Wednesday, October 31, 2012

A Conversation with Carlo Mario Di Nunzio, AIA

Welcome to Lifestyle Architecture, where we'll share updates from our current projects, glimpses into the lives of our architects, raves about architecture methods and design trends, and more.  We feel that the best way to launch our blog is with a Q&A session from THE Lifestyle Architect himself, Carlo Mario Di Nunzio.  We hope you enjoy getting to know Carlo - and if you have questions of your own, please send them our way. Cheers!

Q:  When did you know that architecture would be your life's passion and trade?

A:  I started to think about and plan my career very young in about the age of 9! After I realized I would not be the next Elvis Presley, a slapstick comedian like Curly Howard, or a doctor, I started to focus on what I did best in school - drawing.  I vividly remember coming home from school one day and asking my mother "What can I do when I grow up that allows me to draw?" She went through the many options and finally she said, "You can be a architect!" I asked what that was and she explained...and like Lucy in a Charlie Brown Christmas said to Charlie Brown:  "That's It!"  Then began my fixation with becoming an architect like Frank Lloyd Wright.

Q:  What makes Di Nunzio Lifestyle Architecture different from other firms?

A:  It is sounds trivial and everyone says it, but we really do listen to our customers. Everything I do is in response to a life lesson from very early in my career. I was designing a house for a couple (a moonlighting job, of which I did many) and I remember sitting with the client and his father reviewing my design.  Admittedly, I was acting like one of those stubborn, young egocentric architects about a portion of the design when my client stopped the conversation, looked at me and sternly said, "Carlo, you need to listen. This is our house. Quit being stubborn and be open minded." From that point on, I understood what that truly meant.

Q:  What can a client expect when they select you for their architect?

A:  An open, informal and embracing approach. I want the client to be able to clearly express what they want, both verbally or through photo images so we are on the same page from square one.  I also want the client budget articulated from the onset, therefore allowing me to honestly tell them whether their wishes align with their budget. I tell the truth, good or bad. I learned long ago that there is no reason to falsely set expectations when they are not realistic for either party.

Q:  Modern or Traditional?  Or a bit of both?

A:  Like most architects I wanted to do nothing but modern, however I learned that the world just does not revolve that way.  At DiNunzio Lifestyle Architecture we design in all styles and we make every effort to embrace and respect the historical aspects of every style. We go the extra mile in focusing on proportion, efficiency and detail so the house is respecting of its style... whether it be Palm Beach, Santa Barbara, French Country, Italian Villa, Texas Hill Country or Modern.

Q:  When you aren't at the drawing board, what keeps you busy?

A:  It used to be cooking when I had more time. Before I started my own business, my second career calling was the Culinary Arts. After completing Architecture School, I almost enrolled at The Culinary Institute of America. I used to run for about 9 years, then gave that up for cycling, which I absolutely love and couple that yoga. Staying as healthy as possible is very important to me. I also love to chill out in front of the TV during football season and intensely follow my Green Bay Packers.... GO PACK GO!

Q: In a word, how would you describe your work?

A: Timeless


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