ORLANDO – A spectacular custom home by Phil Kean of Phil Kean Designs in Winter Park earned one of the home building industry’s highest honors last week when it captured the coveted Golden Aurora Award in the 2011 Aurora Awards design competition presented at the 33rd annual Southeast Building Conference (SEBC).

The nationally recognized awards honor builders, planners, architects, developers, designers, interior merchandisers and other housing-related professionals in a 12-state region stretching from Texas to Virginia plus the Eastern Caribbean.
Kean partnered with Evergreen Consulting and CRT Studio, Inc. to produce the 4,728-square-foot, $3 million luxury home in Winter Park that a team of independent judges deemed the best of more than 200 entries.

The contemporary home, built for empty nesters who host long-term guests, features clean lines and extensive details, plus a unique entrance and floating steps over moving water, volume spaces, and indoor-outdoor living on both its levels. The home features a theatre, library, and office/workshop.

In addition to the Golden Aurora, winners were honored for Grand Awards, Best in State, and Aurora Awards. Special awards were presented for energy-efficient construction.

Corporate sponsors of the 2011 Aurora Awards are Marvin Window and Doors; MASCO; Florida Power and Light; Gulf Power; Progress Energy; Florida Natural Gas Association; Two Trails, Inc.; HomeTeam Pest Defense; and DOW AgrioSiences.

Entry: 20-007 – BEST OF STATE FLORIDA (and Golden Aurora)
Category Name: CUSTOM HOME (One of a Kind) Over $3,000,001
Winner: Phil Kean Designs

For Project: Miwa located in Winter Park, FL
Team Members include: Phil Kean Designs; Evergreen Consulting; CRT Studio, Inc.; Harvey Smith Photography

Size of Unit: 4728
Sales Price: $3,020,000.00

This contemporary home features clean lines and extensive details, a unique entrance of floating steps over moving water, attractive focal points, great flows of volumes and spaces, and incorporates large areas of indoor/outdoor living on both levels. The challenge was to connect the main home to the existing guest house which was accomplished with a center garden and floating step walkway which mimics the main home’s entrance. The garden features a fountain, fire pit, pool, outdoor arbor dining area, and LED lighting under the floating steps. Taking aging in place into consideration, there are master suites on both levels, elevator, and garage entrance. The home’s great room and kitchen open to the lanai, summer kitchen, and garden via folding and pocketing glass doors and uses a retractable screen concealed in the lanai. When the screen is lowered, it holds up to 90% of the home’s conditioned air and keeps out insects. The 2nd floor master and exercise rooms open to balconies. The home also has a theater room, library, and office/workshop with Murphy bed. This home was built for empty nesters who have long term guests, hence the private main residence and the close but not too close guest house.

Ed Binkley, AIA, Ed Binkley Design, Winter Park, Fl”: “This contemporary home blew away the competition from start to finish” a complete package with clean lines; spectacular entrance draws in you and does not disappoint. Continuity flows throughout with style, design and merchandising each complimenting and creating a complete package.”
Nea Poole, Poole and Poole Architecture, Richmond VA: “Amazing house and barely gets into category at 3.02 million. Phenomenal entry sequence over pond with waterfall. Well executed modern elevation. Main stairs are wonderful, Family Room well done, Kitchen clean, cool, fun. Lanai is open yet very in tune with house.”

Category Name: CUSTOM HOME (One of a Kind) Over $3,000,001
Winner: Barry Sugerman Architect

For Project: Eagles Nest located in Banner Elk, NC
Team Members include: Barry Sugerman Architect; John Turchin

Size of Unit: 5500
Sales Price: $3,800,000.00

It is an understatement to call this home a Log Cabin in the Woods, although technically it is. It far surpasses anything that comes to mind when you hear those words. Located high above the city of Banner Elk, NC, this home is nested on ten acres of a 1,500 acre heavily wooded mountaintop community with aw inspiring, long range views of the city and the mountain ranges beyond. The overall density is no more then one home per 30 acres as the developer allocated a great deal of property for outdoor living such as Equestrian Center, Motor Biking, Shooting Range, Fly Fishing, Spa, Snow Mobile, BBQ Pavilions and a Library that resembles a Large tree house. Given the choice to orient the home to the east to start your day with a glorius sunrise or end with a magnificent sunset, the architect chose both by turning the Great Room on a 45% angle to capture the views in both directions. The steeply sloped lot allowed for the master suite and main living space to be at grade in the front but in the rear above grade for lighting. The home is designed so that the impressive log structure is left purposely exposed - made of huge western red cedar trees - giving the home its unique personality eliciting a WOW from the moment you enter the door. The exterior materials are tree bark siding, a pre-rusted metal roof and western red cedar tree log columns. Note that the handrails are actual tree branches since the house was designed to bring nature inside.

Category Name: RENTAL APARTMENT COMMUNITY Density of 15 or More Units Per Acre
Winner: LRK, Inc.

For Project: The Belmont located in Dallas, TX
Team Members include: LRK, Inc.; UDR, Inc.; Andres Construction; Linda Tycher & Associates; Keaton Interiors; Bernhard Associates

Size of Unit: 596 to 1623 sf
Sales Price: $1,400.00 unit rent

Centrally located near Uptown and Downtown Dallas and within walking distance of the flourishing Knox/Henderson area, this new urban community, which recently received LEED Silver certification, allows renters to live an eco-friendly lifestyle in ways that were previously only available to homeowners. Lower overall utility costs (projected at $380 - $550 a year per apartment) enable renters to offset their monthly rental expense through energy and water savings. There is also a public transit stop on-site, ride-share program, courtesy van, bicycle storage, and even a networked electric charging station for EVs that is a first in the multifamily industry. The design incorporates fresh, contemporary architecture with bold, bright colors and multiple textures. With Bennett and Belmont Avenues bisecting the site, the community achieves an urban feel. Street-side patios make the project an integral part of its urban context and wide sidewalks and lush landscaping encourage walking and add to the residential flavor. The main block has a central parking garage which is successfully incorporated into the streetscape by being stylistically “disguised” by one of the buildings and the other surrounding blocks are serviced with surface and tuck under parking structures. Encouraging a diversity of residents, the project offers a wide range of units with prices listed between $800 and $2,000 and three price levels of interior finishes. The community features studio, one bedroom and two bedroom apartments, as well as two bedroom townhomes, many with dramatic views of downtown. Amenity space totaling 7,500 square feet includes a main pool courtyard, fitness center and internet cafe. The Belmont is currently fully leased at pro forma rents.

Winner: Hnedak Bobo Group

For Project: Metro 67 Apartments located in Memphis, TN
Team Members include: Hnedak Bobo Group; DEVELOPER - EFO Residential Partners, LTD; ARCHITECT & INTERIOR ARCHITECT - Hnedak Bobo Group; GENERAL CONTRACTOR - Standard Builders Inc.; STRUCTURAL ENGINEER - Burr and Cole Consulting Engineers, Inc; MECHANICAL ENGINEER - Haltom Engineering, LLC; INvision, Inc.

Size of Unit: 248632 sq. ft. / 1013 sq.

The transformation of this historic former bank/office building (first designed by famed McKim, Meade and White) provides the downtown Memphis rental market with modern, energy-efficient, condominium-style apartments. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the building originated in 1924, then went through major additions in 1937, 1952 and 1953. Strict historic guidelines required restoration to a 1950s-era style of materials and finishes, though designers were challenged to also integrate and capitalize on the building's other unique historical interior features, as they navigated through the widely different structural systems of each building era. The square-shaped building’s dense office-oriented floor plan was transformed into a u-shape by carving an 8-story light-well into the building’s core allowing light to filter into interior units. Bank vaults located in the 20,000 sq. ft. basement were reinvented as tenant entertainment space, featuring a party room, a theater, gallery space, and a wine/coffee bar located in a former security deposit vault. An underground tunnel was reopened for sheltered access to parking across the street. The result of the renovation is a highly marketable luxury apartment building and an elevated standard of living for the downtown core.

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