Ancient and New Tell a Story in San Francisco | Armonk NY Homes

A home should tell the story of its owner,” says interior designer Antonio Martins, the grateful second owner of this 1896 house in San Francisco’s historic Dogpatch neighborhood. Before he moved in, members of one family had lived in this house for nearly all of its 117 years, collectively adding to its character. Now Martins is adding his imprint through cherished finds from his travels, gifts from family and playful mixes of the very old and the very new.
Houzz at a Glance Who lives here: Interior designer Antonio Martins Location: San Francisco Size: 1,700 square feet Cost to remodel: About $200,000

“This neighborhood was full of Irish and Italian immigrants who worked the nearby shipyards and canning factory. The last resident, a man who lived alone, was born in this house,” says Martins, a Brazilian who lived in Hong Kong before settling in California.
By the time he found it, the house was in disrepair, and nothing had been renovated in the last 70 to 80 years, he says. But the home’s good bones were still there.
Martins moved forward with his professional hat on to stretch his budget as far as he could to rehabilitate this old Victorian and start a new chapter.
A 17th-century Italian statue from his mom welcomes guests in the long entryway. Scott Adkins of ProFab Metal Designs made the floating metal shelf, as well as other metal shelves throughout the house.
Martins collected the three metal designs hanging on the wall, created by Yutaka Toyota, years ago. “Toyota was big in Brazil in the 1970s and is making a comeback today as people are wanting to revisit that era,” Martins says. “I’m not interested in the trend; I simply love mixing different eras together.”
The living room is “my life’s story,” Martins says. The small white sofa in front of the bay window was a pickup in Hong Kong, where it furnished the compact apartment he lived in for 10 years. Flanking the sofa are two industrial benches used as petite end tables.
His grandmother’s traveling trunk now serves as a handsome coffee table around which two reproduction French chairs sit. The recamier is from France and was bought by Martins at an auction, as was the Chinese 18th-century side table. “It’s not about designing with what’s fashionable,” says Martins. “This room as well as the entire home is about what’s me — where I’ve been, who I am.”

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