Much can be said about this very special home in Historic Riverside, California. Its important position is noted in old local newspaper articles as the first residence to be built starting 1915 and completed in 1917 in what was the the new Larchwood Tract. Fast forward this 107 year old neighborhood now affectionately known as “The Wood Streets” area is located close to historic downtown and The Mission Inn. A big part of the charm of this soft urban enclave are the large old trees that line streets appropriately named after different species of wood. These custom homes are mixes of old varied architectural styles and somehow this neighborhood has remained mostly intact. There are no modern homes, apartments, or multi-level mc mansions.
This home is a mix of architectural styles and not surprising to designers Hector Romero and Chris Obeji from Romero + Obeji Interior Design. They discovered that noted Riverside Architect Wilmer P. Lamar started designing this home about 1914. Documents describe it as a Spanish or Castilian style home. Spanish Revival was not quite established in 1914, but mission revival, Italianate and Craftsman were in vogue.
Designers Hector and Chris describe the architectural influences expressed in this home exterior as Italianate for the symmetry and clay tile roof eyebrows, Mission Revival due to the modest parapet walls, flat roof and brick arched façade. Craftsman style for the high-quality paned wood casement windows throughout the entire home.
The interior mill work is also Craftsman, which was the modern, post-Victorian design favored by many residential architects during this period.
It was 1915 when architects and designers developed and revealed true Spanish Revival at the San Diego Panama – California Exposition World’s Fair in which the interior experience mirrored the exterior architecture. That was the end of Spanish style homes with craftsman interiors.
When this project came to Romero + Obeji, they put carful thought into which design direction to go towards since the house is an architectural hybrid.
In the 80's the house had been completely remodeled, not restored. The original craftsman cabinetry and built-in buffet had been removed and replaced with red oak cabinetry and 80's subway tile.
As far as the flooring is concerned the entire home was like a flooring showroom with multiple surfaces including honey colored oak floors, laminate flooring, layers of vinyl in bath and kitchen areas and carpet.
The decision to take off layers of flooring and refinish original wood and add a 6" x 6" terracotta colored cement tiles in baths, laundry and kitchen was the perfect choice.