Recycling a Louisiana Studio

A large brick building in downtown Houma, La., makes a great home and offers the best views of Mardi Gras parades.

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Greg Fakier’s family has lived in the charming town of Houma, La., for three generations.

Fakier has long dreamt of settling down in town and he got his wish when he and his wife, Manon, purchased a century old photography studio. He knew they were doing the right thing when he found an old photograph of his father developed by the photo studio that used to occupy the second floor of his building.

Despite its state of complete disrepair, they were determined to convert the historic building into a chic, urban loft-like home. None of their friends could understand why they decided to take on such an arduous task. But now the Fakiers have one of the best views of Houma’s Mardi Gras parade and, as a bonus, no yard work.

The building has 10,000-square-feet of space. The Fakiers live on the second floor and use the first floor as professional and retail use. They stripped old wood from the bricks and used it to restore damaged areas in the house, such as the master bedroom. One of the upstairs rooms was badly damaged, so instead of rebuilding the room they took off the roof and created a spacious outdoor patio. To get the loft ambiance Manon was after, the living area, kitchen and dining areas are all in one vast space. The old photographer's office is now a game room filled with eclectic antiques and collectibles.

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