Islanders spent years turning their home into an indoor-outdoor mecca
Over the past two decades, Mike and Trish McDaniel’s Denver Court home has evolved and grown. The McDaniels have added rooms, removed walls, erected a second floor and created an indoor-outdoor mecca for their enjoyment.
It helps that Mike is a contractor, although he concedes other people’s projects sometimes took precedence over his home.
“It was a project,” said Mike, reflecting on what the house looked like when they bought it. “It was amazing what we had to go through to get it like it is today.”
The two-story, 5,000-square-foot house is perfect for entertaining. All the “public” spaces are on the ground floor and the more private and personal spots — bedrooms, offices, bathrooms — are upstairs.
When visitors enter the house into a gray foyer, an intricate winding staircase is the first thing they see. It is simply decorated with a large wooden coat tree and mirror and a small settee under the stairs. Artworks — much of it created by local artists and close friends — hang in the entryway, as well as on every wall in each room.
The oversized living room, with a sizable fireplace as its focal point, accommodates a long couch that had belonged to Trish’s grandmother, and several chairs surround it for serious conversations. On one wall hangs a handmade quilt in blues and whites that took Trish more than a year to make. On the far wall of the living room are windows — lots of them — with a view of the yard, the garden and the pool, showcasing the outdoor space the couple use as much as they do the inside rooms. The coffee table in front of the couch actually was an antique ship’s hatch, mounted on a wrought-iron frame and rescued from Trish’s father’s West Texas home.
The dining room, painted red, is a real standout in the house. The wood table, which belonged to Mike’s mom when she lived on Galveston’s East End, is long and graceful. Four leaves are inserted into the table to make it long enough to comfortably seat a dozen people.
“There have been many happy poker games around this table,” Trish said. “I painted the walls red because I like that color. It is happy and good luck.”
The kitchen, probably the heart of the house, is large and well appointed. A huge island in the center houses the gas stove cooktop and bookshelves filled with bowls, pots, books and art. In the corner, a large walk-in pantry accommodates the storage and stowing of appliances for the room. A smaller peninsular bar separates the kitchen from the comfortable family room, with a large TV, a couch and easy chairs and more bookshelves and interesting, eclectic art, including a photo of Mike with chest-length hair in his younger days.
All the floors in the downstairs of the house are wood except in the family room, which is tiled. Behind the family room in a little nook is Mike’s turf: the bar. He laments that it might be a bit small — it becomes a bottleneck during parties and event. But he likes the size it is now, he said.
“If it was larger, I would have to stock it and that gets expensive,” he said.
The eye-catching item in the family room and bar is the wall of French doors overlooking the yard and pool — again giving spectacular views of the outside.
Trish, who is a Galveston County Master Gardener, tends to the garden, where she grows a large variety of plants, flowers, trees and other vegetation, from eucalyptus to many types of succulents, vegetables and cactus. A large, heated pool in the center of the yard is used daily by Trish and a small group of friends, called the Mermaids, who gather daily for an hour-long water aerobics class.
Upstairs are three bedrooms, an office and an exercise room, with windows that face the courtyard and pool.
“This house was made for entertaining and we have hosted many events over the years,” Trish said.
The couple noted the house is sturdy, and during Hurricane Ike in 2008, there was barely any water on the street and none in their home.
“This house is in a perfect location on the island — high and dry,” Mike said. “Just two minutes from the seawall by bike and maybe five minutes walking.
“It’s quiet here and that’s what we like,” he said.