Tuesday, May 08, 2001

Showhouse gets guests thinking of renovation

The Scene

By Maxine Berkman
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        As if they always had lived in castles, 300 pretenders took occupancy of one in Clifton at the Cincinnati Ballet's “Designer Showhouse 2001” opening gala Friday . The rooms of the castle acted as blank canvasses for local interior designers to showcase their work.

        Some guests considered which buildings they would choose to renovate. A sampling:

        • When Donna Wymore, Indian Hill, visited her son at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va., she spoted an abandoned antebellum mansion she would like to rescue.

        • Barbara Kellar, Hyde Park, “would love to say, "Abracadabra,' and make the Piatt Garden House (her former residence) reappear.” The historic home on Grandin Road was torn down.

        • Event co-chairwoman Cynthia Muhlhauser, Indian Hill, would choose the Hearst Castle at San Simeon, Calif. “I would dig through the archives and display stuff the public has never seen.”

        • Event co-chairwoman Sherie Marek, Indian Hill, discovered an empty warehouse off I-71 near the William Howard Taft exit. She would love to create a loft on the top floor with a roof garden.

        • Showhouse co-chairwoman Danya Karram, Indian Hill, would choose the Palace of Versailles. “I'd try to bring it into the 21st century. It needs a modern kitchen and maybe a media center.”

        Designer Showhouse 2001 will run 10 a.m.-5 p.m daily (until 8 p.m. Thursdays) through May 27. Information: 947-8226.

        The showhouse is produced by BRAVO, the volunteer fund-raising committee of the Cincinnati Ballet.


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