WELCOME HOME

BY BRIGITTE SURETTE | PHOTOGRAPHY BY HOLGER OBENAUS


A tapered-radius staircase leads up to custom mahogany double doors painted “Blue Teal“ by Benjamin Moore. The exterior is a gray PVC-based NuCedar Shingle. Custom teak shutters flank the lower level. The exterior decking and porches are natural-colored garapa hardwood.

Mary Ann Mackey and her husband, Jim, knew exactly what they wanted when they decided to build their dream home on Sullivan’s Island.

“We wanted it to be a homey place at the beach,” Mackey says. “Not a beach house per se, but one where our children would come for holidays, birthdays and special occasions. We wanted them to think of it as a place they could always come home to.”


Opposite: The grand foyer lets in light and blends white-on-white wainscoting and shiplap. The flooring throughout the home is a Hickory Barn Wood by Mirage Hardwood Flooring.

The couple, who have seven children ranging in age from 18 to 31, wanted expansive, welcoming communal spaces but also a home that suited their lifestyle when it was just the two of them.

Zac and Chip Naramore of Naramore Construction, a renowned Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms builder, made the Mackeys’ dream a reality. The family-owned construction company has provided clients on Charleston’s barrier islands with customized, quality construction for 20 years. Naramore is confident that its philosophy of offering personalized attention to a limited number of clients is the key to its success. The result is a better product and a more pleasant working experience, both for homeowners and project collaborators.


The elegant great room off the kitchen has clean lines and beachhued finishings. The cabinets, designed by Jill Frey and constructed by Eric Wengert of Mount Pleasant Woodworks, give ample storage. The dramatic wood-burning fireplace has a La Leaf silver gloss surround by Artistic Surfaces.

Naramore builds approximately four to six homes per year and handpicks the industry’s top architects, designers and craftspeople to bring its clients’ visions to reality. For the Mackey project, Sabrina Vogel of SLC Architect and Emily Cox of Onyx Design Collaborative rounded out the team. The three have worked together on numerous projects, and their collaborations have resulted in stunning homes with thoughtfully designed spaces. “We called them the ‘dream team,’” Mackey says.

“I’m on-site daily during builds,” Zac Naramore says. “We create more finely tuned and customized homes that way. We work precisely and with our client’s needs and desires in mind. We encourage walkthroughs during every phase of construction and are never opposed to making adjustments.”

A block from the beach, the L-shaped, 4,800-square-foot raised home has large windows and porches, front and back, for enjoying sea breezes, sunsets and outdoor activities. It includes an enormous garage and a large indoor shower room. The back opens onto a ground-level patio with seating, a flat-screen television and a louvered island-style bar. A pool with Jacuzzi and silver travertine deck is adjacent to a grass and stone courtyard space and a sizable yard for outdoor activities.


The kitchen’s large quartzite island lends itself to entertaining. The vaulted ceiling’s beams are constructed of reclaimed barn wood. Polished nickel pendant lights are Harrow by Feiss.

can accommodate large groups. A striking Tidewater chandelier from Currey & Company hangs from the ceiling. The tin-effect wall covering on the ceiling, by Phillip Jeffries, picks up the nickel accents in the kitchen and wet bar.

The Mackeys chose a reverse floor plan. Upstairs, the great room, kitchen, dining room, office, master bedroom and bath, and powder room create a resort-like haven. The first floor includes a TV room, second master and bath, two guest bedrooms with shared bath, a second powder room, a laundry room and a large bunkroom with bath.

The front of the home has a large, tapered staircase that leads to bright aqua double doors. The expansive first floor front porch and three separate porches on the second floor signal a big, happy hello. A large foyer has white walls of formal wainscoting and casual shiplap, intermingling to create a playful yet elegant ambiance. Prevalent throughout are unique design features—pecky cypress wood, reclaimed wood beams, metallic wallpaper on ceilings.


The master bath features Bianco porcelain tiles. Countertops are leathered Grigio Versilia marble.

The master bedroom’s theme is one of cool whites and sea mist gray-greens.

The gracious kitchen features striking quartzite countertops, while an elegant quartz wet bar and enormous round dining table nearby accommodate large get-togethers. A screened porch provides a relaxed respite, complete with a fireplace and flat-screen television.

Warm hickory floors run throughout the living areas and hallways. Creamy whites and pastels serve as a cool backdrop on the walls, while pops of vibrant color and whimsical details appear in unexpected and delightful ways. Turquoise- grouted and sea blue penny tile, blueberry-colored vanities, honeybee wallpaper, bold navy and white stripes are a nod to the Mackeys’ adventurous, fun spirit.

“No matter how creative and incredible the build process is, construction and design involve solving problems. It’s our job to make the process as stress-free as possible for our clients,” concludes Naramore.

Brigitte Surette is a full-time freelance writer living near Charleston. Find out more at brigittesurette.com.