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Wrap up your holidays—and keep your interior estate sparkling clean—with our numerous Home Care & Storage solutions.
Shop our Bar Stools & Kitchen Furniture to find the best seats in the house, including solidly crafted wood barstools and custom upholstered barstools.
A Gracious Interior
Interiors replete with leather, stone, dark wood, and hand-selected art create gracious rooms where extended family and guests love to spend time. Hues of persimmon red, gold, chocolate brown, and sage green make up Kathy's chosen color palette. "The theme of our home is European elegance," says Kathy. Her taste runs from Old World charm to unabashedly Italian, reflecting Sam's full-blooded heritage and her half-Italian roots. The Old World feel is evidenced first by the porte cochere, and then by the yard’s several Italian travertine fountains.
The deluxe kitchen features hand-finished, hand-distressed knotty alder wood beams and a massive center island of exquisite "Juperana Arandis" granite. Use vibrant, lush Plants & Topiaries to accent such a stately backdrop.
To enter the home, a covered stairway with stone walls and wood ceiling (appreciated during winter snowstorms) leads to an arched, wrought-iron and glass front door. This opens to a circular foyer with an alder wood rotunda above a two-tier stone fountain. Here the stage is set for the rustic Italian influences seen throughout the rest of the home. A lantern chandelier brightens the foyer, all the better to view the ten or so works of art on the walls. "I tell people the foyer is our home art gallery," laughs Kathy. Other paintings, mostly of Colorado's natural beauty, are scattered throughout the home. The all-Colorado theme is interrupted by an Italian vineyard workman painted in acrylics; he keeps a close watch over activities in the kitchen. This artwork was given to Kathy by one of the interior designers she became good friends with while they collaborated on the home's furnishings.
In the Great Room, the magnificent floor-to-ceiling weathered faux stone fireplace, well-pillowed sofas, and soaring 18-foot beamed cathedral ceiling invite guests to linger. Hand-finished, hand-distressed knotty alder wood beams are also echoed in the deluxe kitchen with its massive center island of exquisite "Juperana Arandis" granite in bold, rustic colorations. "I love my granite counters. And as much as I love to cook, the big pantry is perfect," says Kathy. She gives her Viking range and Sub-Zero refrigerator a workout when she whips up feasts for her large extended family, which includes two married children and four young grandchildren who visit often. Well-stocked cabinets built into both sides of the refrigerator are designed to slide completely out of sight and testify to Kathy’s culinary prowess. Knotty alder custom-made cabinetry fills the kitchen. To offset the wood look, cabinets on the island were hand-finished with a custom-aged cream color involving a fastidious five-step process. Leather-strapped antique Italian buckets fill niches and nooks in the light, airy kitchen. As the kitchen meanders into the Great Room, a copper-sink wet bar with copper inlaid cabinets is a favorite spot for guests and family.
When family life quiets down, Kathy enjoys the tranquil study with its his–and-hers desk space and ceiling-high bookshelves. "The burgundy walls were custom painted, and a glaze finish was applied so the look is aged, almost leathery. The resulting color is incredibly intense," she says. The hand textured, chocolate-color walls in the dining room possess the same equally incredible antique look with romantic golden touches.
Sleeping space is maximized in a total of four bedrooms, two designed as spacious suites. The master suite uses the lavish, large space judiciously, making it ideal for nocturnal Sam and his "morning-person" wife. "Sam likes to stay up late and I go to bed early. Our master suite arrangement is ideal for us," says Kathy. Linked by a gorgeous master bath, two luxurious bedrooms with lounging areas and fireplaces give the couple bedtime options. The oversized, double-vanity master bath boasts a roomy oval glassed-in steam shower with curved built-in seating for relaxing and soaking in the steam. "I really love how the master rooms pamper us just like a Las Vegas penthouse suite," says Kathy.
Kathy takes credit for the cellar's custom-made wrought iron Cantera® door with clustered grape motif. Find distinctive Bar & Kitchen Furniture that will transform your own home bar or kitchen into a stellar gathering area.
Unlike the quiet master suite where Sam and Kathy find respite from their business lives, the downstairs family room becomes a hub of activity on winter weekends. "It's my impression that no one really uses a dedicated media room or a home theatre all that often," Sam says. “I wanted one roomy entertaining area indoors so people could mingle, shoot pool, listen to music and keep an eye on the game." As a successful night club entrepreneur, he knew what type of room layout makes this happen: a cushy leather sectional sofa in front of the 50" plasma TV, a roomy wooden bar reminiscent of an English pub, and a billiards table all co-exist in one lively room. Having a well-stocked wine cellar with corking station just a few feet from the bar was also part of his plan, though Kathy takes credit for the cellar's custom-made wrought iron Cantera® door with clustered grape motif.
Outdoor Splendor...with a View
Outdoors, Sam and Kathy chose to introduce some of the night club glitz for which they're noted. "We host so many parties out there, we wanted it to be dramatic, to be something people remember. Between the business and charity entertaining we do, we've had parties of up to 300 people outside," says Kathy. The outdoor deck sweeps around the back of the estate. A spectacular infinity pool seemingly slips into the horizon where the twinkling lights of Colorado Springs shine. Perhaps the deck's most striking water feature is the 42"-high, round tile fountain topped with a dramatic fire bowl. Leaping flames create a spectacular nighttime focal point. A unique, covered gathering place Sam and Kathy aptly call the "gazebar"—a shimmering gazebo-like bar equipped a flat-screen TV and sound system— keeps guests entertained. "When the sun hits it just right, the gazebar almost glimmers because the inside is faux painted in metallic colors with gold leaf accents," says Kathy. Another of the bar's glitzy inspirations is the marble onyx countertop installed with LED under-lighting; at night, the lights permeate the marble so it glows.
Conversation tables for two and several dining tables furnish the outdoor entertainment space, with two barbeque grills flanking the deck to make certain even large crowds are well fed. Stamped concrete floors lend a finished look to the entire space, and curving lengths of built-in stone wall seating turn even casual buffets for 100 into sit-down dinners for all. Another proven crowd-pleaser, at least for the toddler set, is the backyard playground Kathy had installed especially for her grandchildren.
The Important Landscape
"To me, one of the most important things is a home's landscaping, and it often falls short. I wasn't going to let that happen," says Kathy. The beautiful grounds reflect her philosophy. In teaming with a local landscaping company, she opted for a natural yard with tranquil ponds flowing down into rocky streams, blooming wildflowers, well-placed boulders, and groves of aspen trees. There's nothing out of place in the beautiful mountainous setting.
While Kathy's labor of love was planning the landscaping, Sam's was in equipping the six-vehicle garage to house his beloved antique motorcycle collection. From more than 30 restored red motorcycles, the one he's most proud of is a 100-year-old Reading Standard. Its claim to fame is that it once was ridden all the way up Pikes Peak. Kathy laughs, "We have old photos to prove it." "I ride my motorcycles whenever I get a chance," says Sam. The rest of the time they're safely displayed in his garage Taj Mahal. "The garage has a fantastic surface on the floor. If oil leaks from a motorcycle, I can just turn on the hose and wash it away. It's great," Sam says with an aficionado’s enthusiasm.
Married 30 years and life-long residents of Colorado Springs, Kathy and Sam concur that designing and decorating their sumptuous Stratton Forest home was like developing a night club, but also very different. "From start to finish, it was an exciting endeavor, but so personal. We wanted to get it just right," says Kathy. And they did—by creating a quintessentially Colorado Springs all-season family home with a commanding view of the city that perfectly complements their leisure lifestyle and ardor for entertaining.
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