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Palmetto Bluff Paradise

LOWCOUNTRY HOME CONTEMPORARY LIVING

STORY BY DEAN ROWLAND | PHOTOS BY ROB KAUFMAN 

You can find Refuge Street deep in nature’s heart of Palmetto Bluff amid pine, oak and saw palmetto trees and manicured lawns with the May River as a stunning backdrop.

It’s a piece of earthly paradise and home to northerners Andrea Gluck and Jimmy South; more specifically, their three-story, 4,000-square-foot contemporary Lowcountry home with all the finishing touches. It has four bedrooms, a bunk room and six bathrooms.

They recently moved into their newly built home that blends traditional and contemporary Lowcountry design elements with a dash of eclectic touches.

“It’s a contemporary Lowcountry house with traditional bones,” said Lukejohn Dickson, an interior designer at Pl Home, formerly known as Plantation Interiors that was founded on Hilton Head in 1972. He and his wife, Amy, are also co-owners of LaSource Living.

“We mixed interesting materials,” homeowner Gluck said. “For example, we have reclaimed 200-year-old natural barnwood oak floors on the first two floors that we left really rustic. And we mixed that with Turkish mold shiplap and Savannah grey brick, which is traditional Lowcountry.”

Their kitchen, however, stands alone in any design vernacular.

“Our kitchen is almost contemporary,” said Gluck, whose partner and she are both retired from law enforcement careers. “We have a massive mantle piece in our kitchen with two towers — refrigeration/freezer systems, on either side of the stove. We used some gold tones in our hardware and plumbing.

So, mixing those materials gave us contemporary Lowcountry.”

A 4-foot trough stretches across the sink with a movable colander and cutting board.

A large wooden island dressed up in painted distressed black is surrounded by all new appliances with Old World touches.

The couple found a unique 300-year-old door from a container ship in Egypt that is positioned off the kitchen, shielding a pantry.

“It’s a peg system, no nails,” she said. “All mortise and pegs, and we left it in its raw condition — and Jimmy made it into a barn door.”

“The kitchen is exquisite, classic and beautiful with a big black island, white cabinets with a gorgeous hood and a fireplace that’s beautifully trimmed with shiplap,” Dickson said. “You’re right in it. The living space and kitchen space are on view to the whole world. It’s very inviting; no pomp and circumstance.”

It’s really no surprise that the kitchen is Gluck’s favorite room.

“It’s pretty special,” she added.

Upstairs the couple enjoys their comfortable 400-square-foot office with 14-foot ceilings. “We went very bold with it and painted it a dark, dark blue,” she said. “It looks beautiful with the old wood floors. We had to be very brave to paint it this color.”

There are large balconies in the front and back with three sets of glass French doors on the bottom and top. One adjoins the master bedroom.

Charlestonian home design comes to mind.Outside there’s a screened porch with an outdoor kitchen and fireplace, a perfect Lowcountry setting for entertaining.

The home features no traditional front or rear entrances.

“One of the interesting things about the house is it doesn’t have a traditional rear entry,” Dickson said.

“When you walk through the front door, you walk into the living room; to the right is the dining table, to the left is the fireplace and straight ahead is the kitchen. It’s all one big open space,” Gluck said.

“The nice thing about the house is you feel grounded in tradition and quality, but you don’t feel stuck in the past because everything is current, contemporary or new, and is not to be confused with modern,” Dickson said.

Some of the traditional detailing has been updated for more contemporary aesthetics, he said. “The roof, front and back porches, and trim work, especially the finishes.”

VENDORS

Architect: g2 Design
Builder: Level 5 Builders
Cabinetry: LaSource Living
Countertops: LaSource Living
Lighting: Plantation Interiors
Appliances: LaSource Living
Flooring: Ziel’s Antique Flooring
Plumbing and Hardware: LaSource Living