A sophisticated condo offers simplicity and style
July 15, 2009
Phoenix Home and Garden
It was 2005 and Kim Alber was ready for a change. For years she had lived in a 2,600-square-foot house in Ahwatukee, Arizona. But now she wanted to simplify her life and find a smaller place to live.
"I was tired of suburbia," she recalls. "My home was Traditional in style, and I wanted urban living." Alber soon found what she was looking for in the yet-unbuilt Optima Camelview Village in Scottsdale. Designed by famed architect David Hovey, the glass-and-steel condos feature terraced and rooftop gardens.
"I'd had my eye on that project for a while," Alber admits, "and the units were going fast." So when one came available, she jumped on it. Enthused about the change, Alber had to wait 27 months before her place was move-in ready. In the meantime, she purged herself of unnecessary belongings and sold her house completely furnished. "I took very little with me," she remarks. "I let go of a lot of stuff."
Based on a recommendation from a friend, she hired interior designer Christopher K. Coffin to design her condo. "Kim's home is in an architecturally Contemporary building, and we wanted to bring the theme inside without it begin cold and predictable," Coffin explains.
Working solely off the building's blueprint, the pair purchased all of the furnishing before Alber even stepped inside her new space. "We chose furniture that is interesting from a design standpoint and pieces that are inviting," notes Coffin. "Designing off drawings is the best way to lay out rooms and get the scale right."
Located on the fifth floor, the home is finished in a neutral palette that does not interfere with the art, furniture or the views, according to the designer. The rooms are all painted in Dunn-Edwards Cottage White, with the exception of the master bedroom, which has walls upholstered in a natural-color linen. Dark kitchen and bathroom cabinets and dark-stained wood floors provide continuity and contrast in the three-bedroom, two-bath condo that lives larger than its 1,867 square feet.
With floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto her patio, as well as neighboring terraces laden with heat-loving flora, the light-filled home offers panoramic views. "I love being able to look out and see so much," she remarks. "Sometimes I feel like I live in a treehouse."
And now, she says, life is a little less complicated, in an environment that is both serene and nurturing.