Trout Design Studio

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PORTNOY Residence,
Washington, DC

This basement renovation transformed a claustrophobic warren of 6 rooms into an expansive open family room with added guest suite-bedroom, full bath with marble tiled walls and floor, and a laundry room.

Where a large steel beam dominated the ceiling in the main room, dividing the spaces visually, the beam was raised to be flush with the ceiling to create a flat ceiling punctuated with new recessed lighting. New enlarged casement windows and enlarged exterior window wells replaced the small clearstory basement windows to bring in more light and make the space feel less like a basement.

We designed and custom-built floor to ceiling millwork to house kids toys, computer workstations, books, entertainment equipment, flat screen TV, kids' outdoor clothes, sports' gear and utilities. This beautifully painted millwork was detailed to give a luxurious feel to a once purely utilitarian space.

In addition the new downstairs living space hosts, an overflow refrigerator & freezer, a laundry facility with cabinets and countertop to facilitate ease in household chores, cubbies for the Boys "stuff", lots of extra closet space, and a table and chairs where family members can gather for snacks and board games.

These are the types of projects, which yield abundant satisfaction on the part of our clients and our staff. When everyone can see such a dramatic gain in use of a leftover utility space crying out for attention, adding beauty, functionality, and a sense of peace and harmony to their everyday lives. What was once 'a basement' where things were "stored" to become forgotten and useless is now a well-lit, beautifully carpeted family gathering space with easy access from an ample staircase. Essentially utilizing abandoned space as an "addition" to the house, adding very high value for the money spent.

Photographer: Andy Ramirez