The main image is courtesy of Hattas Studios and B. David Levine.

If you’re looking for an unforgettable sensorial home design experience, you’ll definitely want to take a tour of the 59th Annual Pasadena Showcase House of Design in Pasadena, California, April 21st – May 19th.

Built in 1902, the Potter Daniels Manor serves as this year’s blank canvas, and has been transformed, room by room, acre by acre, by over 30 extremely talented and seasoned interior and exterior design professionals, with the help of many more partners, assistants, sponsors, and volunteers.

This newly decorated home offers a myriad of design concepts from intimate personal comfort to grand elegance. One of the many delightful observations that a visitors will experience is the discovery of countless discreet spaces — both indoor and outdoor. All of these amazing spaces, enriched with impeccable details, culminate into a shining example of what a contemporary, yet classic, home can be.

The transformation of the home offers design inspiration, new and old architectural techniques, experiences in texture, color, design, and one-of-a-kind pieces of home decor and art, many which are available for purchase.

For those able to tour the home, this article will enrich your in-person experience, as there is so much to see. For the rest, these ideas will give you inspiration by-proxy, as well as motivation to visit showcase houses in your local area!

Keep in mind that our article only covers a subset of this marvelous home, as it would be implausible to cover more within one piece.

Exceptional Design Inspiration from the 2024 Pasadena Showcase House (PSH 2024)

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Main Entry: Foyer of Enchantment

The main entry (AKA Foyer of Enchantment) is a re-imagination of how a modern entry can inspire, delight and welcome residents and guests alike. A key need for this space was to brighten the area by contrasting the heavy, dark wood of the original flooring, walls, and staircase of the 120-year-old English Tudor.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Main Entry Foyer of Enchantment by Rachel Scheff

Foyer of Enchantment by Rachel Scheff

Rachel Scheff of Rachel Scheff Design Studio explained to Purgula how she perceived the space and her perspective on balancing the space with light:

“The Foyer was a very challenging room, but had the potential of being the most impactful because of all of the historical heritage it has

In describing the challenges, Scheff recounts how she tackled 24-foot walls, 12 feet of which are covered in dark walnut woodwork. A custom wall mural with golden birds in flight, coupled with a John-Richard Twenty-Six-Light Chandelier in Glass Leaf design were instrumental in infusing a brighter, richer tone to the foyer, while respecting the historical elements of the original architecture.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Foyer of Enchantment by Rachel Scheff

Foyer of Enchantment by Rachel Scheff

Scheff designed a custom love seat in a velvety chartreuse fabric that is a whimsical take on the Chesterfield Sofa of the home’s era. The chair’s detail is exquisite with pine green piping throughout and sits perfectly in the right-side nook of the entry.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Rachel Scheff sitting on her custom Chesterfield Sofa in the main entry

Designer Rachel Scheff enjoying her custom Chartreuse Chesterfield Loveseat

The loveseat, in tandem with the beautiful center flower arrangement, greets visitors to the residence with an immediate feeling of being welcomed and enveloped in warmth.

Other Details of the Foyer Worth Exploring:

  • The light-colored carpeting, installed on the majestic stairway, expertly contrasts the details of the original, Tudor paneling and railing
  • The intimate sitting and reflection area, on the mid-landing area of the staircase, that provides intriguing details on a human-scale, to counter the large stained-glass window and custom peacock mural
  • The ornate frame of the front door lock which coalesces with the painted ceiling designs
  • The practicality of the space to be used as a waiting area or as a meeting spot for brief visits, without a need to bring guests to other parts of the home
Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Foyer Stairway contrast by Rachel Scheff

The light carpeting allows details of the majestic original wood to emerge.

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Dining Room

Another shining example of a discrete space is the Dining Room, which has been reimagined to be a “sanctuary, a safe room or a haven where food and drink are welcome”, beckons its designer B. David Levine, of his eponymous design house.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 B David Levine Dining Room Table

Close up view of the immaculately set dining table by B. David Levine

Levine believes that modern times have seen too many homeowners abandon their formal dining rooms in exchange for practical, impersonal digital lifestyles, much to his dismay. His redesign of the Potter Daniels Manor dining area is a return to celebrating intimate human-centric intrigue, exploration and connection — sans digital screens!

Levine’ s inspiration for the room was to imagine that the very wealthy Silver Queen, in her worldly travels, would return to Pasadena with her many treasures and tales of dalliances to the villas of her European friends.

Pasadena Showcase House of Design 2024 B. David Levine Seating Area in Dining Room

A comfortable seating area in the formal dining room by B. David Levine

Instead of decorating the home in more customary Pasadena Craftsman or Early American décor, the home’s wealthy inhabitants would likely have mirrored opulent European décor, such as:

  • Finely crafted padded-wallpaper
  • Murano glass chandeliers
  • Hand-painted ceiling murals
  • Silver parquet flooring
  • European treasures in every corner of the room

Levine added a “modernized” ancient treasure with an expansive 25,000-50,000 year-old fossilized tree table made of Kauri wood (Agathis Australis) from New Zealand that centers the room, atop a rectangular black base to accommodate ample leg space.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Kauri wood dining table by B. David Levine

Close up view of the Kauri wood dining table by B. David Levine

Bedecked with some of the finest crystal and silverware that Europe has to offer, the table’s incredible beauty might be overlook. Among the home’s many features, the Kauri Tree Table would be at the top of our list of “absolute must-see items”!

Given the richness and uniqueness of Levine’s numerous appointments and creations, we strongly recommend allocating sufficient time to explore this one-of-a-kind room. Even if you’re unable to envision this mélange style in your own home, we guarantee that you would jump at the chance to experience an exclusive soirée in this incredible space.

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Calming Spa Lounge

Self-care and mental well-being are important trends that are finally being valued and prioritized within interior design practices. Having the perfect hideaway to help relax and rejuvenate one’s tired mind, body and soul is becoming a modern necessity to combat never-ending long, stressful days.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Calming Spa Lounge sofa chair and ottoman

Custom sofa chair and ottoman in the Calming Spa Lounge by Margaret Lalikian

A Home Spa Lounge is just the solution for homeowners with busy, time-pressured lifestyles. We expect to see this type of self-nurturing home feature rise in popularity within home makeovers, remodels and in new home designs.

Thus, we were delighted to see how Margaret Lalikian of Margaret Lalik Design and Decor has demonstrated that a simple, small space can be an ideal retreat to create a tranquil, peaceful setting to rejuvenate and revive your spirit.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Calming Spa Lounge by Margaret Lalikian

Calming Spa Lounge by Margaret Lalikian

Located in the Gate House (the detached guest house), the Calming Spa Lounge is steps from the home’s primary bathroom and serves as a respite for an after-shower experience. With two custom-made spa club chairs with matching ottomans, upholstered in soft, crushed velvet, the room boasts a calming hand-painted mural by artist Arpy Dabbaghian.

At less than 100 square feet in size, the room appears larger, as Dabbaghian’s mural of a pastoral landscape with oak trees, gives the space depth, amplification and intrigue.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Calming Spa Lounge by Margaret Lalikian Floral Tea Table

Close up view of the floral tea table in the Calming Spa Lounge

Lalikian completes the spa experience with a well-hidden spa diffuser, soft, fluffy embroidered Parachute Aerocotton luxury towels and robes, shelving for skin products, and a luxurious, floral tea table with nibbles to quell post-nap peckishness.



Another space of the Pasadena Showcase House that effortlessly revives an “old space” into a lively “new space” is the outdoor veranda, located in the back of the home but strategically accessible from both the living and dining rooms.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Veranda by Steven Cordrey

The elegant, festive Veranda designed by Steven Cordrey

This elegant al fresco lounge designed by Steven Cordrey, of Cordrey Collection, reflects the designer’s expertise of creating enjoyable and interesting spaces for his hospitality clients.

Inspired by the style of actress Doris Day, the revitalized indoor-outdoor space was brightened with an off-white outdoor rug and elegant outdoor dining chairs that contrasted the traditional red brick of the Tudor architecture.

The space is further “colorized” with a large iconic green apple that connects with two large floral arrangements and a festive floral area rug underneath the outdoor dining table. The spectacular furniture pieces are from the Janus et Cie’s Amalfi Coast Outdoor Collection.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Verand by Steven Cordrey Seating area

Comfortable seating area in the Veranda with views

A highlight of the space is the two Janus et Cie’s Amalfi lounge chairs in pastel pink that are invitingly situated between the indoor and outdoor dining areas — perfectly appointed to enjoy refreshments and conversation amongst the serene outdoor views.


Culinary Garden & Conservatory

With specialization in food and flowers, the culinary garden’s designer, Chia-Ming Ro, of Coastal Homestead, provides intermixed spaces that have edible herbs and vegetables alongside flowers.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Conservatory by Chia-Ming Ro of Coastal Homestead

Outside view of the Conservatory by Chia-Ming Ro of Coastal Homestead

The outdoor space of the culinary garden is especially designed to provide year-round multisensory experience for the homeowner. From walking on the comfortably soft mulch walkways to touching and tasting the many garden-to-table herbs and vegetables, to seeing and smelling gorgeous flowers, the end result is a soothing, direct connection to nature.

That said, visitors will be immediately drawn to the stylish conservatory that impeccably showcases yet another discreet space wrapped in biophilic warmth that can be enjoyed during any season.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Inside view of the Conservatory by Chia-Ming Ro of Coastal Homestead

Inside view of the cozy Conservatory by Chia-Ming Ro of Coastal Homestead

When touring this wonderful space, keep in mind that Ro’s approach can be applied to small spaces, as well.


More Inspirational Details & Themes to Notice

When viewing showcase homes, we enjoy discovering details that make a particular room or design extra special. PSH 2024 has many notable details and themes that caught our eye, from the moment we stepped into the Foyer of Enchantment. Here are a few we think you will enjoy discovering, too!



Adding a mural to a room serves several purposes, many of which are used effectively in this year’s showcase house. Murals can transform a space and set the mood by providing depth and transcendence into another time or place for an otherwise blank wall or ceiling. Creating a memorable experience, especially one of luxury and elegance, can justify the time and effort necessary for a custom piece of wall art that becomes more than a conversation piece.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Mural in Nursery Room by Cynthia & Sons

A soft and playful mural sets the mood in the Magical Royal Nursery by Cynthia & Sons

Murals abound in the showcase house as soon as you walk through the front entrance, as the foyer displays an original piece by Hattas Studios. The wrap-around fresco, painted atop a French wash finish, was primarily used to lighten the room to allow the natural architecture to emerge. The verdant forestry motif contrasts well with added elements, such as golden birds in flight, and imparts a surreal beauty inspired by nature.

Pasadena Showcase House Wrapped Mural in Main entry area by Hattas Studios

Wrapped mural overlooking foyer area by Hattas Studios

Arpy Dabbaghian’s free-form mural in the Spa Lounge is a perfect example of mural placement to create a feeling of vastness, while providing depth and a focal point for visitors. The mural, a take on the property’s lush landscaping of older oak trees, is pastoral and calming, while serving as a “visual window” with natural light emanating from the actual windows on the opposite wall.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Calming Spa Lounge Close up view of mural by Arpy Dabbaghian

Close up view of mural by Arpy Dabbaghian’s mural in the Calming Spa Lounge

Perhaps the most talked about mural is found on the ceiling of the formal dining room and lends an air of opulence to an already elegant display. The celestial artwork, courtesy of Jeanine Hattas and her team, depicts several angels, which are an homage to the home’s lineage and history.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 B. David Levine and Hattas Studios Ceiling Mural in Dining Room

A majestic view of the celestial mural in the dining room by Hattas Studios
Image courtesy of Hattas Studios & B. David Levine

Murals can be found throughout this year’s Pasadena Showcase House of Design, including:

  • Foyer of Enchantment
  • Calming Spa Lounge
  • Dining Room
  • Magical Royal Nursery
  • Romantic Chambers
  • Gate House Primary Bedroom
  • Gate House Pony Tales


Lightening & Darkening

Another design technique worth noticing while touring the home is the process of either adding light, contrast or darkness to change the look and feel of a space from old to new.

We already cited one excellent example of this in the foyer, where the light French Wash wall treatments, light carpeting on the stairway, grand tree leaf chandelier, and soft gold treatments throughout, all transformed the space into a more visible, interesting and warm entryway.

Another example of bringing out the original beauty of a given space is the Library Lounge & Curiosity Room. With the room ensconced in dark wood paneling and floor-to-ceiling shelving, Jeanne K. Chung, of Cozy Stylish Chic, subtly lightened the surrounding walls by placing light textured panels within the back panels of the expansive bookshelves. In addition to making the room feel brighter, the off-white background in turn, made the personalized décor items more noticeable and easier to discover and explore.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Close up view of light bookcase backing in the Curiosity Room

Close up view of the light inserts placed in the bookcase backing in the Curiosity Room

Though we tend to be attracted to interior spaces with abundant natural light, a few spaces in the home demonstrate how darker colors can be used to create contrasting, yet comfortable atmospheres. One interesting example is the Powder Room Lounge, designed by Lara Hovanessian of Blue Brick Design, located just off of the main foyer area. By using dark colored wallpaper overlaid with bright floral contrasts, the walls transform the space into a reclusive “cocoonish” retreat, ideally suited for reading, meditating, or taking a quick cat nap.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Powder Room Lounge by Lara Havanessian

The Powder Room Lounge by Lara Havanessian


Birds & Peacocks

A serendipitous theme you’ll notice throughout the manor is the pervasive presence of birds and peacocks as décor items and art pieces. After speaking with several designers, we learned that although this unifying theme was not consciously decided beforehand, it was not surprising for them to see avian design elements propagate in the spaces of their peers.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Peacock painting in corners of Formal Living Room

A colorful peacock painting in the corner of the Formal Living Room

In short, we learned that birds and peacocks are often used as symbols of positive feelings and good fortune, as well as to reflect the lush surrounding grounds of a Pasadena home. We suspect that some designers may have also been inspired by the bird-like image in the front door’s stained glass window to maintain a connection with the early origins of the home.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Close up view of Peacock mural by Hattas Studios next to stairway landing

Close up view of Peacock mural by Hattas Studios by the main stairway landing

Here a few interesting examples of avian design elements that visitors will encounter:

  • Foyer of Enchantment: golden in-flight birds attached to the surrounding French Wash walls
  • Main Stairway Landing: Floor-to-ceiling mural of a purple peacock and tree
  • Veranda: White birdcages hanging along the perimeter of the space and a gold peacock candleholder on the dining table
  • Formal Living Room: Gold-framed peacock painting on a side-wall near the fireplace
  • Romantic Chambers: Restored one-of-a-kind wooden antique bird cage and taxidermy peacock
  • Magical Royal Nursery: Painted merry-go-round stork and a taxidermy goose named “Lucy”
  • Gate House Primary Suite: Bronze in-flight egrets attached to a white wall behind a large houseplant
  • Front Door Stained Glass Window: A quail-like figure above the coat of arms


Designing for the Silver Queen

Since the designers, who were awarded rooms, are unable to work directly with the current property owner, it was necessary for them to envision the needs and preferences of an imaginary client.

Given the rich history of Potter Daniels Manor, several designers were inspired by the legacy of a prominent past owner, the Silver Queen herself, Susanna Bransford Emery Holmes (AKA Susie) — a partner in the Utah Silver King Mine in Park City — indisputably the most famous of the manor’s lineage of owners. Susie is largely credited for being the visionary that transformed the original estate into the majestic Tudor masterpiece that it is today.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 View of the large kitchen galley designed by Hermogeno Designs

View of the long kitchen galley designed by Hermogeno Designs encompassing a fresh traditional aesthetic with all modern culinary amenities
Image courtesy of Hermogeno Designs and Fisher & Paykel

By envisioning historical and modern amenities and keeping Susie in mind, designers could strike a well-balanced blend of “the old” and “the new” that respect the beauty and legacy of the home’s architectural past, while seamlessly incorporating modern conveniences and techniques.

Pasadena Showcase House Kitchen Keeping Room designed by Hermogeno Designs

The Kitchen “Keeping Room” designed by Hermogeno Designs, where family & friends can keep the chef company!
Image courtesy of Hermogeno Designs and Fisher & Paykel

Two rooms that were especially designed with the legacy of the Silver Queen in mind were the Silver Queen Kitchen and Dining Room. Our sense is that both of these critical spaces would have certainly delighted Susie.

Levine’s dedication to Susie went so far as to include an homage to Susie in the Dining Room’s custom ceiling mural, depicted as one of several hovering angels.


Nursery Bathroom Flooring

We enjoyed the soft yet elegant touches of the Magical Royal Nursery, designed by Cynthia Silverman, of Cynthia & Sons. The combination of pastel colors with sophisticated touches — Murano glass chandelier, gilded mirrors — suggests that this room is for no ordinary child!

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Nursery bathroom flooring by Cynthia & Sons

Nursery bathroom flooring by Cynthia & Sons

The discerning theme flows into the nursery bathroom with eye-catching flooring, using Vita Bella Polished Porcelain tiles, which resembles a still glass pond.


Other Inspirational Details & Themes Worth Noticing


Floral Arrangements

The pervasive use of elegant floral arrangements, both fresh and dried, make experiencing the home feel extra special, inviting and memorable.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Floral arrangement in the Primary Bedroom by Amy Peltier

Floral arrangement in the sitting area of the Primary Bedroom by Amy Peltier


Light Fixtures that Dazzle

Virtually every room has a statement light fixture that elevates the cohesiveness and interest of a given space.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 close up view of light fixture in Pony Tales room by Shari Tipich

Close up view of light fixture in Pony Tales room by Shari Tipich

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Nursery Room Balloon Light Fixture by Cynthia & Sons

An air balloon light fixture in the Magical Royal Nursery by Cynthia & Sons


Specially Curated Décor, Furniture, Art Work and Materials

Creative designers love to showcase unusual items that give a space a uniquely intriguing personality.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 closeup view of fireplace mantel in primary bedroom by Amy Peltier

Close up view of the fireplace mantel in the Primary Bedroom by Amy Peltier

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Antique wooden bird cage in the Romantic Chambers by Carmine Sabatella

One-of-a-kind antique wooden bird cage curated by Carmine Sabatella for the Romantic Chambers


Window Treatments & Trim

Great designers incorporate impeccable details. Be sure to take note of the many wonderfully appointed window treatments found throughout the manor.

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Stairway landing window treatment details by Rachel Scheff

Close up view of foyer window treatment by Rachel Scheff

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 close up view of window treatment in Romantic Chambers by Carmine Sabatella

Close up view of a window treatment in the Romantic Chambers by Carmine Sabatella

Pasadena Showcase House 2024 Close up view of a window treatment in the Curiosity Room by Jeanne K. Chung of Cozy Stylish Chic

Close up view of a window treatment in the Curiosity Room by Jeanne K. Chung of Cozy Stylish Chic


Disconnecting from the “Digital Grid”

Interior designers are often hired for their unique boldness. We took note of an emerging “bold” design statement in two rooms — the Dining Room and Library Lounge & Curiosity Room — that of purposefully eliminating digital screens and connections for designs that instead foster uniquely human and authentic experiences.


Tips on Visiting the Pasadena Showcase Design House

Here are several tips to follow to make the most of your visit to the 2024 Pasadena Showcase Design House:

  • Review the visitor policies and accessibility limitations prior to purchasing a ticket
  • Ideally plan to make a day of your visit to allow ample time to: arrive by shuttle bus; visit the boutique shops; explore the outdoors spaces; enjoy food and drink; review the tour brochure beforehand; tour both houses and garden spaces; and leave by shuttle bus
  • Get directions to the shuttle parking lot to estimate your arrival commute time
  • Allow at least additional 30 minutes to take the Shuttle Bus from the satellite parking lot to the house site
  • Tickets must be purchased online for a specific date and tour start time
  • Try to purchase your ticket for a day-of-week and time-of-day that is less likely to be busy and that will grant you ample time for a relaxing visit
  • Tours are NOT HELD on Mondays
  • Available tour start times for Tuesdays-Fridays are 9:30AM to 5:30PM
  • The property is open from 9AM-6:45PM on Tuesdays-Fridays
  • The last shuttle departs from the property at 7:00PM on Tuesdays-Fridays
  • Available tour start times for Saturdays & Sundays are 9:30AM to 4:00PM
  • The property is open from 9AM-5:45PM on Saturdays & Sundays
  • The last shuttle departs from the property at 6:00PM on Saturdays & Sundays
  • Pair your Sunday Brunch ticket before or after your Sunday tour visit
  • Learn about the designers in advance of your visit
  • If there are specific designers you wish to meet, reach out through their websites or email addresses before purchasing your ticket to determine which days and times would be best for their availability
  • Wear comfortable clothing and shoes as the tour will entail extensive walking both indoor and outdoor
  • On the day of your tour, arrive at the manor at least one hour early so you can browse the boutique shops, enjoy food and drink, and most importantly review the program to get familiar with the property and adequately prioritize your time
  • When visiting the property and rooms, always ask before touching anything. For example, some designers may allow you sit on furniture pieces, while others may not.
  • If you are interested in purchasing anything you see, be sure to ask a member of the given space’s design team for availability and pricing
  • The Showcase House is open for tours rain or shine
  • Keep in mind that the event is produced by an all-volunteer organization to raise funds for music education, so please be patient and courteous when interacting with volunteer staff
  • For customer service, call 626-606-1600 or email:
  • Lastly, don’t hesitate to ask the designers and members of their team questions — especially if you may be interested in hiring their services. They will be happy to share their knowledge, inspiration, process, and more!


About the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts

The Pasadena Showcase House of Design is one of the oldest home and garden tours in the United States, serving as the primary fundraiser for the non-profit mission of the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts.

About the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts

Join Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts

This all-volunteer organization funds music programs and award grants to various non-profit arts and music programs throughout Southern California. The showcase event attracts more than 25,000 guests each year, celebrating its 59th rendition in 2024.

The Potter Daniels Manor — built in 1902 by architect Joseph J. Blick for Gertrude Potter Daniels — also served as the showcase house in 1975 and 1996.

Here are three ways you can support the mission of the Pasadena House for the Arts:

  1. Tour the 2024 Showcase House
  2. Become a Member
  3. Provide a Donation


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