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Designing Your Vacation Home 101

Designing-Your-Vacation-Home-101 In the dead of summer in Arizona, it’s all too easy to find yourself daydreaming about being somewhere cooler, and the idea of a vacation home may sound tempting. Luckily, if you live in the valley, you’re just a few hours from several desirable places to escape to including: the snowy mountains of Flagstaff, red rocks of Sedona, and sandy beaches of Southern California.

Any one of these gorgeous locations is ideal for your new home away from home. And while you’re busy picking out the perfect location, let our team at Imperial Elite assist you in designing your perfect escape from reality.

Although everyone has their own individual style, when thinking of the features that an ideal vacation home must have, people generally have a combination of the following themes in mind:
  • Comfort
  • Space
  • Quiet
  • Luxury
  • Escape
Your vacation home is a place purely intended for your enjoyment so feel free to be as indulgent and unique as you want when it comes to its design. Whether you select a serene, minimalistic space high in the mountains, a bold and colorful seafront escape on the beach, a rugged and adventurous cabin in the forest, or a quiet, simplistic home on the lake—your vacation home should reflect your unique taste and desires.

While keeping these central themes in mind, our team at Imperial Elite dreamed up four different styles of vacation homes that’ll get the gears of your imagination turning.

Our top vacation home styles include:
  • Contemporary mountain home
  • Art Deco beach house
  • Rustic log cabin
  • Lakeside cottage
Ready to be inspired? Read on to learn more about each of these styles.

Contemporary mountain home


A contemporary home in the mountains is the perfect architectural style for someone who wants some headspace, as this style aims to connect the outdoors with the indoors. Contemporary architecture typically consists of floor-to-ceiling windows throughout the home, which brings in an abundance of natural light and gorgeous 360-degree views.

With an emphasis made on sustainability and energy efficiency, contemporary homes are truly built into the land. From the outside, they’re incredibly modern. The exterior creates a stunning contrast between the structure and the natural surroundings. The interior is also consistent with this impression, typically designed with minimalistic ideals in mind. The sleek surfaces, pointed edges, and elegant flooring allow you to enjoy simple modern comforts. While the floor-to-ceiling windows make it seem like you’re still in the midst of the outdoors.

If relaxing in a serene, infinity-edge pool while watching the sun rise from behind the mountains sounds like something you might enjoy, check out this Pinterest board of contemporary mountain homes for more design inspiration.

Art Deco beach house


When at the beach, you’re surrounded by rich colors and lively energy. And the perfect architectural style to complement this animated environment is Art Deco. Originated in France in the early 1900s, Art Deco heavily influenced the development of 1930s Hollywood architecture and the tropical pastel buildings of Miami Beach. Known for its rounded corners, stucco walls, and bold, colorful, geometric exteriors, this style simply belongs at the beach.

If you’re looking for a vacation home that stands out from the rest, Art Deco is the perfect solution for you. Its eclectic history allows you to be creative in your design ventures. To see what’s possible in terms of unique flooring, colorful wall paint, and extravagant furnishings, take the time to explore this Art Deco Interiors Pinterest board. Once you’ve established some concepts, come see us at Imperial Elite—our vast range of flooring, tile, and custom services can help bring your ideas to life.

Rustic log cabin


If you’re looking to escape from reality and channel your inner Henry David Thoreau, a log cabin may be your best bet. With a history typically associated with the early settlers of the United States, cabins tend to carry a feeling of nostalgia and simplicity. However, with the advanced architectural technology available today, your log cabin vacation home can be as traditionally simple or as elaborate as you’d like.

Normally found in cooler forest environments, log cabins are meant to make you feel secure and cozy. They’ll protect you from the sometimes harsh outdoors and wildlife, and give you a warm space to spend time alone or with loved ones. Generally built entirely of wood, the interior of cabins can be adorned with natural stone fireplaces and accents to complement the already rustic nature.

If you want your cabin to stand out, get creative with your choice of natural stone—our selection is the largest in Arizona, and we just rolled out a brand new collection of Rustica stones from all over the world that’ll be perfect for this project.

Lakeside cottage


Nothing says simplicity more than the lake. The lake allows you to enjoy the soothing ambiance of water without facing the planning required for a big trip to the beach. At the lake you’ll see a combination of cottages and cabins, but for your vacation home, we’re recommending the former because of the all-around design simplicity cottages embody.

Cottages are typically made of stone, wood, or brick. The bright exterior of cottages look best when they’re overgrown with flowers and plant life. Your lakeside cottage could boast a lovely porch facing the water, attached to a deck that extends out for easy boat and swimming access. On the interior, the approach is simple—a peaceful space to rest your head at night after a long day of enjoying the outdoors.

Getting started


When it comes to designing your vacation home, we want the end result to be something that’s unique to you, and we hope this article will start to give you an idea of what you like. If you’re looking for another approach but don’t know where to start, check out this gallery of architectural styles for more inspiration.

Through our Elite service, we’ve had years of experience designing custom, luxury interiors of all kinds, made with pieces from all over the world. Contact us to find out what kind of paradise we can create together.