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    Chairma featured on Houzz "40 Exquisite Bathrooms From Around the World"

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    Chairma delivers dream kitchen to Katy family

    Steven Tramonte stands at his Thermador range and grins like a kid in a candy store.

    This is where he makes heavy pans of lasagna, nurtures tender meatballs and occasionally fries up a batch of doughnuts, just like his mother did when he was young.

    It's right here - at the island in the middle of his kitchen- where the husband and father of two holds court. The Thermador's six burners and long griddle are filled with pots and pans when Tramonte is in full-chef mode.

    "Spending a whole day cooking, as long as I've got wine or beer and some music going, I'm perfectly fine. I would be on my feet all day doing that," he said.

    Tramonte and his wife, Candie, built their home in Katy's Cinco Ranch in 2008 thinking that the floor plan they chose was just what they wanted.

    After a decade of living in it, they knew exactly what they needed to change.

    Powder bathrooms: This tiny room is getting more attention in home remodeling projects.

    The kitchen was separated from their living room by a wall with arched openings and columns, which made it a little difficult to move between the two spaces. The small in-kitchen pantry didn't quite serve their needs, and the breakfast nook in the back was so isolated that it felt like meals were being eaten in a place you'd be sent for a time-out.

    Dining room and living room decorating projects and a backyard upgrade that added a summer kitchen and pool were already behind them.

    They were saving this project because they knew it would be bigger, more costly and more disruptive.

    Candie Tramonte spent hours on Houzz.com searching for designers and homes, looking at kitchen after kitchen. She found Cindy Aplanalp-Yates of Chairma Design Group, who ultimately had them renovate their kitchen and breakfast nook and use more than 100 square feet of garage space for a jaw-dropping pantry big enough to also provide office space for Candie.

    Before, slate flooring, black granite counters and dark-stained cabinets combined for a heavy look. It's not that their kitchen wasn't nice - it was just dated and dark.

    Getting to their now-gleaming bright and light new space began with a complete gut job to their kitchen, breakfast nook and a 9-foot-by-12-foot portion of the three-car garage.

    "I love working in kitchens. So many great things happen in the kitchen - everyone congregates there," Aplanalp-Yates said of the project.

    For the three months of renovation, a big tarp hung where their kitchen once began. Candie Tramonte set up an ingenious temporary kitchen in the laundry room, creating a makeshift pantry using hanging closet shelving to store food and learning to cook exclusively using a slow cooker and a microwave.

    They moved their kitchen table and refrigerator to the foyer and washed dishes in the outdoor kitchen.

    "It would probably be a problem for other people, but we did it. I don't think the kids even remember that we didn't have a kitchen for three months," the laid-back mom said of 10-year-old daughter, Mia, and 7-year-old son, Tanner.

    Part of the construction required adding an 18-foot support beam to handle the load previously held up by the columns. Three small vertical windows over the kitchen sink turned into one much larger window that looks into the backyard and the neighborhood green space beyond.

    Creamy white porcelain tile replaced the dark slate on the floor, and in place of the black granite counters is now a durable gray-white quartz. Cantilevered light fixtures and beautiful window treatments polish it all off.

    "Marble is beautiful, but I knew it would not work for them," Alplanalp-Yates said. "It needed to support their lifestyle instead of getting in their way. I didn't want them to worry about red wine spills."

    When the pantry became a whole room of its own, the Tramontes found themselves with space for so much more than food and shelving. That's where they moved their original appliances to make room for the high-end appliance package - the range with a Thermador dishwasher, vent hood and refrigerator - to be installed in the new kitchen.

    Shifting things around was part of Aplanalp-Yates' strategy to get the most out of every inch in the house.

    "I'm always looking for space that can be better utilized. What's in your garage? Bikes you don't use, camping equipment you don't use," she said.

    Candie Tramonte chimed in: "It made us smarter about how we store our junk."

    That out-of-the-way breakfast nook now is a hot spot for gathering. Instead of an ordinary round table and chairs, a smart banquette wraps around three sides of a table, finished with two upholstered chairs. All of it is covered in family-friendly, stain-proof Sunbrella fabric.

    Drawers at each end of its base hold the kids' things; Mia has a drawer full of slime jars.

    "Everything we did was keeping in mind we have elementary-school-aged kids," she said. "We just don't have time to baby countertops or to make sure that your kid's not spilling juice or making their slime over there. I've got tons of slime. My daughter is obsessed with it."

    Originally published on Houston Chronicle

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    Guest Suite at the 2017 ASID Designer Show House

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    2017 Star Awards - Remodeler - Best Addition

    Chairma Design Group and Charanza Contracting, Inc., Houston, TX 
    Remodeler - Best Addition - $250K - $500K 

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    2017 Star Award Winners - Remodeler- Best Kitchen Renovation

    Chairma Design Group and Charanza Contracting, Inc., Houston, TX 
    Remodeler - Best Kitchen Renovation - $100K - $250K 

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    2017 Star Award Winners - Remodeler - Best Whole House Renovation

    Chairma Design Group and Morning Star Builders, Houston, TX 
    Remodeler - Best Whole House Reno. - Attached Home - Under $500K

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    Featured in Houston Design Resources 2017

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    Luxe Interiors & Design

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    Luxe Interiors & Design

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    Design 2017 (Luxe Interiors & Design)

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