Welcome to our architectural review newsletter. This up-close look behind the scenes and the mind of Harry Gandy Howle reflects how each finished home is a project of energy and enthusiasm that represents an intense level of attention to details.
Besides the fact that James and I have had significant experience designing and renovating numerous homes and villas within the John’s Island community, the key to success for this project was how in sync the homeowners were with one another. They both were on the same page from the first day we met to final completion of the renovation. Any time we met by phone or in person, both of them were present and in agreement. Patty and John Dudzik, originally from Greenwich, Connecticut spent several years visiting different communities within south Florida before landing in John’s Island. They knew they wanted a friendly community, an open floor plan with sweeping views, and plenty of outdoor living areas to fit their active lifestyle and big family.
We understood our job of taking a chopped up, chambered villa to an open, welcoming floor plan was going to require nearly gutting the entire home. James worked closely with Patty and John throughout the process and managed all logistics, which meant keeping it within budget. Delivering the selected design on budget and on time are definite keys to a client’s happiness. The Dudziks got what they wanted with a final design that featured an open floor plan with two guest suites, an office within a roomy master suite, and views of the beautiful outdoor living spaces from nearly every vantage point.
Without a doubt, the loggia that offers seamless access from the living area to the putting green on the east was John and Patty’s favorite feature. They admit that they spend the majority of their time on the loggia with a fireplace, putting green, and pool spa within steps. From the center of the home, which includes the kitchen, dining and living areas, they have postcard-worthy views of the entire outdoor entertainment area. This area is also where their family loves to spend time when they are visiting. All three of their sons live and work in New York City, so visits to this tropical abode are a welcomed reprieve.
For me, I loved that the lot was slightly larger than the other villa lots surrounding it, because it was just big enough at 0.6 acres to design a site plan that not only included a custom putting green, it also allowed us to design a free-standing guest cabana with a patio and long view of the pool area. The pitching and putting green certainly intrigued me. As a licensed landscape architect, I’ve had interest in golf course design since my college days, culminating with my graduate thesis on golf course design. This feature was so important to the homeowners, James and I painstakingly ensured that the architectural design would allow unobstructed views of it from the minute you enter the front door.
For avid golfers like Patty and John, a custom putting green in the backyard allows them to practice their short game, which is a dream come true for most people. The timing of the completion of their home renovation was impeccable. We finished the project and all installations by December 2019. The pandemic and stay-at-home order followed soon after in March 2020. While Patty and John originally planned to only spend winter in their new villa, the universe had a different plan last year. They both agreed if they had to stay put indefinitely, their new Vero Beach home was a beautiful place to comply.
The collaboration with Croom Construction Company and Southwest Greens to make the putting green a reality was the ideal working situation. Our firm designed the Dudzik home to create open living spaces, while taking advantage of the beautiful views and entertainment areas. Croom Construction built the home and ensured our floor plan was adhered to as designed, and Southwest Greens installed the putting green to perfection. The Dudziks had the foresight to seek out a talented and experienced team of professionals, which ultimately made everyone’s job just a bit easier.
“We wanted a sophisticated coastal look, a look that works for when we have company as well as when we want to put our feet up and watch football. This villa fits the bill in terms of our priorities. This is where we wanted to be and we couldn’t be happier.” Patty and John Dudzik – as reported in Vero Beach Magazine, February 2021