How’d that Granddaddy of all aqua-toned beach houses in Lafitte’s Cove stand up to Hurricane Ike? Joni Webb — who after Verandah magazine is perhaps the home’s greatest fan — shows off some recent pics of the once-grand weekend showcase on her blog, Cote de Texas:
It is here, today, almost a year after Ike, still languishing empty and neglected – a sort of sad, upscale Grey Gardens of Galveston. I’m not sure why it hasn’t been repaired – it all seems like minor, superficial damage, certainly nothing on a par with the slaughter of the Live Oaks going on uptown. But, still, the house has been left to the elements – something that on the beach should always be avoided. Maintenance is a must in the salt air. A loyal Cote de Texas reader happened upon the Aqua House and took new pictures for me.
The home, decorated in all its much-copied aqua glory by Houston designer Babs Watkins, was sold by a later owner shortly before the hurricane hit last year. And then?
Houston interior designer Babs Watkins’s ur-Aqua Beach House in Galveston, featured in a summer issue of Veranda magazine shortly after the home was completed in 2004, is now on HAR, notes Joni Webb:
The beach house generated quite a stir as it was knock-out gorgeous and was furnished with wonderful, painted antiques instead of typical tacky, beachy, white wicker. The most alluring aspect of the house was the color aqua used throughout. Aqua was everywhere, aqua floors, aqua fabrics, aqua furniture, aqua mirrors. Without a doubt, owing to how memorable this beach house was, it started a trend for Veranda: each summer since this home has graced the cover, Veranda has featured another aqua beach house. Obviously they are trying to top Watkins’ version, but in my opinion, the torch has not been passed. Watkins’ work remains the best of all the Veranda “Aqua Beach Houses.“
Webb finds not much has changed about the house since it was featured, but does note some surprises. The HAR photos show . . . a pool table! And a huge open Kitchen that looks onto to the living space! And a curvy banquette and ottoman covered with a woven palm-tree-print fabric on the opposite side of the Kitchen counter. And . . . lots of floral prints in the Master Bedroom. And many more not-ready-for-Veranda moments hidden from shelter-magazine gawkers. But Webb isn’t so fussy herself:
It certainly is everything one would want in a second home, if, of course, you have a couple of cool millions. . . . In fact, this is the second time it has been listed. It’s held up pretty well, and is remarkably still “photo ready” for a second shoot which is amazing for a beach house considering the wear and tear they take.
The 6-bedroom, 6-and-2-half-bath house is on the canal side of Laffite’s Cove, and sprawls over three lots. The asking price is $2.1 million, but you may be too late to buy it: It’s listed as “Pending Continue to Show.” After the jump: a few pics from HAR, before they’re disappeared!