Meyerland couple replace flooded ranch with contemporary raised house

Shelly and Steve Strauss relax in their art-filled home, surrounded by contemporary finishes and furnishings, finally achieving what they have both wanted for years.

Their journey to this Meyerland dream was difficult, helping her parents after their neighboring house was flooded by both Tropical Storm Allison in 2001 and Hurricane Ike in 2008, then dealing with their own soggy mess afterward. Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

Almost all the houses in their neighborhood were flooded, some soaked in several feet of water and others in a few inches. The Strausses had eight to nine inches of water in what was then their 1960s breeder. It ruined all of their furniture, appliances and more.

Some neighbors raised their existing houses, trying to match the brick as best they could on new bases. Others, like the Straussees, were demolished and rebuilt.

Shortly before the hurricane devastated much of the Gulf Coast, the Straussees were considering renovation projects; he wanted a new kitchen and she wanted a backyard pool.

“It was going to cost so much to lift the house, and then we still had to remodel the interior. Why? It wasn’t our dream home, ”said Shelly of their decision to start over, building a completely contemporary home. They briefly considered opting for a high-rise condo, but the two years they spent in an apartment during the design and construction of their new home sealed the deal: they prefer peace and privacy. of a single-family home.

Changes to the city code forced them to build four and a half feet above the ground. A partial wall hides the front staircase, and the facade is an interesting mix of Hardie panels, bronze-black bricks, stucco, and aluminum planks that look remarkably like wood.

“The house isn’t completely square – it’s sloping,” said Earl Correll, president and CEO of their builder, On Point Custom Homes. “The Strausses had a lot of good ideas and had a designer with good ideas. They have put together a good team to build a house that they can enjoy for many years to come.

In addition to the On Point team, the couple hired Claudia Soroka from CBS Designs, who had helped them with projects in their old home, to select the tiles, hardware and furniture.

Luckily for them, the job ended as the pandemic worsened. On the day Harris County closed, the Strausses were moving in furniture.

Soroka knows how much Shelly loves color in her decor, but convinced her to tone down the palette as a whole with lots of grays and white, reserving color for accents and art.

An entrance wall with a dozen or more art niches contains various pieces from their vast collection of art glass. It’s also a glimpse of the elegant staircase visible from the entrance and the street, a contemporary mix of wooden steps, glass panels and Lucite handrails.

Formal living and dining rooms were rarely used in their old 3,100 square foot ranchers, so they removed them in this new 3,900 square foot two-story home. Now the living room and dining room share the same space as their sleek and modern kitchen.

The living room has wall cabinets with space for an electric fireplace, small bar, display stand and storage space. The interesting texture on the top is a faux ostrich. While the rug, sofa, and a pair of chairs are all neutral, the star of this room – other than the colorful art – is a curved chair upholstered in dark purple leather.

“I steered them away from some choices that looked too much like their other home,” Soroka said. “I said ‘this is a new house. Don’t go back to the same colors. I thought they should have a new color scheme and fit it into this decade.

In the dining room, a table with a black glass top hides a clever secret: beneath its round surface are two more crescent-shaped pieces that pull out to extend the surface into an oval. This modern table and most of the other furniture in the house were purchased from Cantoni.

“I really like my bright colors. You can see I love the color, ”Shelly said. “Claudia convinced me to use all of these works of art and pieces of glass as color and to go more neutral and muted. I struggled with it but accepted, and now I love it.

The kitchen has a spacious island covered in waterfall-style installed porcelain tiles and perimeter cabinets that have a mix of wood (lower) and glossy white (upper) facades. A pantry hidden around the corner holds staples and snacks.

A powder-coated bathroom off the kitchen also connects to the outside, with doors accessing both inside and from the outside patio. The inspiration here was a bowl-shaped glass sink that Shelly found.

The room was complemented with a plaster finish on the walls, a gold painted wall cabinet, a polished black granite and leather countertop, and a unique five-sided arrowhead mirror.

A master bedroom suite has been finished with a boutique feel to match Shelly’s avant-garde style.

Soroka helped the couple choose porcelain and quartz combinations for the tub surround, shower, and countertops in a white / gray / black palette, finishing the room with unusual hardware, a mix of shiny metal and stone in the drawer knobs and pulls on the cabinets with a lacquered finish.

Two bathrooms and three more bedrooms – two for their sons Jason, 34, and Zachary, 28, and a third that has been turned into a home gym.

Shelly’s love for color is fully on display in the upstairs game room, which contains a red leather sofa, a turquoise felt-covered pool table, and large-format artwork that explodes with color.

Because the Strausses are older – and to prepare it for any future owner – they wanted an elevator for their two-story house. It starts in the garage, which helps with grocery shopping and parcels inside.

Shelly jokes that when floodwater from Hurricane Harvey seeped into their old home, she told her husband he should be glad they didn’t renovate their kitchen as planned. In the end, however, Steve got the kitchen he wanted and Shelly got a nice pool.

In the back yard, a raised patio has a dining table and summer kitchen, and the ground-level pool is surrounded by full-size polished white marble tiles. Stormy palms replaced fruit trees that died in the February frost.

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