John Carmack, a successful entrepreneur, once said “A strong team can take any crazy vision and turn it into a reality”. Young power couple Gabriella (29) and Jorge (32) Salazar are great visionaries. They have architected their upwardly-mobile lifestyle quite unexpectedly around not one, but two fixer uppers. Working as a team, with the support of their families and friends, they were able to fearlessly create two dazzling homes in record time.
Jorge and Gabriella met about 7 years ago through mutual friends while she was vacationing in Nicaragua. Jorge is from Managua, the capital, and although Gabriella grew up in the States, her family is originally from Latin America. It wasn’t long before they fell in love and realized they both wanted a serious relationship. They managed this long-distance for about 4 years before tying the knot. And for the first 3 years of their marriage they lived at full-throttle, enjoying a fast-paced, fun-filled life that had its equal share of serious adult responsibilities.
Their most precious treasure, a baby girl, was born in 2015, just 1 year after they got married. It was Gabriella’s biggest birthday present as Paulina arrived just 1 day after mom’s birthday – something they will forever cherish as a family. This unstoppable young couple, with a new baby on board, had JUST moved into their starter home when they became parents. The house needed a massive makeover, so life quickly got very hectic. Late nights out, traveling for pleasure, and being spontaneous were all replaced with endless hours of renovation and design work, caring for a new baby, and work travels, since they simultaneously maintained their busy careers as entrepreneurs. These personal and professional demands, early on in their lives, is something very few are able to juggle with the grit and grace that these two did.
Time flew by and even before they were completely done transforming their fixer upper into their dream home, Gabriella noticed that the abandoned house just around the street from them had been put on the market. The house was on her regular running path and she had always flirted with owning it. This ambitious girl quickly recognizes a great business opportunity when she sees it, and she immediately told her husband: “Jorge, that house is finally for sale.”
The house was a blank canvas, there was almost nothing inside that could be salvaged – yellow walls, hideous carpet, a burnt kitchen, and floors beyond repair! But these trend-savvy young urbanites did not lack for vision, bringing in unique and eclectic designs inspired by different cultures and places they had been. And so they made a decision to dive into yet another huge project as they saw the potential that this abandoned and severely neglected house had in store. With creative networking and tenacity, they convinced the owners to take their offer! Much to the surprise of their friends and family, who all thought they were simply crazy, (Jorge was a little in disbelief himself!).
The renovation work began – inspired by their travels, using mixed materials and a combination of old with new. Their home, little by little, became their own: chic, yet worn-in and modern, yet cozy. Just the perfect balance that resulted in a truly unique and stunning space, big enough for their growing family and desired lifestyle.
Completing the look were white subway tiles in bathrooms, shiplap walls, sparkling white and clean designs that would surely wow all of their guests! And, most importantly, were pieces hand-picked by them, filled with stories, such as when Gabriella’s second grade teacher (who happened to be her father’s neighbor) gave them a classic antique farmhouse-style double sink that Gabriella loved so much she vowed to take it with her wherever she goes. The sink was actually the inspiration for the kids’ bathroom. In the master bath, thanks to the vast selection that Luxart offers, they were able to pair the perfect Luxart polished chrome modern Aerro suite with their funky mosaic floor tiles – and the bathroom came out just as they had envisioned. One interesting detail in their master bathroom is that since Jorge is so tall (6”1’ to Gabriella’s 5’2), they used Luxart’s shower column rail that adjusts to be tall enough so that he no longer needs to squat while taking a shower! Aww, the small details that can make one so happy.
"We love to make something ours and unique."
In the kitchen, they opted for a brushed nickel Aerro pull-down kitchen faucet to go with their wood island, which is topped with slate and it has a rustic farm chic style. With an open concept kitchen (and even open shelves above the sink to display their glasses, plates and cutting boards), it was important to choose a faucet that made a statement, as the sink really became the focal point of the entire room. Then, for the laundry area Luxart’s products offered the style they were looking for as they choose the industrial Agra kitchen faucet with a brushed finish, paired with a Luxart deep stainless steel apron-front sink.