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Renovating an Ugly Duckling

September 1, 2004
by root
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How a facility was transformed from forlorn to fabulous by Richard McClellan

Private dining. Our inspiration for this space came from the first Meadow Glen in Leesburg. There, an old farmhouse was preserved, including the original dining room, which was set aside for families to use for birthdays or other private occasions. In this facility, we took an unused interior room, gutted it, and re-created an attractive dining/meeting space that is reminiscent of nearby Williamsburg (figure 6).

Now that we have completed our renovation of this truly ugly duckling property, we have begun to see swans (appropriately enough) gracing a nearby pond. Families flock here, too, to see the transformation for themselves, and many have decided to have loved ones stay with us.

Historically, this is the third opening of this residence. Is the third time the charm, as the old saying goes? We think it is. Figure 1. Before: the building's exterior landscaping was bleak and uninviting. Figure 2. Before: The dining room was a stark setting. Figure 3. One of the former living rooms was redesigned as a comfortable library. Photograph by Lee Brauer Photography. Figure 4. The newly enclosed porch serves as a relaxing gathering place with a wonderful view and conversation areas. Photograph by Lee Brauer Photography. Figure 5. Beneath a gallery of 1940s-era Hollywood stars, residents can enjoy some pampering. Photograph by Lee Brauer Photography. Figure 6. An unused space was converted to a private dining setting. Photograph by Lee Brauer Photography.
Richard McClellan is managing partner of Meadow Glen of Richmond. For further information, phone (703) 404-2546 or visit For more information on Bibelot Interiors, e-mail To comment on this article, please send e-mail to For reprints in quantities of 100 or more, call (866) 377-6454.