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- Holiday Buzz 2014
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Great Estate: Areta Bendo
A Grand Custom Home Designed for Living
In 1997, Areta Bendo’s patience had been handsomely rewarded. It was then that she was finally able to move her family from Middletown into her dream estate, nestled on a cul-de-sac in the Whispering Woods section of Holmdel.
From initial concept to completion, her nearly 8,000-square-foot custom brick and stone colonial was 31/2 years in the making. The final result was a magnificent California-inspired home, perfect for entertaining, with a spacious, open floor plan and an abundance of natural light. At every turn, Areta’s personality and attention to detail is reflected in her home. She carefully planned every aspect of the design – from the 14-zone radiant heating system to the 140 recessed graphic-eye lights to the dumbwaiter and laundry chute – with the comfort of her family in mind. The décor is a direct reflection of her aesthetic sense and awareness of social trends, and she has successfully integrated them all into her home and her life.
Even in the design and planning stages, Areta developed a deep, emotional attachment to her home. During that time, she never anticipated divorce, but over the past 7 1/2 years, she feels that she has successfully maintained a very loving, thriving, and happy home for herself and her two daughters (who are now in college), Christina and Alexis. Not wanting to leave her beautiful community that is filled with many close friends who have all been there to support her, Areta is thrilled that she has had the fortitude to remain in Holmdel and continue to enjoy all of the things that brought her here in the first place – the country landscapes, the nearby beaches, the top-notch educational system, the easy commute to New York City. This was her top priority.
Areta and her daughters never missed a beat and continue to share their home, celebrating good times with family and friends.
The stately feel of the home’s 120-foot, full brick and stone exterior is highlighted by blue slate steps with tiered, concrete balusters, Belgian block curbing, stunning landscaping with ornamental lighting, and a circular courtyard driveway.
Areta’s attraction to “grandness and greatness” is demonstrated by the foyer’s circular dome ceiling, featuring a custom medallion and chandelier, with an electric winch for easy accessibility.
A long, wide gallery with marble stone flooring and an arched 9-foot ceiling connects the east and west wings of the home.
Passing though the 8-foot custom double mahogany entry doors, guests are greeted in the grand foyer by a free-floating, curved staircase…also mahogany.
Areta’s daughters took lessons on this Steinway Boston Baby Grand Piano, that makes its home in the sunken library. It still gets plenty of use during holidays and gatherings.
In keeping with Areta’s flair for entertaining, special artisans and craftsmen were contracted to build the great room’s multi-level mahogany bar with granite top and walk-in wine room, as well as the recessed entertainment center that houses her 70-inch Mitsubishi television.
Walls of oversized windows that flood the room with natural light flank the large limestone fireplace.
This antique, goldleafed mirror, topped with a hand-painted cameo, is just one of a number of design elements that once belonged to Areta’s grandparents.
Each of the home’s six bedrooms is a suite. Areta’s suite is the crown jewel, with a sitting room and two walk-in closets. The master bath features marble tile floor and walls, an Aquatic® Jacuzzi-style tub in a marble platform, and a walk-in shower room with five Jado body sprayers.
The large, open kitchen and adjoining breakfast area truly make up the home’s hub. Family and friends gather for food and fun around the granite-topped center island, while the meals are prepared using professional-grade Sub-Zero and Dacor appliances.
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