The new Homeowners Edition of our blog will take a look at the inspiring interiors and exteriors of beautiful and innovative homes throughout the country. We’ll tour these charming places and speak with the homeowners directly. Why? Because insulating your home with InSoFast is only the first step in creating your dream home. The Homeowners Edition aims to inspire our readers to be creative, smart and innovative with their renovations.
Join us while we tour Sandy and David Clemons breathtaking Bed & Breakfast tucked away in the mountains of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. The homes elaborate detail and backstory may just inspire you to move forth with a few DIY renovations piling up on your list.
Last Fall our media team packed up for Coeur d’Alene, Idaho to document a large scale InSoFast UX 2.0 project in the works. Since InSoFast is all about the user experience, we decided try out Airbnb as a resource to book a stay in the tranquil Idahoan lake town. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Airbnb, it’s a handy new travel option that definitely falls under the category of “DIY at it’s best”. The online service provides it’s users with two different options. You can opt to utilize the site as a “host” in order to invite guests to stay in your home “bed and breakfast style” or you can make use of Airbnb for your very own vacation by booking a stay at someone’s home in 33,000 different cities throughout the world. It’s a great way for travelers to not only support the local community directly, but to also experience a uniquely intimate travel experience. For the host it’s a simple way to start up a bed and breakfast, make a supplemental income, and meet interesting people along the way.
We had a memorable experience staying at Sandy and David Clemons beautiful 6,000 square foot home in the mountains of Coeur d’Alene called, “Maison Du Coeur De Lion” aka: House of the Heart of the Lion. It was clear before we even arrived that our stay would be quite different from what may have been experienced at the local Best Western. Instead of stopping on the main road in town we continued onto a windy country back road that guided us deeper and deeper into the mountains. After passing multiple grazing deer and elk, we arrived at the Clemons’ home which sat nestled between layers of evergreen.
The exterior of the home boasted an interesting aesthetic combination of a traditional log cabin and Tudor Revival. “The house was initially built in the 1970’s as a log kit home” says Sandy, whose husband David initially found the home while he was out jogging in 1995. All that existed at this time was the original log kit structure. David eventually bought the house and began the redesign. As an artist, he had the ability to realize his elaborate visions for the home by utilizing his artistic sensibilities. The finished retrofit evokes a sense of timelessness with a blend of David’s art and a number of historical stylistic references.
“When you walk through the house you not only see the original logs, but you also see the details of David’s artwork such as the mosaic tiles throughout the house and the wood carvings on the fireplace and mantles. He also designed some of the couches and carved the wooden beams in the living room”, Sandy explained. Our media team found the living area to be the best room in the house to unwind after long days onsite at the Coeur d’ Alene InSoFast construction project. With it’s vaulted ceilings and elaborate wood carvings, sitting in the room felt almost like a flashback to the French Baroque era. The detailing of the log wall also added a coziness to the grandiose aesthetic, otherwise not associated with the dramatic stylings of the Baroque.
With the children in college and the most of the rooms empty, the Clemons decided to launch their Airbnb as a way to bring more life into their much adored home. While cooking us breakfast Sandy expressed that since she loves to host guests in her home, Airbnb was the perfect way to both make a supplemental income and launch a bed and breakfast the “DIY” way, much like the way their home renovations were handled. Over the past few months the Clemons have hosted guests from all over the world who have enjoyed the unique comforts and beautiful views of Maison Du Coeur De Lion. Upon walking onto the Clemons wrap around deck with magnificent views of the city, lake and forest it’s quite clear that at $65 a night, the experience is well worth the price.
Sandy and David are continuously working on different projects and renovations throughout the home. They have plans for a backyard greenhouse, which they of course will build themselves. After a bad experience with a contractor who caused a massive fire in the attic and basement, the Clemons stick true to their creative DIY roots. When discussing the fire Sandy said that, “In the attic the contractor chose to lean a beam right up against the fireplace vent with insulation around it. He didn’t put a barrier around the pipe and there was an accumulation of hot space that caused the insulation to catch fire in the attic. The fire dropped down the ventilation tube that traveled to the basement which spread the fire even more. David and I saw a tube of smoke flowing through the house and out of the fireplace. 37 fireman and 17 firetrucks came to fight the fire. We were out of the house for about 18 months” After the fire David researched, designed, and renovated the entire home all by himself.
Our Airbnb experience with Sandy and David exceeded our highest expectations. As DIY enthusiasts, InSoFast definitely suggests checking out Airbnb. You never know what inspiring stories you’ll hear from your homeowner hosts.
Thanks Sandy and David Clemons for a wonderful stay at your beautiful Bed & Breakfast. If you are interested in staying at “Maison Du Coeur De Lion” you can book your trip here or email the Clemons’ directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stay tuned for upcoming coverage on the Coeur d’Alene InSoFast project. We’ll talk with the architect Scott Fischer from Architects West and take a look at the actual construction site.