“This lot was a catalyst for building a contemporary home,” Julie Wall said of the waterfront site where she and her husband, Steve Wall, started a new empty-nest chapter of life and became first-time builders. “We had a vision for modern in this location. And I’ve always had an attraction to contemporary homes.”
“We wanted the view of the Causeway and the water and the sunset,” added Steve Wall.
Having spent two decades in a plantation-style house occupying two acres on the north shore, where they raised their children, the Walls liked the Metairie lot next to the lakefront levee not only for its natural beauty, but also for its convenience to Steve Wall’s work and its smaller size.
The vaulted ceiling of painted wood in the Walls’ monochromatic living area grounds the more glamorous look of the chandelier, which is inspired by shards of ice.
They bought the property, sold nearly all of their furniture and began working on a house that would be a complete departure both in terms of its minimalist style and its relaxing amenities.
The couple researched ideas online and brought them to a team of design experts — builder Nelson Clayton, of Nelson Clayton Homes (who oversaw the project and brought the others on board); James Chauvin, of Olde Orleans Designs; and interior designer Wes Ulmo, of Wes Ulmo Interior Design, who’d all collaborated before.
“One of the things we started with was the wooden wall behind the stand-alone tub,” said Steve Wall, referring to the horizontal slats of engineered wood flooring that create a striking focal point in the master bath.
In the Walls’ primary bedroom, tall three-paneled corner windows face the lake. Their shape is echoed in the constructed fabric headboard that reaches across the wall.
That idea served in turn as inspiration for the “oak longboard” used on the exterior of the L-shaped residence. The product is actually made of aluminum and comes in 24-foot lengths that fit together with tongue-in-groove ends.
While modern form was a must, the function of the house was also important. The Walls’ requirements included easy maintenance, indoor and outdoor spaces where they could relax and enjoy the Lakefront setting, a pool, hot tub and outdoor cooking area where they could entertain friends and family (their blended family includes three children and two grandchildren). They also wanted an elevator (for easy access since the living spaces would be raised …….