They say “ball is life,” but you’ve probably never seen that phrase integrated so deeply into a home—until now. Meet Brian and Elisa Williams, a family who made basketball a central part of their home life—literally. Now, one of the main purposes of Fargo’s Parade of Homes each spring and fall is to connect future homeowners to builders, architects and interior designers through home tours, and this was exactly how the Williams got connected with Benjamin Custom Homes for this incredibly unique home design. Initially, BCH had a completely different design for their home, but as their needs and wants evolved, they landed on this beautiful design. Let’s take a look.
Starting with a Vision
The design vision for the home was contemporary mixed with traditional elegance. Elisa wanted a consistent, neutral palette throughout the entire home and a touch of sparkle. The sport court itself was Brian’s baby; he played basketball in college and then played professionally in Europe in the 90s, now sharing that passion with their son. “I’m so thankful the kids will also have a great place to stay active during the colder months,” Elisa said.
Brian had the court measurements precisely detailed to keep true basketball regulation sizes for him and their son to have the best practicing environment. The court floor is professional level as well. It was important for the family to be able to see the court throughout the home. To accommodate this, there are viewing areas in the pantry, sunroom and full wall in the basement recreation room.
Another vision for Elisa was to achieve as many details in the home as possible while staying within budget. “I adore things like wall paneling, crown molding and sconces,” she said. “I just asked that [BCH] help me find areas where I could maybe save to get some of those extra details in other spots.”
Amenities & Features
Although impressive on its own, the professional-grade basketball court with maple hardwood is not the only noteworthy feature of this home. Other amenities include a pond lot in River’s Bend, a finished four-stall garage, court viewing areas throughout the home, a large kitchen, varied ceiling heights, trim detail work throughout the entire home, a large coffered ceiling, a built-in fireplace surround, custom built cabinets throughout the home, basement wet bar, sunroom with elevated viewing, hydronic heat, custom tilework, quartz countertops throughout the home, three washer and dryer units and a technology package throughout the home.
A Full Walkthrough
Though she worked together with Mel Anderson and BCH, Elisa took the lead on most of the overall design direction within the home. “Over the last 20 years we’ve lived in a lot of homes and in each, I would catalog what I wish I had done differently for it to be more functional for us as well as the things I really liked,” Elisa said. “So, I was super particular about what we wanted. I’m also one of those quirky people who like to map out floor plans on graph paper, so I came to them with all of my ideas on what we wanted and how I’d like the layout [to be]. They incorporated their expertise into my initial ideas to make us an amazing home!”
Every nook and cranny of this home was strategically planned with the Williams’ lifestyle in mind. As you observe each space, notice the beautiful molding, trim and detail work that gives this home a unique flare, while maintaining the Williams’ budget.
“Mel and Ben exceeded our expectations in their integrity and professionalism and in just being wonderful people,” the Williamses said. “During the building process, so many things came up and they were great at communicating and doing everything they could as quickly as possible to fix any challenges that came up. We still feel absolutely comfortable going to them with any questions we have and know that they will remain involved.”
Home & Property Specs
2,980 square feet
2,756 square feet
1,550 square feet
224 square feet
1,705 square feet
0.68 acres pond lot
Completed in approximately 8 months
Kitchen & Dining
There is a linear arrangement between the kitchen, dining area and living room. The space is approximately 40 feet by 22 feet long.
“All of the other homes we’ve been in have had the dining room off to the side of the kitchen and we found that we really didn’t end up using that space as much as we would like,” Elisa said. “We had seen this linear arrangement a few times and as we suspected, we use the dining room table so much more since it is right between the kitchen and living room!”
There is a beautiful 12-foot-long island in the kitchen that is perfect for everyone to hang out around. The colors throughout are very neutral with cream walls, trim and cabinets as well as some accent cabinets that are black. All countertops are white quartz with subtle gray/black marbling and the kitchen backsplash is a marble-style tile.
Living Area, Basement & Court
The main living area has beautiful coffered ceilings that take the 10-foot ceilings up to 12 feet and has paneled woodwork around the fireplace and windows. There are black benches with drawers beside the fireplace and stained wood floating shelves above those, as well as marble chevron tile around the fireplace. All flooring throughout this area is a rich brown, wide-plank flooring.
The basement has a wide open area that mirrors the upstairs. A wall of windows provides the perfect viewing of the basketball court, which is complete with a light maple hardwood flooring and complete with blue and gray accents and boundary lines. The basement provides a little more drama than the upstairs, with the TV wall being all black with backlit sconces as well as black cabinets and large pendant lights in the bar area.
“We just wanted to create a fun, beautiful, homey and functional space.”
Master Bed & Bath
The master bedroom flows into a master bath that has tons of gorgeous black cabinets, a stand-alone tub with a wood paneling surround and a spacious tiled shower. The neutral color palette is carried throughout both spaces for a seamless aesthetic.
Reflecting on the Finished Product
“Although we came to the house all the time during the building process, walking through the first time after it was totally cleaned out and ready to go just gave such a feeling of awe,” said the Williamses. It was a sigh of relief and joy as all the years of playing around with floor plans and designs for their dream home finally came to fruition. “We still feel that way now,” they said. “We’ve been in the home for approximately nine months and frequently one of us will just stop and say, ‘I love this house!’ It’s gorgeous, super comfortable, homey and so functional for us.”
To learn more about Benjamin Custom Homes, visit benjamin-homes.com or call 701.388.9172.
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