A New Nest


Designer Christine Markatos Lowe helps a couple replace their empty nest with an inviting new home

A custom sofa by L’Artigiano Studio sits atop a rug from Mark Nelson.
Photos by Manolo Langis.
The custom curved bar is covered in tiles from Maya Romanoff metal tiles.
Photos by Manolo Langis.

“I always start by considering the existing architecture of the house when setting a design intent,” says designer Christine Markatos Lowe on her firm’s approach to design. “More than any particular aesthetic desire, it is important that the design is integrated with the architectural style of the home.”

In the dining room, the table features bases by Fisher Weisman from Jean de Merry with a custom top and a chandelier from Blackman Cruz. Photos by Manolo Langis.
A chandelier from Cosulich sheds light in the living room. Photos by Manolo Langis.

She and her team applied this philosophy inside a traditional home by giving it a more transitional feel for a couple who decided to relocate from Northern California to L.A. in to be closer to their children and grandchildren. “A long-awaited dream for the wife, they were finally able to design a home just for themselves rather than for their growing family,” she says.”The youthful couple loves entertaining and leading an active lifestyle, which was very much taken into account when designing this home for them.”

Photos by Manolo Langis.

The overall design direction was to increase space for entertaining and create a hotel-like ambiance throughout. Work began on the 5,000-square-foot home by stripping away the dated details from the 90s and creating a more open feel while maintaining a level of intimacy. “We had a massively scaled great room to contend with which at once had to feel comfortable for just the two of them, as well as for a party of forty,” says Lowe.”With multiple entry points, the biggest job was to make it feel cohesive as one space, yet serve multiple purposes.”

Custom nightstands by L’Artigiano Studio, clad in Maya Romanoff Mother of pearl tiles shine in the main bedroom. Photos by Manolo Langis.
The main bathroom features a beautifully bold wallpaper by The Wallcovering Company. Photos by Manolo Langis.

The most coveted design moment in the home, is the custom, curved bar front-clad in Maya Romanoff metal tiles with brass shelves to display the client’s tequila collection and beautiful glassware from Table Art; custom designed embroidered leather serves as the backsplash; and a custom Urban Electric Sconce. “On the opposite side of the room, the wine cellar is concealed behind a set of custom doors covered in the same embroidered Weitzner leather by Embroidery Palace with beautiful Maison Vervloet hardware from E.R. Butler,” says the designer. “We also got to help the clients begin a great collection of black and white photography which has been placed throughout the house and sourced mostly from the esteemed Peter Fetterman Gallery here in Santa Monica.”

Photos by Manolo Langis.
Photos by Manolo Langis.
Photos by Manolo Langis.

“We actually got a video of the client’s reaction walking through the space for the first time and the sheer over-joyed expression spoke a thousand words.  In conversations since, the wife in particular is totally at peace in her dream home serving as a true respite from their busy lifestyle.”