Brittany Hakimfar and Philadelphia-based interior design firm, FarStudio, is far from a “one and done” firm. In fact, many clients reach out again when they move or when they’re ready to expand their current home. That was the case here—Brittany had designed and decorated one family’s main residence, and when it was time to build a pool and pool house, she was just the one for the job. Though it’s in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, the inspiration is decidedly California casual. The combination of stone, blackened wood siding, and earthy-with-an-edge interiors result in a breathtaking addition to the property. 

We’d first love to know a bit about your clients! Who lives here?
The clients were actually one of our first clients when we did their main house and since then, we have continued to work on many projects with them including two beach houses, an office, and, of course, this pool house. They are in their 40s with three boys, ages 11-18, and have been so trusting and appreciative of our design vision. They really want to live in homes that feel special and inspiring, and they are fully trusting of us to create that. In addition to being great clients, over the years, they have also become our great friends.

What was your scope of work?
We were brought onto the project from the inception and worked on everything from ideas to completion. We initially worked closely with the architects on the architecture and design and helped create the overall feeling and vision for the space, selecting all of the materials. We then worked hand in hand with the contractor to ensure the overall design was met and all the details were exactly as we had wanted. Lastly, we, of course, did all of the custom millwork design, selected all of the finishes and all of the furniture down to styling and accessories.

What was your style inspiration for the pool house?
The style is definitely West Coast influenced with contemporary vibes. The idea was to create a full indoor/outdoor living experience. The exterior of the structure was built with a combination of stone, blackened wood siding with glass, and was covered with a black metal roof. The flooring was constructed with a porcelain tile in a warm gray color that flowed from the inside to the outdoors, and the glass doors slide open, ultimately providing the quintessential inside-to-outside California living experience.

In the main room, all the walls are done in a warm white toned plaster that gives just the right amount of texture, the ceiling is clad in white oak and charred ash wood runs up the fireplace. All the counters are done in Caesarstone’s concrete rough finish, which is super durable yet still works with all the natural materials. We really wanted to bring in a lot of natural elements and layers to juxtapose the modern shell.

 The main pool bathroom is covered in a beautiful green toned Zellige tile from Zia Tile and the ceiling is done in a lime textured plaster green color to match the tiles. The pool house also boasts a fully finished lower-level bathroom with a bedroom, a living room, and a full bath. The standalone bathroom was finished with all-black Zellige tiles with brass fixtures. 

Did this project have any challenges? 
The biggest challenge was the exterior material, and we truly went through hundreds of samples before landing on the perfect product. This was so important for it to look authentic and still be as durable as possible during the east coast winters.

How long did the project take, and what did the client say when they saw the finished space? 
The project took a full year and definitely was a bit longer than expected but the clients were so thrilled with the result and it was everything they could have imagined. 

Take a tour in the slideshow.