Project: Lumbard/Navari Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2014 screen porch addition on Colonial Revival “Outstanding Historic Resource” house in Takoma Park Historic District.)


When is it fair to say a Home Renovation Project was Transformational? This can be debated, but everyone would agree that the bar is very very high when we use the term Transformational to describe a home renovation. Our project required the addition of a Screened in Porch to the back of the house. The house is in Takoma Park Maryland which is very hilly. When you visit our home, you walk in on the ground level and by the time you have walked 40 feet to the back of the house, you are 15‐20 feet off the ground since the property slopes rather steeply. So when we asked Rick Vitullo to design a screened in porch, we used terms like Tree House and Sky Pad, because the porch would be 20ft off the ground, surrounded by Trees, with many birds flying by.

Growing up in Vermont, interacting with nature was a important part of our lives. This porch, surrounded by trees on three sides puts us closer to nature’s splendor. We hear many songbirds, and even owls at night. We see bats swooping at dusk and fireflies dot the trees. And we have a space for breakfast, dinner and hanging out with friends that is truly special. For these reasons, we feel our project was Transformational and has literally increased the quality of the time we spend with our family and friends.

Vitullo Architecture Studio PC 3D Rendering
Vitullo Architecture Studio PC 3D Rendering

Why Vitullo Architecture Studios?

We selected Rick Vitullo for the project for two reasons. 1. He is a very well respected Architect in our area of Takoma Park. 2. He is known for working with homes on the Historic Register and is superb at blending a new renovation with the historic style of the existing home.

We found Rick very easy to work with and he would bring great ideas and would tailor them to our particular tastes. We also asked Rick to go beyond the typical drawing package and assist us with the specific material and finish selection and he obliged.

In summary we could not be happier with our new living spaces and were extremely satisfied with the value and professionalism Rick brought to the project. I would unconditionally recommend Vitullo Architecture Studios.

Project: Creamer Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2008 total renovation of historic bungalow: total 1st floor renovation of living/dining/kitchen, 2 bedrooms and bath; new 2nd floor master bedroom suite.)

“The original design of my house featured small, cramped rooms, with much wasted space. When we first met, I told Rick that I wanted to open up the living space, without adding rooms onto the house. I also told him that I wanted a blend of Asian, Scandinavian, and Southwest design without losing the Craftsman feel of my house. This was a tall order to say the least, and Rick pulled it off magnificently. The design is stunning, the detail is amazing, and the feel is perfect. If I had to do it over again, I would definitely choose Rick. He is not only a brilliant architect, but he is also easy to work with.”

Project: Flack/ Fothergill Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2010 2nd floor Master Suite and Office addition over 1st floor Family Room.)

“We highly recommend Rick Vitullo to others. He was very easy to work with and we are thrilled with our addition. He did a great job of finding creative uses of small spaces and designing exactly what we needed and wanted. We live in a historic district and he was very familiar with that review process as well as all of the other permits needed. He worked very well with our builder, who was someone he had not worked with before and he also gave him good suggestions. We couldn't be happier with our total experience with Rick from start to finish.”

Project: Groberg Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2012 front porch addition replacing small concrete stoop.)

"… we love living on (the porch)! You did a beautiful job. We couldn't be happier!"

Hanisco Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2011 renovation & expansion of kitchen and dining room.)

“Rick was very easy and pleasant to work with. He had many ideas of his own but was also happy to listen to and work with our own ideas. Being in a historic house in a historic district, we were very concerned about the process of historical permits and approvals. Rick handled all of that with ease and we didn't have to worry about a thing. He was always available to talk over changes and come up with new ideas as the construction was in process. As for our house, we have a small house and had to work on a tight budget. The small renovation that Rick designed has completely changed the look and flow of our house. As one friend (and an architect herself) commented, "This is how this house was always meant to be."

Saindon Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2005 total renovation of 1st floor of historic bungalow; addition of 2nd floor.)

“I'm happy to provide my thoughts and strong recommendations for Rick Vitullo. I found him very easy to work with, very responsive to questions and feedback, and entirely willing to re-think his designs after constructive feedback from us.

We did a whole-house renovation, which involved changing the use of nearly every room in the original floorplan, without changing the footprint of the house. His designs were innovative--transforming closets into hallways, and creating intelligent, useful, and logical pathways that truly transform a house into a home. He even managed to find a place to put a small but functional coat closet near the front door, which, if you live in a bungalow, you can recognize is a true design feat. He is wonderfully creative when given the opportunity. For example, we requested a special space for our son, who was 7 at the time of the renovation. Our parameters were: "something that a 7-year old would love, but in which a teenager couldn't do drugs." He came up with a fabulous "hidey-home" which has already gone through several use iterations and remains one of the highlights of the house.

My approach to design was extremely compatible with Rick's. He took the time to listen to my needs and desires prior to beginning, and was able to transform my musings into practical realities. I trust his knowledge and expertise, and was therefore willing to accept his suggestions easily and with no regrets.

The kitchen he designed for us surpised me in so many ways. He moved all of the appliances to places that I was not expecting, being totally unbound by their original locations. Instead, he created a space that is both beautiful and functional.

He was also receptive to my requests for design changes based on my own needs and peculiarities.

The one-storey house we purchased originally has been transformed magically into a two-storey home. When we purchased the bungalow, I knew that there was something truly special hidden in its old bones. Rick, who himself lives in a home that is exceptionally respectful to the bungalow concept, understood immediately my need for more space balanced by my need to stay true to the roots of the original architecture. I could not have picked a more suitable architect for my needs.

Not only is our home comfortable and spacious, it adapts to the needs of our family as our son grows. Thus, it continues to remain my favorite place to spend time. One of the reasons for that is the final service that Rick provided--expert color consultation. All my life I have lived in houses with white interiors, and I was determined (but terrified) to make my home colorful. When construction was nearly complete, Rick accompanied me to Benjamin Moore, and in the space of an hour, helped me pick all the fabulous paint colors that now embellish and complete my home.

And if that were not enough, as a Christmas present, he gave us one of the renderings that he produced during the historic approval process. It hangs in a place of honor in our entrance, a tribute to his art and his artistry.

Although I have no current plans for any more construction, I would gladly and happily choose Rick to guide me through this process a second time.

Project: Regan/Snapp Residence, Silver Spring, MD

(2011 kitchen expansion and renovation.)

“Rick was GREAT to work with. He listened attentively to what we wanted, was responsive to feedback, and was creative in figuring out how to do what we wanted. We’re delighted with our new kitchen!”

Soto Residence, Washington D.C.

(2006 renovation & expansion of kitchen; addition of breakfast and family room.)

“Rick was able to integrate our new kitchen and family room addition into the old charm of our original 1926 Tudor style home. He accomplished this on both the interior and the exterior. When people look at our addition from the outside, they cannot even tell the difference between the old and the new part of the house. We absolutely loved Rick’s idea of adding the lighted coffered ceiling in the family room. It is so eye-catching and gives such warmth to the room. Thanks Rick!”

Wessel/Patten Residence, Takoma Park, MD

(2012 family room addition at rear of historic bungalow.)

“Working with Rick was a breeze. He listened to our needs and worked to create a plan that gave us what we needed in a small space while adhering to historic preservation requirements. He listens well and is clearly respected by contractors, historic preservation staff and the Takoma Park arborist, so getting approvals was easy!”