Retro-Inspired Lounge at Home Atop Unusual Houston Tower

Gin Braverman of gindesignsgroup transforms the Raven Tower in Houston -- once an unusual bachelor pad -- into a funky, versatile lounge space with a wink and a nod to its quirky original owner and 1970s roots.

Dim, Stylish Dining Area With Skyline View, Plush Green Chairs and Red Stone Flooring

Dim, Stylish Dining Area With Skyline View, Plush Green Chairs and Red Stone Flooring

Large windows lining the walls of this dining room create a gorgeous view and backdrop for the room. Plus green seat cushions pad chairs angled into small circular tables for an intimate environment. Red-brown stone flooring adds warmth to the design and compliments wood details on the wall.

Photo by: TK Images

TK Images

Driving up Interstate 45 in Houston, the unusual tower is hard to miss: a turquoise-colored box perched atop a concrete, six-story pedestal. 

But the unsual look of the exterior belies the hip personality of the lounge located inside what's known as the Raven Tower.

"It's really unique -- mostly because of the weirdness of the building," says Houston designer Gin Braverman. "It's like a bar on a stick."

Photo by: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

R.W. Walker built Raven Tower in the 1970s as his bachelor apartment. The home towered over his metal fabrication business, Metal Enterprises, located on a property adjacent to Little White Oak Bayou in the Near Northside area of Houston.

Today, the property is part of the White Oak Music Hall development, which includes performance spaces, an icehouse-style bar, patio and the redesigned lounge in the Raven Tower. 

Braverman, principal at gindesignsgroup, led the redesign of the lounge, which is fashioned to be a versatile space for both public and private gatherings -- one that enjoys an unrivaled view of downtown Houston from its windows and rooftop deck.

Shuffleboard and Bar Shelf Display in Entertainment Area With Stone Flooring, Black Ceiling and Large Window View

Shuffleboard and Bar Shelf Display in Entertainment Area With Stone Flooring, Black Ceiling and Large Window View

Open floor space allows for easy movement through the room and highlights the texture of the stone floor. A shuffleboard table runs along one wall with a shelf wet bar display on the opposite wall. Large windows with a gorgeous city view create an enchanting backdrop and natural decoration.

Photo by: TK Images

TK Images

"What the owners really wanted was the capability to be up there during the day with laptops and with a drink at night," she says. 

The inspiration for the design came from both the '70s and from Walker himself. Low-slung furniture in earth tones surround the perimeter of the lounge space, hearkening back to designs from 50 years ago.

For some funky flair, army canvas covers the comfortable chairs, and grill cloth -- typically used to cover instrument amplifiers -- is draped across the low ceiling. A piano and a 15-foot-long shuffleboard table adds a fun factor.

Before the renovation, a stash of old radios once belonging to Walker was found on site. Rather than trash them, Braverman turned them into a wall installation "as a nod to his weirdness," she says. 

Contemporary Bathroom With Neutral Landscape Wallpaper, White Sink and Orange Faucet

Contemporary Bathroom With Neutral Landscape Wallpaper, White Sink and Orange Faucet

Outdoor water scenes decorate this bathroom on the neutral wallpaper covering the walls below and above the counter. A black ceiling and floor create a dim and warm look to the small space. The white sink pops against the dimmer background and an orange faucet adds a unique color accent.

Photo by: TK Images

TK Images

Walker's touch also remains in the bathroom, where the plywood printed with hunting scenes he installed remains on the walls. 

The lounge is easily modified for events with movable furniture and coffee tables that elevate to bar height. The massive shuffleboard table doubles as a dining or food-service table.  

"It's like someone's cool game room but five stories up," Braverman says.

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Raven Tower

Built in the 1970s as a bachelor apartment, the Raven Tower in Houston is now a lounge lofted above an icehouse-style bar and patio area.

Photo By: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

Mod Style With a Twist

Designer Gin Braverman of gindesignsgroup drew inspiration for the lounge space from midcentury modern style and the original owner's quirky tastes.

Radio Installation

A stash of radios belonging to the original owner was found during construction, so Braverman turned them into an art installation.

Photo By: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

Low-Slung Furniture

Low-slung furniture is a nod to the space's 1970s origin. The furniture is easily moved to make the space more versatile for private parties.

Amped Up

Grill cloth -- typically used to cover instrument amplifiers -- is draped across the low ceiling.

Photo By: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

Day to Night

"What the owners really wanted was the capability to be up there during the day with laptops and with a drink at night," Braverman says. 

Fancy a Game?

Crews had to use a crane to lift the 15-foot shuffleboard table to the top of the tower because it wouldn't fit in the stairwell.

Multifunctional Furniture

The shuffleboard table can double as a dining or food-service table.  

Funky Flair

Army canvas upholstery adds a funky flair to the comfortable seating.

Sing Us a Song

A piano adds to the loungy vibe to the space.

Keeping it Real

The original owner's touch remains in the bathroom, where the printed plywood adorns the walls. 

Wild and Weird

The printed plywood in the restroom features hunting scenes.

Photo By: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

Unrivaled Views

Located adjacent to Little White Oak Bayou in the Near Northside neighborhood, the Raven Tower enjoys sweeping views of downtown Houston.

Photo By: Kennon Evett, Courtesy of White Oak Music Hall

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