Arroyo Grande home remodel updates kitchen, bathrooms

Nathan Law

The remodel of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house began with an accident. A water leak in 2018 turned a section of their deeply-hued Saltillo tile floor a ghastly white. Unable to find matching replacement tiles, they scrapped the idea of patching and took the leap into a full-scale […]

The remodel of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house began with an accident.

A water leak in 2018 turned a section of their deeply-hued Saltillo tile floor a ghastly white. Unable to find matching replacement tiles, they scrapped the idea of patching and took the leap into a full-scale remodel.

“We weren’t planning on remodeling until 2026, but we were going to need to move walls and we didn’t want to replace the floors twice,” Jovita Honor explained.

2026 is their target for retiring from their Silicon Valley jobs and moving to Arroyo Grande.

The couple bought the house in 2016. Currently, Jovita Honor’s parents live there and the Honors visit frequently.

From the start, they knew the early 1990s-built home would need a major remodel.

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A countertop with a waterfall edge offers extra seating in the remodeled kitchen of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house. Emily Elise Photography

A style makeover was in order, but their primary goal was to create a multi-generational space that would accommodate both couples as well as visiting family.

They assembled their team: interior designer Ariana Lovato of Honeycomb Home Designs of Pismo Beach, Cynthia Munoz of Bay Area firm Stoecker and Northway Architects, and general contractor Stuart Hawkes Construction of Grover Beach.

The two-story, 3,000-square-foot house featured Spanish architecture and an interior that Lovato calls “‘80s style” with yellow walls, dark countertops and worn white-painted cabinetry. The kitchen and dining room were laid out awkwardly, making entertaining a challenge.

The project, which took place January through September 2019, completely revamped the kitchen and updated every bathroom.

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The dining room table seats 12 with extensions in Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house. Emily Elise Photography

A new guest powder room replaced an oversized kitchen pantry.

The dining room, once situated in an awkward alcove, is now part of the great room and is large enough for 12 diners.

The former dining room alcove became an office that doubles as a guest bedroom.

Although the kitchen footprint shrunk slightly, it functions better because it “uses every space much more efficiently,” Honor said.

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The new office of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house doubles as a guest bedroom. Emily Elise Photography

Knowing her extended family would frequently cook together, Honor worked with Lovato to incorporate hardworking features such as a 48-inch range top with a double griddle and pot filler.

An oversized sink has two faucets and a cutting board accessory. Smart storage, such as built-in trash and recycling, keep floors and countertops clear.

Their first design choice for the kitchen informed the style direction of the entire house.

The couple had wanted a high-end tile set in a fan motif for their master bathroom. But when budget constraints put a halt to that idea, they decided to use a smaller portion of it for their backsplash.

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The fan motif backsplash tile influenced color and style choices throughout Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house. Emily Elise Photography

Its blue color is now the primary accent hue in their otherwise light and bright home.

Blue was a good choice, Lovato said, because of how it complements the new engineered acacia wood flooring.

The tile’s fan motif influenced Art Deco accents throughout the house, including geometric patterns in the custom front doors and wainscoting.

The design team’s contemporary interpretation of Art Deco plays up the home’s best features: its high ceilings, straight lines and natural light.

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The dining room, living room and kitchen flow together in the remodeled great room of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house, creating a space ideal for entertaining. Emily Elise Photography

“We decided to build on that,” said Lovato, adding that the understated Art Deco look utilizes “clean modern lines and tones.”

Simple, modern furniture, light gray walls and white trim and cabinetry create a calming backdrop for splashes of color and glam.

Chandeliers add sparkle to several rooms including the kitchen and dining room.

Wallpaper by Kravet brings elegance to the bathrooms — featuring a dramatic gold for the powder room and a more subdued, moisture-resistant vinyl wallpaper for the guest bath.

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High ceilings and natural light influenced the bright, contemporary style of the remodel of Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house. Emily Elise Photography

The expanding scope of the project came with an expanding budget which initially caught Honor, a financial advisor, off guard.

“I think I’ve been watching way too many home remodel shows where everything looks quick, easy and inexpensive,” she said. But the end result has convinced her of the value of the home remodel, and the couple has even started revamping the home’s exterior.

They now look at remodeling as an investment in their “forever home,” Honor said. “We’ve put our stamp on it. Now it’s really become our home.”

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Chandeliers throughout the house add touches of elegance in Jovita and Alex Honor’s Arroyo Grande house. Emily Elise Photography

Tips

Embrace wallpaper. Wallpaper is a fun way to add texture, color and pattern to a room. Vinyl wallpaper can even be used in high-moisture spaces such as bathrooms. And you can put the scrapers away; many of today’s wallpapers are removable and won’t damage your drywall if you decide to part ways with it later.

Modern art deco. For an updated art deco style, focus on bold shapes and patterns, but ditch the kitschy colors. An updated, simple color palette brings this look into the 21st century.

Sink smarts. If you frequently have multiple cooks, avoid pileups at the sink with more than one faucet. An oversized sink with two faucets allows for two people to prep or clean simultaneously. A pot filler next to the range eliminates the need to carry large pots to and from the sink.

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