Let the stories begin! When I’m fortunate enough to be invited into one’s home for a celebration of any kind, I look forward to the inevitable re-telling of great stories from past gatherings. That’s the moment I relax and revel in the bonds unveiling between myself and those I’ve arrived to enjoy. The eat, drink and be merry comes naturally once everyone settles in and begins to feel right at home.
With the holidays upon us, it becomes particularly tricky to pull this off,… but who among us really scouts our next home with entertaining aforethought? Unless you make merry often, it hardly comes to mind. But boy oh boy! What wouldn’t you give at this moment for an extra guest bath or bar sink now that the in-laws and their pack of heathens are parked in your private living area?
A custom home design with natural flow and clever spaces will provide plenty of opportunity for guests to gussy up in privacy and feel at ease. Overly formal, self-conscious floor plans no longer agree with how we live today. When it comes to custom home designs, out with the fancy pants and in with a house that caters to small to mid-sized groupings. This is really enough for most people to entertain comfortably. Whether it’s a snowbound weekend enjoyed with out-of-towner’s, a festive bash or just a casual evening celebration, today’s host/hostess can create a magical atmosphere with minimal stress when their home conforms to the occasion. Just add sparkling cocktails and Voila!
Elements to consider in custom home designs include ample parking, ease of access, flow from the kitchen and/or bar to entertaining areas, double ovens, wine refrigerators, great rooms or large living areas, screened porches, open decks and terraces. Overnight guests appreciate living quarters that are separate from the rest of the sleeping rooms, making terrific use of the rising popularity of double master suites now featured in many newer custom home designs.
But one doesn’t need a new custom home to hold a fabulous soiree’. There are several period homes that really take advantage of open space and offer myriad venues to encourage guests to group together naturally.
Consider the Mid-Century Modern (MCM or Mid-Mod) from the the 1950’s thru the mid-1960’s. This iconic home is enjoying a huge resurgence in popularity. Or the Brady Bunch Split-Level with extra large living/dining areas, up/down fireplaces and separate level living spaces. These well-built, snazzy homes often include one or more open areas for living and entertaining. Gracious lines, expansive flair and a casual attitude make these vintage abodes ideal for frequent gatherings.
Don’t say ‘No’ when your Realtor® suggests an alternative you didn’t put on your ‘Wants and Needs List’. Put your party hat on, put up that groovy aluminum Christmas Tree and consider the possibilities. Throw in that fish-eye camera your niece bought you for Christmas last year and you can start writing your own holiday stories. And please, send me an invitation!