Many homes over time are beaten into submission through hard use and neglect, but they may not be the lost causes that one is prepared to condemn them to be. These homes may be outdated or even just broken, on varying levels, and naturally require the proper care they have neglected to see. A few helpful Band-Aids can eke out another decade or so of life, and a full-on and appropriate renovation can fully restore the structure for another four to five decades, thereby breathing new life into the neighborhood. Villa Nero was such a project.


Services provided

Planning, Architectural Design, Construction Documents, and Interior Design


Joe Clark


Indian Wells, CA

Villa Nero


Renovating buildings can present unique hurdles that can be avoided by new construction. Certainly, from an architectural perspective, it is much easier to start with a blank sheet of paper then analyzing what’s salvageable and what’s not, including structurally.


There are three general approaches to working with existing structures: preservation, renovation, or remodeling, and there is a significant difference in the definition of each. These three approaches can be distinguished by the degree of alteration [or destruction] of the existing structure considered permissible, and the amount of importance attached to historical purity.

The pre-Villa Nero was a 1950’s rat-infested, dog-urine saturated Rambler that sold as an as-is tear-down. It was beyond outdated; it was falling apart, and no-one saw the value in it except its new owner. The home happened to sit on two fairway lots in a gated community, and if it could be renovated, as oppose to ripped down and built anew, then both time and money could be saved. Well, at least that was the original thought. Funny how things tend not to work out as initially envisioned.