For homeowners (and remodelers), an unfinished basement is the equivalent of an empty canvas for a painter. The possibilities for artistic creation are almost endless.
A couple in Oakhill, VA had been staring at their blank canvas basement for years, wanting to turn it into an entertainment wonderland, even coming up with their own ideas and sketches for what they wanted in the space. They reached out to Michael Nash Design Build for professional help.
“We love these projects,” says Sonny Nazemian, master designer/remodeler at Michael Nash Design Build. “There were a lot of expectations here and our design staff reviewed their sketches and ultimately came up with a new and improved floor plan that satisfied their requirements. What was important to them was to have an open and inviting space with multiple uses.”
The original stairway from the main level was positioned in way that made the basement lay-out very choppy and not so desirable. Add to that, the hot water heater and HVAC unit took over the middle of the basement and was very awkward. So, the first order of business was to redesign the staircase and open up one side to widen the game room area and allow better use of the main space with an airier feel. Then the entire HVAC, hot water heater and main stack duct work were moved to allow room for the new bar area and an allowed the designers to add a stage for the theatre seating space.
“A big component of basement design is allowing for natural light and access to outdoors,” says Sonny. “Without light, a basement seems cramped and people are less likely to use the space. To this end, we took out the original French doors and created windows for a new cozy seating area and moved the doors across from the bar, which improved flow and gave better access to the backyard flagstone patio. This simple switch makes a huge difference for daily life and entertaining.”
The team was able to design a wall with built-ins on the far end of the space that accommodated an 80” TV and all sound equipment, including an embedded surround sound and speakers that serve the entire basement from a central location. On the far end of the space, they created a cozy seating area and gathering place with good window lighting and complete with a linear gas fireplace surrounded by metal linear stone and a floating stone hearth, which has become a visual centerpiece.
Between these areas and just across from the new French doors, the team laid out the exquisite marble top bar with bar seating, gorgeous pin drop pendant lights, dark espresso cabinetry, tall wine Capitan, and lots of other amenities like an ice maker, large wine cooer, and refrigerator. The designers introduced a very unique glass backsplash tile to set this bar area off and also interconnect this space with color schemes of the fireplace area. The large living space is brought together with wide plank grey tone engineered wood floors that softly harmonize the stone walls and cabinet finishes.
The size of the basement allowed for a guest suite bedroom and bathroom for guests and in-laws. The bath design includes a walk-in shower, floating vanities, pin hanging vanity lights and the tile and fixture selections for this bathroom would serve well in any main bath in any home. Final touches include bar ledges in the new gaming area for setting drinks, and custom built-ins to display arts and trophies at the bottom of the stairs. And just to right of the staircase sits an exercise room complete with rubber flooring.
“Based on where we started,” says the homeowner. “I couldn’t have imagined this in my wildest dreams.”
“The vivid color tones, stunning fireplace wall, and multiple furnished area setting has made this couple put this basement space to its maximum use with their parties and casual gatherings,” says Sonny.