bar, Tina and Michael modernized it to add nostalgia and entertainment value—not to mention the view of the sunset from here persuaded them. A pool table in the formal dining room enhances the entertainment lineup. A linear chandelier casts the game area in a warm glow and similar to the orb chandelier located at the opening  

The large gourmet kitchen, once covered in granite and marred by damaged walls, now features white cabinetry and plenty of sunlight, giving off a pleasant ocean front vibe. The necessary renovations allowed the Morris family to install the type of appliances they wanted and design the kitchen to their liking.

The marriage between ocean blue, teal, and crisp whites continues in the living room area. Shells, pelican statues, and glass fishing buoys in shades of ocean blue and teal fill the white shelving that flanks a wall-mounted 75-inch television and a fireplace.  The pelican statues lend an especially nice touch to the décor since these popular shorebirds frequently join in on the relaxing views from the Morris home.

The home did not always have a fresh, crisp, and modern vibe. Tina made many renovations to the home for the perfect Morris touch. One of her favorite changes was maximizing the view of her home. She felt that with such incredible surroundings, why not let the view take the forefront and keep the decorations to a minimum. What better way to enjoy the view than through windows? Several walls were turned into windows, making a perfect use of lighting while focusing on the waterfront views from all bedrooms, living and dining areas. She also took safety measures and replaced the older flimsy windows with hurricane impact PGT windows. Luckily, this addition came in handy as Hurricane Harvey hit shortly after her renovations were complete.  

The aesthetics in the Morris home continue to satisfy as guests easily transition from a casual gathering area to an alfresco setting. Outside, guests are treated to a large private balcony with gorgeous views of the wetlands and ski canal. The multi-level deck, including a covered pool, offers plenty of areas for guests to relax and enjoy the sunsets and warm breezes. In addition, the deck offers easy access to their boat. This covered outdoor area allows Tina and Michael to get into vacation mode, relax, and gaze at a magnificent sunset after a long workweek.

The piece de resistance is the purple and gold Louisiana State University flag, proudly flying on the deck. Being both Louisiana natives and LSU alumni, Tina and Michael agree that this flag adds the perfect finishing touch to the little island getaway, commonly known as “The Morris Fishing Shack.”

Whether Tina and Michael are up for entertaining friends and family or simply relaxing, their customized island home is an excellent place to be!