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The stunning stairwell in St. Paul that showcases Integrity Windows.

Windows That Wow on the Luxury Home Tour

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The stunning stairwell in St. Paul that showcases Integrity Windows.

We’ve spent a great deal of time paying close attention to the latest trends in high-end home design. With the start of this year’s Luxury and Artisan Home Tours in the Twin Cities, we thought it would be the perfect time to get out in the field and see firsthand how builders in the Minnesota are integrating the latest building and design trends into their current projects.

For this week’s post, we are going to focus on the Luxury Home Tour. This tour, which runs weekends in June (so yes, it is going on now!), is a great way to have access to some of the most breathtaking, multi-million dollar homes in the metro. And this year, to our delight, many of these homes feature either Marvin or Integrity windows! For this year’s tour, we went out and visited two very different homes that used Integrity windows in their designs, and we were beyond impressed. Here are some key highlights and takeaways from our visit:

The first stop on our tour was a home in the Crocus Hills neighborhood of St. Paul (700 Osceola Ave. St. Paul). Built by Detail Design + Build and Architect Charlie Simmons of Charlie and Co Design, this home is a great example of how, by paying attention to every detail, they were able to create a home that is more traditional on the outside and yet has a contemporary or modern feel on the inside. You can even see how the home was constructed on the Charlie and Co Design site. From the street, this new home fits in so well with the character of the other homes on the block, you would think that it has been there forever. Designated as a national historic district, this Tudor sits on a tree-lined cobblestone street and has a very classic exterior. But step inside and you can see a more contemporary influence coming through loud and clear, starting with the windows.

All of the windows in this home are Integrity windows (mostly casements) with a black interior and ebony exterior, which gives them a more industrial, or “steel,” look and feel. The windows in this home play a major role in the overall aesthetic, and truly are one of the key design features of the home. From the powder room that includes a glass feature wall that extends behind the vanity, to a four-story stair tower full of windows that bring in an unbelievable amount of natural light, the home feels very open and bright throughout. Step further into the home and again, you can see how Integrity’s windows play a starring role in the main entertaining areas of the home. Starting with the breakfast nook that is surrounded by large casement and awning windows that wrap around the corners of the room, to the extra large sliding patio door that leads to the outdoor patio, the space feels very open and inviting. We loved how the dark finish of the windows were complimented by white oak floors and steel elements throughout, creating a style that, in the word of the builder, “blends old world with modern amenities and style.”

The second home that we visited on the tour is a luxurious 6,700-square-foot home that sits high upon 2.5 acres of hillside just east of St. Paul in Afton, MN. Built by Highmark Builders, this is a more traditional style home, yet, like its counterpart in Crocus Hill, also features Integrity windows with an ebony exterior and black interior. In this application, the dark finishes of the windows works to compliment or accentuate the wood detailing that is used throughout the house, giving it a comfortable, yet elegant feel. This home was built to take advantage of the views and includes an amazing 3-season porch with large windows off the main family room to look out on the St. Croix Valley below. Even though this was a more traditional-style home, we did see hints of contemporary or modern design elements throughout that added to the beauty and detail of the home’s finishes. Complimenting the timber beams and stone fireplaces, we did find gold fixtures in the powder room and on some of the interior doors of the home. We also saw a powder room that was painted in a dark, almost black paint color, which is a hot new design trend. Like the Crocus Hill home, this house also featured awning windows above the vanity in the master bathroom as a unique design element and a way to bring more natural daylight into the space. This treatment of bathroom windows is definitely a trend that we are loving in all styles of homes these days!

The Luxury Home Tour wraps up this weekend, so if you are in the metro area and have the chance, we suggest you get out and get inspired. In the meantime, here are a few cell-phone photos from the two homes we visited (we’re planning to have a professional photo shoot soon). Enjoy!

Captions for photos at right:

The house overlooking the St. Croix in Afton, MN.

The house overlooking the St. Croix in Afton, MN.

The windows of this home in St. Paul's Crocus Hill neighborhood have a sleek, modern feel.

The windows of this home in St. Paul’s Crocus Hill neighborhood have a sleek, modern feel.

The living room windows invite the outdoors inside the Crocus Hill house.

The living room windows invite the outdoors inside the Crocus Hill house.

Crocus Hill bath

Windows behind a bathroom vanity are a red-hot trend in 2015, and the Crocus Hill home features a breathtaking example.

Windows behind a bathroom vanity are a red-hot trend in 2015, and the Crocus Hill home features a breathtaking example.