Prime Real Estate
Oozing upscale European charm and just steps away from the Eagle Bahn Gondola, a vail condo has it all
Fresh paint, refinished kitchen cabinets, and a neutral off-white and taupe palette peppered with blue and smoky plum accents reinvigorated a three-bedroom condo in Vail, Colorado. A mixed genre of furnishings topped with plush fabrics and accented by a bold contemporary art collection make for a welcoming après-ski locale.
Location: The Arrabelle at Vail Square Vail, Colorado
Size: 2,400 sq. ft. | 3 bedrooms
Jeffrey Elliott, Jeffrey P. Elliott Interior Design, Denver, CO
Pretty much everyone has heard the real estate mantra “location, location, location.” For urbanites the term might suggest a penthouse suite with proximity to museums; country dwellers would infer it to mean wooded acreage with nearby amenities.
For Garth Yettick, a portfolio manager in Denver, prime locale was all about effortless ski-in, ski-out options, walking-distance dining possibilities, a nearby top-notch gym and spa, and a well-appointed place to put up your feet after a blue-sky powder day.
He pretty much found them all at the Arrabelle at Vail Square—but the last item was somewhat lacking. “I bought a furnished condo that had been on the market for quite a while, and the ambience wasn’t something that would appeal to younger people,” says Yettick, noting the resort complex more than delivered on the rest of his wish list. “Everything was a little stodgy.”
It was the same word his interior designer Jeffrey Elliott used to describe the three-bedroom unit. Plagued by heavily draped windows and oppressively ornate furnishings, the condo was unquestionably in need of a total redo. “It needed a clean-lined aesthetic and a contemporary personality,” says Elliott, who began by repainting every surface and freshening the dark-brown alder kitchen cabinets with lighter tones of taupe and gray. A new bronze backsplash, a coat of taupe paint over the existing wood fireplace mantel, and light- colored flat-weave carpets established the new backdrop and a more youthful direction.
Like much of the architecture in Vail—built in the 1960s to resemble a Bavarian village—the exterior of the Arrabelle continues that tradition. And while Elliott admits to being influenced by the look of grand European hotels, he had something less fussy in mind when reshaping the condo. “We sought a simple, casual take,” he says. “I wanted it to look more contemporary Scandinavian than traditional Bavarian.”
In the living room, the look is all about texture— boucle on the sofa, mohair on the armchair and a cerused oak coffee table—and intentional genre blending. “People tend to think modern is too cold and traditional isn’t young enough, so I like a mix,” says Elliott, pointing to the metal-framed leather side chair with its twill- covered wingback, and a pair of vinyl-topped metal stools circa 1970, that all contentedly hang together. “Mixing keeps everyone happy.”
The intermingling continues in the dining room, where rattan chairs—a Scandinavian nod, with leather backs and boucle seats—surround a glass table, and the sleek Mark Albrecht light fixture is unabashedly modern. And while the great room has a grander, more masculine feel, the master suite with its flourish of smoky plum drapes encircling the faceted bay window sitting area has a softer emphasis. “The window is so charming I thought, why not add a little more romance with drapery and some pattern,” recalls Elliott, who included two plush armchairs and an upholstered bed as luxury touches.
While the designer describes the prevailing color scheme as taupe, off-white and sand, the homeowner’s affection for French artist Yves Klein, whose monochromatic paintings spawned an eponymous hue known in design circles as “Klein Blue,” inspired the inclusion of
like-colored accents. “I visited his namesake museum in Nice,” says Yettick; he further complemented the indigo tones with two George Rodrigue paintings featuring the artist’s iconic “Blue Dog.”
A pair of Robert Burnier wall sculptures and a Tim Yankowsy piece fashioned from vintage measuring tapes perched above the fireplace are part of the larger collection at home in the eclectic surroundings.
“Everything really came to life as various accent colors and touches were added,” enthuses the happy homeowner. “It’s updated and chic, and it just feels good to be there.”