Historic Old Northeast Neighborhood Feature

As St. Petersburg continues to grow and gain more and more recognition, it is always nice to remember where it all began. There are many characteristics that make St. Petersburg what it is today, but one of our favorite aspects at Strobel Design Build of the Sunshine City is its unique historic neighborhoods. For over 30 years Strobel Design Build has been building, renovating, and restoring homes in the Tampa Bay area. In this blog we will take a look at the Historic Old Northeast.


The Old Northeast, formally known as North Shore, was the first established neighborhood in St. Petersburg. Located just north of downtown St. Petersburg, Old Northeast offers the perfect location for just about anyone’s needs. This neighborhood was originally covered with pine trees, sand flats, and several streams and ponds. The area slowly transformed from an agricultural and farmland area into a residential neighborhood. Some consider it as one of our city’s most desirable neighborhoods.


Most of the homes in the Old Northeast are American style-homes with window and wood wall paneling. When driving around, you can spot many seasonal decorations and families enjoying the porches and outdoor living spaces. There are brick streets and picket fences with lush foliage surrounding almost every house.


A 2001 article from the Tampa Bay Times perfectly described the Old Northeast: “If the heart of St. Petersburg is its downtown, the city’s soul probably resides in the North Shore area. It was there, in the section now called Old Northeast, that St. Petersburg blossomed from a village of farmers’ homesteads to a town born of boom-time prosperity. It thrives still, having the oldest and perhaps most influential neighborhood association in the city. Real estate values, even in some of the lower-income pockets, continue to rise. Most of St. Petersburg’s movers and shakers have lived at one time or another in a North Shore neighborhood…”


We have been privileged to restore homes within the Old Northeast and other historic neighborhoods within the community. Whether it is a Mediterranean style home or a Bungalow style home, the Strobel Design Build team has the knowledge and expertise to restore your historic home to its former glory, or renovate it with updated trends.


In 2015, we so proudly received a NARI Contractor of the Year Award (CotY) for Residential Historical Restoration on the Old Northeast home displayed below. The Strobel Design Build team extended the back of the home, renovated the kitchen, wet bar, and bathroom.


Extension on back of home. James Hardie siding and beadboard soffit to match the original exterior.


Full kitchen remodel.


Cherry wood-top island and beadboard paneling on ceiling.


Wellborn floor-to-ceiling cabinetry and Wolf gas range.


Kohler plumbing fixtures.


Cambria quartz countertops – Torquay.


Pella French doors.


Wet bar addition, featuring Wellborn cabinetry.

Bathroom1a Bathroom1b

Full bathroom remodel – Wellborn cabinetry, Kohler plumbing fixtures, and Cambria countertop.

At Strobel Design Build, we have come to appreciate both the charm and challenges that these historic homes bring. We understand the styles, materials and are well-prepared for hurdles that may present themselves during a historic home renovation. Don’t destroy your historic home with poor planning or trying to do it yourself – Leave it to the professionals at Strobel Design Build!

To see more historic restorations by Strobel Design Build, view our website gallery.

KBIS 2016

Just last week, the Strobel Design Build team was fortunate enough to travel from our design center home in St. Petersburg, Florida to Las Vegas, Nevada for the 2016 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS). KBIS is the world’s largest international trade event that is solely focused on all things kitchen and bath…A dreamland for us home designers and builders!



This 3-day long industry show hosted over 500 brands in the kitchen and bath industry. These brands got to showcase the latest industry designs, products and technologies. The leading brands also got to show the latest technology and sustainability in kitchen and bath, as well as technologies that positively impact living spaces around the world.

Along with the amazing and latest designs of kitchen and bath, “Voices from the Industry,” offered over 90 hour-long informational sessions. Sessions informed us on the following: Design & Inspiration, Focus on the Customer, Business Management, and Sales & Marketing. These presentations allowed us to hear about the most current topics and trends. Witnessing and participating in discussions with other professionals from around the globe truly allows us to stay ahead of the curve on universal design trends and share all of the information with our clients…whom we feel are an extended part of our own Strobel family!

Each year, KBIS holds a competition that showcases the best of the kitchen and bath industry. Out of hundreds of entries, they narrow it down to one winner for each of the categories: Best in Show, Best of Bath Gold, Best in Bath Silver, Best of Kitchen Gold, and Best of Kitchen Silver. We share some of the winners below!

Best in Bath Gold – Vibrator Faucet


“The Vibrato is part of the first collection of commercially-available residential faucets created with 3D printing. Distinguished by an eye-catching mesh of delicate latticework, it is printed using a high strength, lead-free metal alloy enabling fine structures of concealed waterways that converge at the top, before the aerator.”

Best of Kitchen Gold – Kaza Concrete


“The all-new Kaza Concrete collection strikes an impeccable balance of artistry and technology, incorporating artful concrete design with a sensitive balance of style and innovation”.

Best of Kitchen Silver – UPR 503 Undercounter Pull-Out Refrigerator


“The new UPR 503 undercounter pull-out refrigerator ensures that fresh food is always within reach. Combining high-energy efficiency with optimal storage space, the UPR 503 can be adjusted in height to match that of the countertop for perfect alignment with your kitchen design.”
KBIS gave us access to unlimited networking! We were so fortunate that we were able to to engage with peers and really immerse ourselves even more in the industry of kitchen and bath. Through the special events and constant learning opportunities, we came back to St. Petersburg eager to put new trends and products to use.

Next year, KBIS has announced that the location to be at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Luckily for us, that is just a short car ride away!

Thank you, KBIS, for another amazing show!

Top 8 Home Design Trends of 2016

Trends come and go. While there are many trends that we, at Strobel Design Build, are incredibly pleased to have gone out of style (read: carpeted bathrooms), there are certainly some trends that are longer lasting. The design experts at Strobel Design Build have picked out the trends they have incorporated into projects in 2015 (below) and foresee continuing for many years. Continue reading for the Strobel team’s Top 8 Home Design Trends of 2016!

1. White-on-White Spaces

whiteHistoric Old Northeast bathroom addition

In 2016, prominently white kitchens and bathrooms will continue to gain popularity. White cabinets paired with white countertops and backsplashes create a seamless look. The white kitchen generates a clean, bright, and even larger space…perfect for all the group gatherings in the room that has become the heart of the home.

2. Indoor/Outdoor Living

indoor:outdoorRemodel in Bayway Isles, St. Petersburg, FL

Located in ever-sunny St. Petersburg, Florida, the design experts at Strobel Design Build are well versed in indoor/outdoor living spaces! The indoor/outdoor living space trend allows for a smooth flow from the indoor living space to the outdoor. Imagine sliding glass doors, or double-French doors, that open up onto a covered sitting area with a fireplace and television.

3. Hardwood Flooring Throughout

hardwoodHistoric Old Northeast home with gleaming hardwood throughout

While hardwood flooring alone is not a new trend, hardwood flooring throughout an extensive area is increasing in popularity. Hardwood flooring is now being installed more frequently in the kitchen and then expanding into the dining and living rooms. Also, the color choice of the flooring is evolving from lighter to darker, and sometimes gray-toned stains.

4. Light Cabinetry Colors

cabinetryOld Clearwater, FL home built in 1925 – Bathrooms were kept true to their original design motif

As noted above in the white-on-white kitchen trend, 2016 will see an increase in the preference of light-colored cabinetry. Despite if it is the kitchen or bathroom, a lighter cabinet color, such as an off-white or gray, can create a brighter and more open space. Another cabinetry trend is floor-to-ceiling cabinets in kitchens—easily allowing you a place to hide utensils and gadgets.

5. Custom Built-Ins

builtinCustom addition in North St. Petersburg, FL

Strobel Design Build has seen its fair amount of original, 1920s built-in storage features in historic home remodeling projects in St. Petersburg and Tampa, Florida. This trend is making its way full-circle as 2016 will see more homes incorporating custom built-in storage spaces, especially in laundry rooms and home offices.

6. Polished Chrome Fixtures

polishedTransitional bathroom in Northeast St. Petersburg, FL – ROHL polished chrome fixtures

Once overlooked, the finish on plumbing fixtures is an important design element in kitchens and bathrooms. A home design trend that is continuing into 2016 will be polished chrome plumbing fixtures. This finish can match both contemporary and classic design elements in a room.

7. Reclaimed Wood

Reclaimed wood doorsCustom-made reclaimed wood barn/closet doors in Pass-a-Grille Beach, FL

The reclaimed wood trend can be implemented in a home in a variety of ways. First, instead of replacing old hardwood floors because you may not like the finish, they could be refinished and then re-stained. Second, reclaimed lumber could be used to create barn doors, a dining room table, or statement wall. Leave it to the experts to determine if reclaimed wood is safe to use in your home.

8. Lively Tiles

backsplashKitchen remodel in Bayway Isles, St. Petersburg, FL – Glass and Slate Series backsplash

Enthusiastic tiles will begin to spread throughout the home in 2016. Not only will we see these bright and intricate tiles in kitchen and bathroom backsplashes, we will see them as flooring and for fireplace mantles.

Did we miss your favorite home design trend? Let us know! And stay tuned for next week’s blog when the Strobel Design Build experts share about their trip to the 2016 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in Las Vegas!

A National Award Winning Kitchen

We’re very excited to share the news! Strobel Design Build has won the NARI Contractor of the Year 2013 national award for a kitchen remodel between $40,000 and $80,000. We thought you would want to see what a national award winning kitchen looks like!



Strobel Design Build wins new 1st place CotY awards

We are proud to announce that Strobel Design Build has just won several 1st place 2013 Contractor of the Year Awards! We won within our southeast region and have moved on to compete nationally, and we also won two 1st place awards in the local NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) chapter. Here are the winning entries:

Strobel Design Build has won over 60 awards, including NARI national, regional, and national, along with Chrysalis and other industry competitions. We have been remodeling Tampa Bay homes for over 28 years.

Save yourself from the storms

Hurricane Debby Damage

Hurricane Debby tore off a client’s screen porch in Pass-A-Grille

Floridians spend half the year under the threat of hurricane season, with the national storm average for the current active era (1995-2011) including 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes. That is a lot of storms! Not to mention the damage that can still be done with more general severe weather. That is why hurricane mitigation is so important. A FEMA study concluded that $4 is saved in response and recovery for every $1 spent on mitigation. And the upfront cost of protecting your home from wind damage is offset by discounts on your insurance premium, up to 88% on the hurricane-wind portion of your policy.

If you have an older home and are thinking about updating your roof, this is the best time to discuss wind mitigation. Many of the best ways to protect your home are easily done while the roofing work is in progress. Ask your roofer about creating a secondary water barrier, strengthening the roof deck attachment, or upgrading to stronger shingles. And while they’re working on that, we can help in the following ways:


Anchoring your walls to your roof and foundation establishes a continuous load path, unifying your structure from top to bottom against high winds and decreasing the chances that your roof will lift up during a hurricane. There are many types of connectors that can be used, but keep in mind that they are not all created equal and some will create a more stable connection than others. We can help you choose the right ones for the job.


Example of one type of connecting bracket


Gable end bracing is important to help resist high winds. Roof slopes divert wind up and away from your house, but the gable end portion is very susceptible to direct wind pressure. We can reinforce that area with cross-bracing and help protect your walls from collapsing.

Gable End Bracing

Cross bracing to reinforce your gable end


Doors and windows can be protected by many varieties of shutters or replaced with impact-resistant doors and windows. See our next blog entry for more information on opening protection.

If you are interested in seeing what types of discounts you can get on your insurance policy for various mitigation efforts, the state of Florida has a Wind Insurance Savings Calculator.

We can tell you that for our client’s typical 2500sf one-story home, the average cost of strengthening your roof connection and gable end bracing is around $2,500. With this typical home’s insurance premiums being around $4,000 per year, the potential savings are $500-800 on the hurricane-wind portion, and your investment’s pay back period is only about 3 years!

Call us today to get started on protecting your home. We’ll help you get the most insurance savings for your mitigation efforts and help you decide which choices are right for you.

Who knew “Aging in Place” could be this alluring?

Many of our remodeling projects today contain some  “Aging in Place” design features.  They can be small details like lever handles on doors in place of knobs or larger projects  like the “roll-in” shower pictured below. Your favorite design style need not be compromised for the sake of safety and aging in place practices. The historic Clearwater home’s bathroom pictured below maintained it’s original  character while accommodating physically challenged family members.


design features to note in this award winning bath…..

Small format tile on floor – provides more grip for the feet, and less slipping.
Walk/Roll-in shower – accommodates wheelchairs and gives a clean, and seamless visual line.

Built -in Seats – helpful to rest and sit while showering or shaving.

Pedestal Sink –  helpful for tight quarters and  wheelchair friendlier than a floor cabinet

Handheld shower head – this luxury is often overlooked. Adjustable and  helpful for short & tall individuals to reach. Some can be 3’ to 7’ high, depending on hose length and style.
Lighting – additional lighting (task and ambient) in small spaces such as the shower, or small corridors helps eliminate falls and potential injury.
Faucet Fixtures – lever handles provide easier grab-action instead of knobs that may be hard to reach from a wheelchair position, or if arthritis is a challenge.
Niches –  wall niches for organized “out of the way” safe storage.


Check out this video for easy home modifications for those who like to do-it-yourself!

City of St. Petersburg to receive “The Lens” as new pier design.

This design called “The Lens”, by Architect Michael Maltzan, will be the new face of St. Petersburg, Florida. The design is to remain within a $45 million dollar budget for phase I of the new build. What are your thoughts on the future landmark of St. Pete?

Click here to read the entire presentation from MM Architecture: http://www.stpete.org/pierdesign/docs/Michael_Maltzan_Architecture.pdf