Aubuchon Homes’ new Carleton model is situated just a few miles from the lush, historic Edison and Ford Winter Estates of famous friends Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. The neighborhood in downtown Fort Myers not only holds an interesting historical story, but it also fuels the architecture and design of this Grand Aurora Award-winning model.
“Stylistically we wanted to pay tribute to the history of the area, but at the same time introduce something fresh and different,” shares Gary Aubuchon, partner of Aubuchon Homes. This upscale West Indies-inspired home is full of both intrigue and style that undoubtedly stands up to the history of its surrounding community.
Aubuchon Homes’ Director of Architectural Design Mike McKiddie prioritized indoor and outdoor living and designed this West Indies home so it embodies an “it has always been there vibe,” he says. Symmetry steers the design front-to-back and side-to-side. The front entry’s walnut French doors — visible from the street — sit between a courtyard drive that buffers the home from the road. The bright white stucco, warm gray tile roof, vibrant bougainvillea, exotic palms, and rubber trees evoke the inspiration that hails from Edison’s historical stamp on the area. Even though the post-and-beam construction gives the illusion of period accuracy, this high-tech “smart house” is a marvel of modern creation.
Lead interior designer Diana Daniel of Evalutions by Aubuchon invents an adventurous family, who at the turn of the twentieth century — Edison’s era — travels far-and-wide, returning to their coastal winter home just like Edison. “You could visualize the family came by boat and could see the special artifacts or furnishings they would return with from far off regions,” Daniel elaborates. All of this, Daniel says, creates an “interesting culture to be inspired by,” so each color decision, furniture selection, and accent piece is chosen with that story-in-mind. Daniel weaves deep marine and warm walnut hues into the bright-white palette and infuses the design with spirited zebra prints, organic textures, and subtle geometric forms to introduce subliminal modern design elements. All the natural wood finishes in the home vary slightly in hue, adding to the idea of gathering special pieces from around the world. For Daniel, winning a Grand Aurora on this project is a “true highlight” of her career.
“When you look at The Carleton, it will be hard for future generations to judge the timeframe it was built in since we used timeless features,” says Aubuchon. The Aubuchon team flawlessly blends the inspiring Fort Myers’ history with a fresh and exciting spin on the West Indies style, making this home an “instant classic,” states Aubuchon — and thus putting their own Aubuchon Homes’ stamp on history.
*Feature cover image: The home’s crisp white façade makes the marine and natural wood accents pop. The roof — finished with a three-gray-blend — imitates the look of handmade clay tiles. Authentic walnut French doors open to the outdoor living space, honoring traditional West Indies style while creating a timeless ambiance.
Written by Rachel Seekamp
Photography by Barry Milligan
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