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Home Design Showcase: Food for Thought

Home Design Showcase: Food for Thought

  • Dining rooms come in all shapes and sizes, but whether you’re seating a family of four or a party of 10, design yours in a style that suits your taste—and your taste buds!
Dining Room

Designer’s Take
Recipe for Success
Just about anyone can follow step-by-step instructions out of a cookbook, but seasoned chefs likely agree that adding “a pinch of this and a dash of that” is the real recipe for making a dish your own. The same can be said for designing a dining room—or any room for that matter; so long as the ingredients (in this case, the design elements) are tasteful, you really can’t go wrong. Osirys Mendez and Sabrina Vela of Mendez Vela, a Miami-based interior design firm, are the equivalent of gourmet chefs when it comes to whipping up glamorous interior spaces. In this dining room, for example, they combined two exquisite slabs of marble with distinctly different veining: One blankets the wall, while the other is fabricated into the elongated table. A consistent color palette, which includes a generous helping of mocha, ties the look together. Mendez Vela, 4141 NE Second Ave., Suite 203C, Miami; 305.759.7752;

Wine cellar design by Dragon Cellars
Wine cellar design by Dragon Cellars

Wine and Dine
If you’ve ever plucked a wine bottle off the shelf simply based on the allure of its label, you know that presentation can be everything. And presenting wine in an aesthetically pleasing way is precisely what Dragon Cellars does best. President and founder Al Fuentes and the rest of his team are in demand by residents of luxury properties throughout South Florida. “Our wine cellars, wine walls and wine rooms can be placed anywhere in the home, but the most popular location is the dining room,” says Fuentes. “The integration of our units both beautifies the space and elevates the experience.” Finishes can be matched to your furnishings, LED lighting facilitates a clear view of the bottle selections, and optional special features such as a back-lit counter even let you conduct a “mini wine tasting” in the comfort of your own home. Dragon Cellars, 1615 S. Congress Ave., Suite 103, Delray Beach; 561.900.3668;

Antonio Cabrera at the Mendez Vela showroom. Photo by Magnate Photography.

An Organic Experience
When it comes to your dining room centerpiece, it helps to think green. “My favorite centerpieces are those designed with a glamorous mix of succulents,” says Antonio Cabrera, widely recognized as one of the best in the business at incorporating organic elements into design (he was even enlisted to create holiday decorations at the White House a few years back). “Succulents provide a sense of luxury with their simple sophistication. They are durable and easy to maintain, and they come in many shapes, sizes and colors, which allows for infinite design possibilities.” Cabrera adds that his arrangements are a reinterpretation of the forests, rivers and places he grew up. “Oftentimes, I mix succulents with other organic elements such as river stones, natural moss and even metallic objects to give them a more creative look,” he says. “An arrangement with succulents is like a fairy tale that reminds me how perfect nature can be.” Antonio Cabrera Home Collection,

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