Dallas Builders Association Hosts Best in the Business for 2016 ARC Awards

ARC Logo 2

The Dallas Builders Association’s annual ARC awards sent me north to the Westin Galleria on Saturday night.  Amazingly, our recent rains didn’t hamper any glamorous (and dry) entrances and exits. It’s my second year attending this fab ‘do and I try not to take their “no jeans, khakis, shorts” admonition personally.

Dallas Builders Assoc Logo

Before we jump to the winners (suspense?) I’ll say that homeowners looking to either remodel or build from scratch should check out the DBA website for resources and education.  They hold regular seminars on a variety of building topics, such as the Sept. 7 course titled the “Basics of Building.” It sounds like a great test-the-waters course that at eight hours will either mesmerize or scare the bejesus out of you. There’s also the Oct. 12 course on “New Home Technology” that lasts three hours and includes lunch. There is a charge for courses and they’re aimed at professionals, but as a consumer, learning a little before you begin ain’t half bad.


Elite Remodeling; Best Kitchen Remodel $35,000 - $50,000

Elite Remodeling; Best Kitchen Remodel $35,000 – $50,000

In addition to the builders present, there were a selection of sponsors including the expected: Ferguson, Capital Distributing, Arizona Tile, Riddell Plumbing, and others.  But I have to call out two wonderfully named businesses serving our builders and remodelers — Texas Counter Fitters and Staz-On Roofing. They do exactly what you’d think unless you’re looking for a wooden nickel.

With 56 categories, there was something for nearly everyone here.  For a high-riser like me, that meant one balcony enclosure project at The Claridge, because this is all about houses, both new builds and remodels.

6315 Stefani - BEFORE

6315 Stefani – BEFORE

The home that won the night was located at 6315 Stefani which was built by Thomas Signature Homes.  Originally a 1950 ranch, the home had three bedrooms and three bathrooms covering 3,356 square feet in Preston Hollow.  Today, it’s a five-bedroom home with five full and two half bathrooms encompassing 6,975 square feet.  This home is a builder’s spec home only in that it’s the builder’s personal residence.

6315 Stafani's Award Winning Family Room and Kitchen (AFTER)

6315 Stefani’s Award-Winning Family Room and Kitchen (AFTER)

It was a finalist in Best Master Suite, Best Kitchen Over $2 million (whole project cost, not JUST kitchen), Best Curb Appeal over $1 million, Best Green Built Home Over $1 million, Best New Home Over $2 million, Best Architectural Design – Traditional Over $2 million, Best Overall Interior Design Over $1 million, and Best Living Room Over $1 million. It won five out of those seven entries, missing Best Curb Appeal and Best Green Built Home. Not a bad haul at all.

For me, it’s all about kitchens.  I like bathrooms too, but I spend more time in the kitchen.  There were nine “Best Kitchen” categories.

Lippitt Kitchen Remodel (Hatfield Builders & Remodelers)

Lippitt Kitchen Remodel (Hatfield Builders & Remodelers)

Classic Urban Homes' Westlawn project

Classic Urban Homes’ Westlawn project

  • Best Kitchen Under $1 million (part of a project whose value is under $1 million)
  • Best Kitchen $1 million – $1.5 million
Alford Builders' 6804 Amaretto kitchen

Alford Builders’ 6804 Amaretto kitchen

6315 Stafani kitchen by Thomas Signature Homes

6315 Stefani kitchen by Thomas Signature Homes

That wraps up the kitchen categories.  As you can see, a lot of white, but not all white.  Some used wood with light counters, some used wood as an accent island, and not everyone used Shaker-style cabinetry.  Expensive kitchens still use exquisite millwork that in years past may have been walnut but is now painted in lighter tones.

What you will also notice is that the more upmarket the kitchen, the more likely it is you’ll see inset cabinet doors and drawers. (FYI: Inset doors/drawers are where the moveable part of the door fits inside the cabinet frame, not on top of it. It’s more like furniture and it’s more costly … and it’s been making a BIG comeback recently.)

Stay tuned for bathrooms, builders, and best unbuilt design winners.


Remember:  High-rises, HOAs and renovation are my beat. But I also appreciate modern and historical architecture balanced against the YIMBY movement.  If you’re interested in hosting a Candysdirt.com Staff Meeting event, I’m your guy. In 2016, my writing was recognized with Bronze and Silver awards from the National Association of Real Estate Editors.  Have a story to tell or a marriage proposal to make?  Shoot me an email sharewithjon@candysdirt.com.


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