By Jessica Ingram
Photography by Marc Gibson

[dropcap]I[/dropcap]n the secluded woods of one of Benton’s rising new subdivisions lies a stately, white home with grey shutters and wooden pillars resting on waterfront property. The main house is seamlessly bridged to the guest home by a wooden porte-cochere that leads to an outdoor entertainment wonderland.

There is a large parking area for the family cars and recreational vehicles. A pool embellished with a Mediterranean and turquoise blue tile gives a feel of swimming in paradise and the view of Black Bayou is one to be rivaled. The Nix family is currently in the process of building their family’s boat house, Pelican Pier, that will have a full-functioning kitchen, bar and entertainment area.

Michael and Candice Nix’s family home was completed in January after seven months of planning with their architect, Jack Crawford. They also worked with builder Jimbo Davlin with Lighthouse Construction. Customizing this statuesque home to suit the needs of her family became Candice’s passion project. She had creative control over the layout, design and décor of their home, which is a traditional style with influences of Texas, South Louisiana and
the Caribbean.

“When planning this home, I wanted everything to be convenient and comfortable. I want people to come in and feel like they are at home,” Candice said.

The moment you pass the threshold of the front door, you are faced with a large set of windows that frame a breathtaking view of Black Bayou in the distance. The home has an open-floor plan with 12-foot ceilings downstairs and 10-foot ceilings upstairs. The entryway has a mosaic of marble cut in the shape of diamonds.

Candice wanted a cohesive color pallet and only used three colors for paint: Dove White, Bear Creek Grey and Chelsea Grey. When decorating, Candice used local art throughout the home, and the color gold is used to embellish light fixtures, doorknobs, plumbing and cabinet hardware.

“Believe it or not one of the most difficult things was matching the shade of gold I picked for my light fixtures but once I started I knew I couldn’t go back. But I really do love the way it turned out,” she said.

The master bedroom, master bathroom and nursery are on the first level. Guests have to walk through an open gallery room that has a 300-gallon fish tank with art and a large window facing the porte-cochere. The master bedroom has stunning west-side views of the lake, and the ceilings are vaulted with diamond shapes inset in wooden beams.

The master bathroom has a large soaker tub across from a large fireplace. Behind the tub is a shower room with a 12-foot high waterfall showerhead. It also has two other showerheads and a built in bench. Though there are his-and-her vanity sink areas, one of the most impressive features of the master bedroom is the master vanity room. Candice said it took the longest time to plan because every accessory and piece of clothing had to be accounted for. There are custom-built cabinets for jewelry and drawers dedicated to hair and make-up tools along with a beautiful vanity area.

Much of the second floor is dedicated to their daughters — the crown jewel being the children’s game room. The game room’s beautiful wood-beamed vaulted ceilings reach an impressive 18-feet. In the center of the room is a fireplace with televisions on both sides. The Nix children, Mary Michael, 11, and Maggie, 7, have game stations such as air-hockey and shuffleboard to play with friends. There also is a fully loaded kitchen with an ice machine and a microwave drawer. One of the best features of the game room is its access to the pool area downstairs through a private balcony. Off to the left of the game room is a fully loaded home gym with diamond-shaped embossed carpet.

The children’s rooms were designed around a bright color pallet and incorporated themes that suited each daughter’s personality. The oldest daughter’s room is bright with a color pallet of turquoise, magenta and orange.

Though the children utilize most of the upstairs, one room in particular was made especially for Candice. When designing the home, Nix created a weather-controlled room specifically for her Christmas and holiday decorations. She looks forward to the family’s first Christmas in their new custom home.