Tom Roof and his wife Nicole transitioned their St. Louis-based architecture firm and founded the design-build firm TRX Architects + Constructors at the lake of the Ozarks in 2011. Tom is an architect and builder who has designed magnificent high-rises, and designs and builds exquisite custom homes.
The couple found one of their favorite Lake homes for sale several years after first touring the home in 2011. It was built in 2000 by Matt Duenke for a bachelor who apparently had an affinity for the color orange. Every bit of maple cabinetry in the house was stained that color. But Tom felt confident he could work his magic and transform it into their perfect home. In 2016, Tom and Nicole purchased the house and began renovations.
The gated driveway makes a sweeping curve ending at a three-car garage. Tom added a two-car detached garage that he is in the process of making his man cave. The home’s neutral-color stucco façade features several square columns that flank each garage door and frame the front door. Along with the columns, the low slope of the roof gives the home a British West Indies vibe. The front door, which plays off the design of the garage doors, is flanked by two gas-burning wall lanterns.
The maple door opens into the stunning foyer with its square pillars and a limestone floor adorned with embedded black granite squares. Stepping down into the living room, the West Indies influence continues with a nod to Industrial chic furnishings giving it a clean contemporary feel. Maple flooring outlines inlaid wool carpeting, and the gorgeous open wood ceiling is stained tongue-and-groove poplar.
Tom built a half wall separating the once open-concept living room/dining room. “In order to make the living room more livable, we needed a television,” he says. He concealed the TV inside the half wall, and it can be raised and lowered by remote control. The living room furniture includes a coffee table built with a repurposed wood top and rebar struts as the base. A see-through gas fireplace on one wall can also be enjoyed in Nicole’s office.
A semicircular couch in the back of the room faces floor-to-ceiling windows offering a spectacular view of the Lake. “We call this the East-West room,” Tom says. “We can sit on the sofa and watch the sun rise in the morning, then watch it set at night.”
The central feature of the dining room is a distressed wood-top table atop a concrete base. Eight wood-and-fabric chairs surround the table.
Most of the main floor required only painting and updated lighting. But the kitchen was another story. Originally a small, galley-style kitchen, Tom completely gutted it and the laundry room behind it, but saved the orange cabinets to repurpose. The magnificent new kitchen features an L-shape bar and a separate prep island with a farm sink. The countertops and one wall are made of quartzite—metamorphic rock formed when sandstone has been exposed to high temperatures and pressure.
All the appliances are stainless steel, and the four-burner Wolf range has a central griddle with dual ovens below. Adjacent to a recessed appliance garage is a Wolf warming drawer, microwave drawer, convection/steam oven and a Miele coffee system in the built-in appliance stack. There is a double door Subzero refrigerator/freezer and even a niche beside the sink for the paper towel holder.
Walnut cabinets and several drawers below the bar and island stained a dark brown provide plenty of storage. Off the kitchen is a walk-in pantry with open steel-framed shelves with ladders to access the upper shelves, and also a washer/dryer stack. The floor is honed limestone that matches the polished limestone bordering the main hallway. Floating shelves above the range, white leather stools at the bar and pendant lights complete the kitchen area.
The focal point of the adjacent lounge/game room is a Herman Miller design pool table with bright blue felt. “When entertaining there’s always a gathering in the kitchen,” Tom says, “so having a pool table and bar immediately adjacent, while not conventional, certainly is purposeful.” Above the pool table is a freeform tray ceiling with cove lighting, and one wall is home to a wood-burning fireplace below a large flat-screen TV. Another sociable touch is the semicircular bar with a granite top that accommodates three denim club chairs.
Off the lounge is a screen porch. Tom took what was once an open concrete deck and extended the existing steel rails to support a roof, then screened it in. “We custom-built a fire pit to match the Indies-style wood privacy wall we erected at the end of the porch,” Tom explains. The ceiling is stained tongue-and-groove pine, and the flooring is Kronos porcelain pavers with a drainage system beneath. A curved metal stairway leads to the pool patio below.
Nicole’s home office is next to the living room. The minimalist birds’-eye curved wood desk faces a bank of floor-to-ceiling windows set into a curved wall. Built-in shelves were repainted to match, and a unique light fixture offers a little whimsy. A central mesh cylinder holds the lightbulb, and a starburst of silver arms sprout from the cylinder with several note cards with written messages attached at various points. “It came from the manufacturer like that, and Nicole has personalized it with inspirational notes and pictures,” Tom says.
Ribbon glass framed in wood doors open into the master suite. The tray ceiling is stained tongue-and-groove poplar, and a sitting area near floor-to-ceiling windows features plantation shutters. Two hand-hammered metal sinks and blue lapis granite countertops are highlights in the master bath, as are a steam shower featuring decorative glass blocks, an oval soaking tub and a private water closet.
Square maple posts and railings continuing the West Indies feel lead to the lower floor, where there are three bedrooms with three en suite baths. The fourth bedroom Tom converted to a home gym, with one wall covered with floor-to-ceiling mirrors. The room is filled with state-of-the-art fitness equipment and weights, and the flooring is interlocking rubber tiles.
In the bedrooms, Tom removed all the existing carpeting and replaced it with Berber. The remaining areas are covered with luxury vinyl plank (LVP) flooring that looks like wood but is completely waterproof.
A second laundry room on this level shares a bathroom with one of the guest bedrooms. It has convenient access to the pool and features a swimsuit dryer.