Near the quiet town of Mexico Beach, Florida, the 2003 HGTV Dream Home is a comfortable retreat with sweeping views of the Panhandle's East Bay.
Exterior colors are taken from neighboring oaks, palms, and pines. "The idea was for it to blend with what's occurring naturally,"
says design consultant Linda Woodrum. Architectural guidelines encourage homes that relate to the landscape with traditional
details such as metal roofs, exposed rafter tails, and deep overhangs.
Mexico Beach, home to the HGTV Dream Home 2003, is located along the Panhandle's "Forgotten Coast," as the locals say, where
fishing communities recollect days of old. "Breaking the house into individual pieces allowed us to site it without removing
a lot of trees," says architect Randy Johnson of Urban Design Group, Inc. "It doesn't dominate the landscape."
A two-story bank of windows in the great
room offers views of East Bay. The double-insulated wood windows combine traditional style with a coated-aluminum exterior for longevity.
A sunny corner of the guest suite offers cozy chairs in patterned blues while a cool white cabinet overflows with treasures.
In the connecting hall, the monochromatic background explodes with sunflowers. The dramatic statement is tempered by the flowers'
sunny disposition. An oval-backed side chair welcomes weary visitors.
The airy guest room greets visitors with romantic fabrics and creamy hues.
Cross-back chairs surround a rectangular dining table, guarding a dramatic display of delicate orchids. The dining set boasts fluted legs with carved rosettes in a linen finish. On the table, antique candlesticks lift pillar candles to chandelier height.
Comfortable woven furniture graces the master suite and its private porch. Inside, board-and-batten walls surround the brick
fireplace. Linda hung mirrored sconces at eye level in lieu of a mantel.
Architectural delights abound in the master suite, where sliding shutters above the queen-sized bed, enveloped in sumptuous
fabrics, open to the pristine master bathroom beyond.
Crisp white linens soften angular glass and brushed metal fixtures in the master bathroom.
In the outdoor seating area, a dock points to an unspoiled horizon and sea breezes are a tactile reminder of the unparalelled
In the indoor potting room, a solid-surface countertop holds a restaurant-style sink, faucet, and overhead sprayer. "This
is an industrial-strength room for serious gardeners," says Linda.
Orchids, perhaps nature's most fickle flower, thrive in the comfort of the greenhouse and the convenience of a neighboring
From the master suite's porch, a crushed seashell path leads to a small deck with its own footed bathtub and freestanding
shower. Landscape architect Patrick Hodges sited the deck at an angle to capture water vistas. "I found a spot in the vegetation
with a natural opening," he says.