Life in the Tropics

A couple wanted their home to feel like a private paradise.


By Michelle Mastro

Photography by Karen Palmer Photography

Builder Consort Homes

Interior design Marcia Moore Design


   Locales like California and Florida harbor tropical climes nearly all year-round. But the Midwest of course has no such luck. Principal designer and creative director Marcia Moore of Marcia Moore Design was hired to transform a new St Louis build into a tropical paradise that reflects the vibes and feel of an island resort. 

    The homeowner wanted a resort-style interior because when traveling before Covid, they always enjoyed staying at resorts. “We loved how 5-star resorts made us feel,” says the homeowner. “We thought it would be great if we could feel the resort experience every day without having to leave our home.”

    They had just built the house and were coming from a small apartment with very little furniture. “This was basically our starting point,” says Moore. Everything was white or beige, and one of the first things Moore wanted to do was amp up the color. 

    She leaned tropical with vibrant hues and gentle allusions to the tropics. “They wanted more Caribbean or British West Indies as opposed to Polynesian or Hawaiian,” explains Moore. The couple also wanted to honor their African and Egyptian heritages with professional art by artists from those regions. “So, I found a wonderful Egyptian artist who created the pieces in the front entry, library and living room.”

    Although Moore had been asked to make homes feel like vacation getaways before, she’d never worked on anything quite like this. “Usually, a client might want a coastal theme—think seashells in glass jars and signs that read ‘This Way to the Beach.’” But Moore was up to the challenge of creating what the couple wanted, a resort with a high-end feel. 

    The couple works from home full-time, so they wanted every day to feel like a day in paradise. Moore helped transform the formal living room into the wife’s office. There, the soft sage green accent wall with a triptych painting was created specifically as a backdrop for Zoom meetings. “The wall to the left of the desk is a painted whiteboard for sketching out ideas and concepts,” Moore says. She added in a divan, the perfect spot to lounge between Zoom calls. “It was important to keep this room feminine and soothing to alleviate the stress of a high-pressure job.” Across from the office is the library. Using custom Ikea cabinets, Moore was able to transform the formal dining room into a unique and colorful reading space. 

    Another means of relaxation is a former walk-in closet. “Behind the door seen in the workout room is the meditation room,” Moore says. Perhaps the biggest change in this room was making it feel cozy. Moore added in vibrant green tile to one wall, so the space didn’t feel like a closet anymore. A fountain hangs on the wall with shelves made with live-edge wood. Here perch florals, crystals and succulents that boost a feeling of tranquility.

    “But to me the primary bedroom is the epitome of a resort,” Moore says. “The woven wallpaper looks like waves paired against misty sky.” Easy chairs sit nearby, and a giant pendant lamp hangs overhead, resembling a jellyfish or floppy beach umbrella. And then there’s the breakfast nook. “We added a tropical mural to one wall so now it feels like you are eating on a terrace overlooking the ocean.”

    “Your home is your safe haven,” says the homeowner. So why not make your home reflect how you want to feel? And so the home feels like the couple are living in the lap of resort-style luxury. 


Builder Consort Homes

Interior design Marcia Moore Design