This beautiful Mediterranean inspired home came about after a hunting trip among mutual friends. Ben and Patricia Spies, after meeting in Italy and living abroad, had started a family, and wanted to live closer to his hometown of Longview. Tyler with its growth and proximity to Dallas for travel, appealed to them and their two daughters given its sense of community and access to schools, family activities, restaurants, and entertainment.
An Eddie Clark home is all about the details and you can see how well Eddie and the Spies collaborated on those details. The warmth of this home can be seen from the curb. The natural rock exterior from Five Star Stone & Brick, executed by B&B Masonry, accented by up lights and the winding front walkway draw you in. The two-story staircase with chandelier and beautiful metal work by One-Ten Welding is a stunning focal point to the left of the door.
The lanterns on the front porch are one of the details that make you want to sit down and stay a while, appreciating the artistry of the arched wooden front door, the traditional tiled roof and the landscaping done by Rosa and Juan’s that is in keeping with the overall design and would be at home in Northern Italy.
Ben Spies, in case you have not followed his career, is an accomplished former professional motorcycle road racer. Spies won the AMA Superbike Championship in 2006, also defending his title in 2007 and 2008. The AMA Superbike Championship is considered the premier motorcycle road racing series in the United States and has been run annually since 1976.
Here in the kitchen, it is all about details again. Don’s TV and Appliance was the source for all the necessities, the high-end range and oven completed by a pasta water faucet, stunning stainless fridge that can accommodate a growing family plus entertaining, and double dishwashers. What really draws you into this space is the custom banquette with Quartzite tabletop from Granite Division. Juxtaposing that beautiful slab with flat edges and angled corners with the cool white material of the countertops is breathtaking. What a wonderful place to enjoy a cup of coffee and breakfast or sit while there is a flurry of activity in the kitchen.
The floors in the kitchen and service areas are a beautiful broad tile that coexists with honey colored hardwood creating a truly modern take on the Mediterranean feel.
This view of the dining room that is visually open and airy, is also made an intimate space by the thoughtful continuation of the arched column ways and balance of the room. The high baseboards add drama to space and are the perfect scale to the height of this hub of the house. There is no shortage of nice views no matter where you are seated for a meal at this table, especially for dinner when the dusk over the pool makes one feel this is a personal in town oasis. Patricia’s touch can be seen in the glam choice of table mixed with stylish but comfortable chairs asking guests to not rush and enjoy a coursed meal as only Italian hostesses have perfected.
One of the best planned inclusions in this house are dual primary bedrooms—one upstairs and one downstairs. This really opens the home to many different living scenarios. For a family with young children the parents can be right down the hall and offer the ground floor primary bedroom to visiting family. As the family grows in the home, or considers it their forever home, the parents can move to the first floor primary and use the upstairs primary for guests or for older children. This should be included in all new builds for such flexibility.
The upstairs primary bedroom shown here feels like it is in a tree house off the private sitting room shown in detail earlier. The plush carpet is the perfect thing to step on when you get out of bed. The closet finish-out with cabinetry by D&H Quality Cabinets, also used throughout the house, is an organizer and fashionista’s dream with a perfect place to store everything. The hardware seen in the closet and the bathroom from Sword finishes each space with understated elegance.
The bathroom has plenty of space for two people to get ready to go about their day or get ready for bed. The lighting in this sanctuary from Hagen’s adds the right illumination for putting on makeup or having a bath under the chic pendant light fixture. The floor coverings and tile continue throughout in the soothing color palette of the rest of the home. The bright white walls add the perfect accent to the overall design.
How fitting that the movie on the screen shows Steve McQueen, the King of Cool, who was an active motorcycle and car racer on screen and outside of his acting career, racing under the moniker Harvey Mushman. The Triumph TR6 Trophy Motorcycle shown here is from the movie The Great Escape. The movie room is one of the darker rooms in the house color wise. This provides an optimal movie watching experience and highlights the family collection of movie posters. The moveable sectional here can be configured for family snuggles or multiple guests.
The care in the design and execution of the girls’ bedrooms as places to create, play, and sleep are equally functional and lovely. The rooms enjoy the bright light and views of the other spaces in the home and the plush carpeting of the primary bedroom. One accent wall in purple and the other in pink with matching window coverings make the rooms personal to their inhabitants with some crossover of colors.
Bedroom size is a trademark of Eddie Clark homes. So many homes do not consider how particularly children use their rooms. Whipping up fanciful creations in a lavender kitchen, and drawing, coloring, and creating art on children’s tables can transition to dressing tables and computer desks as the room grows with the child. Room for shelving for stuffed animals and books can also later transition to trophies, pictures, and memories.
No home in East Texas would be complete without an outdoor living space. With our temperate climate most of the year there is nothing better than spending time outdoors. The outdoors includes ample space for entertainment. The space has a clear blue pool indicative of the Tyrrhenian Sea with arching water features and many places to lounge, dine, and just take it all in. The back covered porch is as inviting as the front and really anchors the ambiance of the backyard. The umbrellas invoke the feeling of being at a resort and offer nice shade in the heat of the day.
The installation of Ben’s winning motorcycles, helmets and memorabilia incorporates his career and successes in his family’s everyday life. One of his daughters is already a fearless rider, who we will most likely be hearing about in the future. Most racing teams, due to the proprietary nature of the bike’s alterations, do not allow riders to keep their winning bikes. Spies had the foresight to contractually request his winning bikes to be able to create this poignant testament to his career and showcase what motorcycle racing looks like.
One thing that most people don’t think about is the ingress and egress from a home. Here again, it is all in the details. Ample garages and a wide driveway that takes turning radius into account sometimes goes unnoticed, but really adds to the overall experience of the home. From front door to back driveway everything in this home is exquisite.