Four years ago Vinu and Manju Patel suffered a devastating loss. After lightening struck their Lansing Island home, fire destroyed nearly all their possessions. But it didn’t destroy their spirit. “God may have taken away all of our material possessions, but kept my wife and I alive,” says Vinu. “Now it was up to us to set a positive example.” After consulting with their children, the couple decided to rebuild where their former home once stood. “At the end of the day nothing was the same as Lansing Island, and even though we looked at other homes for sale here, this was our home and we couldn’t let it go.” The couple traveled all over the world during the twenty months it took to rebuild, buying items reflecting their 45 years of marriage to incorporate into their newly redesigned home. “We lost a lot but we gained a lot too,” says Manju. “We look at it as a bend in the road. This is a country with a lot of opportunity. What you choose to do with it is up to you, and what you do with your life is your gift back to the Gods.”
Vinu says the couple is “very proud of what we’ve done. For us it was definitely the right thing to do.”
The Patel’s completely redesigned to the house, added a second floor with balconies in the front and back. “Now the whole family can stay here when they visit.” The guesthouse was saved, although new stucco and a new roof were added to match the main house. Vinu and Manju had never built a home and he decided, “If I’m going to do this I’m going to do it the best I can. This home is a merging of east and west. We’ve lived so many places; we knew what we wanted from each one.”
The front hallway features Lotus chandeliers from India and Italian marble flooring. The footprint of the pool area is the original, but the area (including the pool) was completely redone with new landscaping and tile work. The master bath/bedroom area also features a morning kitchen. The couple traveled to Vietnam for the bedroom furniture, a Sari cabinet in Manju’s closet is from Hong Kong.