An Indoor Loft, a Secret Garden: Malina Project by B. Pila Design Studio

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Take whitewashed stone, high beamed ceilings, a living room with a loft window, plus a gorgeous tropical “secret garden” around a swimming pool, and what do you have? The Malina home by B. Pila Design Studio in Miami, Florida. Enter the home through a long sheltered passageway and modern frosted-glass doors, and you’ll encounter the living room featuring vivid modern art on the walls — and a triangular window up in the eaves. What’s below that window? A loft, surrounded by a partial see-through glass wall and backed by floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. Like a treehouse, it’s a clever hideaway that isn’t really hidden — especially not with the second-story “window” looking into it from the other side of the main floor, where a stone-blue wall holds a television and blue and lime-green accents liven up the family room.

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Slim, black, chrome-trimmed chairs in the dining room, an abstract on the wall, a collection of silvered bottles on the floor, and the repeat of the circle motif of the exterior door say “thoroughly modern,” but not harshly; even a cylindrical metal duct in the loft is chic rather than industrial, shining in a subtle gray. Likewise, the bedroom is a neutral palette of sand and cream, but with padded headboard and deep cushioned chairs, it’s more traditional than “uber-modern.” Probably the most successful meld of contemporary and “cozy,” however, is the outdoor living area. Viewed through vertical panes edged with mellow wood, it is lush with palms, tropical plants, and a stone-edged pool with cascading water at one end — a true “secret garden” getaway for the whole family. A fun blend of up-to-date design with sheer relaxation: that’s the Malina house by B. Pila.

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Written by Janet Butler

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Janet W. Butler is a freelance writer, editor, and editorial consultant by day and a “small soprano” by night. An RWA Golden Heart Winner, she is the author of the inspirational romance From the Ashes (“the best little book no one’s ever heard of”), published by SANDS Publishing in 2001; and a romantic suspense, Voice of Innocence, from Desert Breeze Publishing. She is a Chicago native transplanted to northeast Indiana, where she lives with her husband, daughter, and Cassandra “Trouble” Butler, S.R.C. (Spoiled Rotten Cat).

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