Three leading Phoenix designers recently shared their views and insights on design trends in real estate. Today’s interior design, whether for a restaurant, corporate office or residential space, is moving toward mother nature and away from Tuscany. That’s according to Don Carstens, KT Tamm and Ernesto Garcia, who all participated as presenters at the Design Trends Event held by the Greater Phoenix Chapter of the Asian Real Estate Agent Association (AREAA) earlier this month. Landmark Title was a sponsor of the event that hosted nearly 100 members of the commercial and residential real estate community. Here’s what they say are some of the leading design trends in real estate right now.
Design is going natural and minimalist
Hospitality designer, Don Carstens created Maestro City Hall’s “opulent comfort” and the look of several other well-known restaurants around the country. Overall, he sees design getting back to natural elements and re-using materials. Wood and stone are dominating over manufactured metal, while glass and ceramics are being used as subtle accents. Carstens says harder, metallic materials are giving way to wood paneling and the use of renewable materials as the hospitality industry increasingly commits to being eco-friendly.
Carstens states, “We are also seeing minimalist design, with cleaner lines, less wall hangings and simple vs luxurious furniture. The idea is that less is more if it’s going to endure.”
Not just a pretty face: beauty with function
Another design trend is beauty with function. Carstens points to the acoustical ceiling in the Mariposa Grill in Sedona. He incorporated sound-proofing materials into the style and design of the restaurant from the get-go. The result is an acoustical ceiling that flows seamlessly with the interior design but allows patrons to hear each other’s conversations.
Blurring the lines: outdoors comes in, indoors goes out
The great outdoors is coming inside. Landscaping elements are finding their way into interior design. In other words—plants. Plants hanging over bars, ivy covering walls—you get the idea.
Residential designer KT Tamm sees a similar trend in residential projects. The move is toward creating spaces that blur the line between the indoors and outdoors. That means creating outdoor spaces that feel more like a living room and designing indoor spaces with large windows, to allow more natural lighting and interior landscaping.
Remodeling vs. new construction
Remodeling is also trending over new construction. Rather than knocking down existing buildings, more people are choosing to remodel within the existing space. There is an increasing need for special function rooms as adult children bring home aging parents. Designers are seeing a move toward construction of multigenerational rooms, wings and guest houses.
Homes are getting smarter
Homes are not just getting bigger, Tamm says that from here on out, homes are getting smarter with voice and digital controls . Look for hands free, preset water and temperature controls. Lighting systems are getting smarter too, as fixtures get smaller but offer more light.
Designer Ernesto Garcia says a primary movement happening in home design is de-Tuscanizing. The Tuscan pandemic of the early 2000’s left many would-be Italian Villas in its wake. The tile roofs and rustic style trend is giving way to cleaner, brighter and more modern designs.
Leisure suits and Tuscan: OUT
Garcia jokes, “I call de-Tuscanizing the art of turning dark, needlessly textured and historically incorrect interiors into bright luminous hopeful interiors.”
Going away are the dark, warm colors of the Tuscan look and in its place are light palettes and soft greys. Garcia says today’s design trends emphasize the architectural features of the space, the use of natural light and the creation of bright, open spaces. Upper cabinets in kitchens are disappearing in favor of pantries to open up the area. Garcia echoes Tamm and Carstens, saying that the push is toward minimalist aesthetics and the use of natural materials, especially wood. Wall to wall carpeting has gone the way of leisure suits (out) and wood floors or ceramic floors that look like wood are not just the next big thing—they are the thing.
Office space trends: just like home, but cooler
Many of the design trends being seen in hospitality and residential real estate are also cropping up in corporate spaces. Office space has lost many of its walls in favor of collaborative areas. Natural materials, such as wood and plants are being used to create a “resimercial” experience—making the office feel more residential. Offices are also, like homes, getting smarter, with high tech features designed to make Millennials happy. And with the push toward remote workers, new office spaces often feature what are called “touch-down” places. These are spaces employees can utilize when they need to check in, set up a meeting, charge their computers or make some phone calls.
Landmark Title was proud to be a sponsor of AREAA’s Design Trends Event, providing an opportunity to connect and learn what’s happening in our community. Whether residential or commercial, we have the expertise to handle even the most complicated real estate transactions. For more information, visit our website or call (602)748-2800.