Palm trees at the front of the house
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Green with bling in Venice

Palm trees at the front of the house
By Paul Young

Developer Tom Schey has built his personal residence in Venice, what he calls his dream house that mixes sustainable design with high-tech features meant to deliver a level of luxury. “People get a little uncomfortable when you mix green with bling,” Schey said. “But when you look at the bottom line, the numbers are there.” Head for the front door. …

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
View of the dinning area
The heart of the home is an open-plan living, dining and kitchen area that is defined by the slate floor, handsome (and responsibly harvested) wood paneling and a 23-foot ceiling. A two-story wall of glass floods the space with natural light during the day and opens up to a 25-meter lap pool outside. When the glass doors are open, as they usually are, the home has a serene, coastal feel, with fresh breezes blowing in from nearby Venice Beach.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Large tiles used on the floors
Billy suns himself on the living room floor.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
An armchair rests among bookshelves
“I’ve worked hard my entire life,” said Schey, who runs several businesses, including a green consulting firm. “And this is exactly the house I want to live in right now.”

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
The 25-meter lap pool
The focal point of the house is the pool. Purists may take issue with it, even though it uses variable speed pumps, solar heating and a cover to reduce evaporation. “What can I say, I’m an athletic guy,” Schey said. “So I built the greenest pool possible, with the least amount of impact that I could.” (Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
The 25-meter lap pool
The reverse view. Glass-lined bedrooms on the second floor extend toward the water; the media room in the basement has windows just below the pool’s surface.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Basement/wine cellar
Down in the basement, which doubles as a wine cellar. “People say this is my grotto,” Schey said, referring to Hugh Hefner’s notorious fantasy pool. “But it creates a great effect when the light comes through the water.”

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Upstairs
Upstairs, overlooking the dining area.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Dining room table
The 1,800-pound table is made from a single piece of Indonesian suar wood.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Schey house bedroom
The bedroom maintains the house’s free-flowing floor plan. (Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Schey house window niche
A decorative window niche in the bedroom.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Schey house solar panels and green roof
On the roof: solar panels and a green roof.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Schey house sedums and ornamental grasses
Sedums and ornamental grasses create a landscape high above the ground.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
bed in the rooftop patio
The rooftop bed.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Tom Schey in front of his Venice home
Schey makes no apologies for some of the house’s bells and whistles. “Of course we need greener homes,” he said. “But I work with a lot of architects, and they’re always doing a balancing act between that and creating something significant when it comes to design. But you can do both and still be effective.”

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
Tom Schey’s house in Venice
Part of what makes Schey’s story interesting was his ability his get green-minded companies to equip his house with appliances, fixtures and finishes. To read about this trend of sponsored green homes, read our story and check out the gallery of the Moroccan-themed retreat of Chris Paine, the filmmaker behind “Who Killed the Electric Car.”

To peek inside more noteworthy houses, lofts and backyards, check out www.latimes.com/homesofthetimes.

To read our design blog: www.latimes.com/home(Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times)
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