Live Well

Barrington Homecoming: A Family Relocates to a Fred Almeida Design

These Ocean State newcomers wanted to customize a home from their favorite designers


Danielle and David Perolman were living outside Philadelphia with their two daughters when a new job opportunity set the family’s sights on the Ocean State. Danielle, a University of Rhode Island alum, hadn’t expected a return to her old college stomping grounds, but she was excited about the new chapter it welcomed. She and David looked forward to planting roots in Barrington and began house hunting. “Barrington is just such a nice suburb; it’s modern but with a nice, small town feel,” explains Danielle. The couple quickly learned, however, that many families covet living in the picturesque community, well known for good schools and quiet living. Houses on the market move quickly there, so the couple knew they had to act fast and make a serious offer if they wanted a place to call home soon.

Fortunately, the couple still had some friends in the area, and once David connected with a pal at his Barrington home, he couldn’t wait to tell Danielle what he had seen. “My husband went to this house… and he said it’s our dream house.” They learned the home was built by Fred Almeida, a well-established local builder and developer. On the recommendation of their friends, the Perolmans enlisted the help of realtor Nancy Weaver, a Rhode Island native raised in Bristol and a Barrington resident since 1980. Nancy learned about David and Danielle’s wants and needs and the ideal living situation they were looking for to raise little Ariel and Sydney, both under five.

“Typically the Almeida homes are finished completely and then offered for sale, but last year there were three opportunities for a build-from-scratch,” explains Nancy. David and Danielle chose a planned Colonial-style home near McCaffery Woods and the East Bay Bike Path. “The house has three bedrooms, two and a half baths, a fabulous kitchen and family room, vaulted master [bedroom], dreamy mudroom, full basement and two car garage. The ceilings are tall, there are lots of windows and the woodwork and built-ins are truly custom,” explains Nancy. “Luckily, its list price was right in their budget.” The location was also ideal: close to town, a quick walk to unique shops and restaurants, the gym, town library and East Bay Bike Path – it was everything the family was looking for.

“Fred Almeida knows what he’s doing when he builds a house,” says Danielle. “He’s built hundreds and the layout is absolutely perfect for a family with young kids.” The couple had been renting a home for a year and were able to work out an extended lease to accommodate the building schedule. “So the timing worked out perfect for us.” adds Danielle.

While waiting for a home to go from framing to final touches can be trying, Danielle soon realized the many advantages of being on the front lines of a new build. “I picked almost every detail,” she says proudly. From wall colors to moldings, appliances to wood floor materials, Danielle considered a selection of choices and in a number of cases, decided on well-chosen upgrades. Even better, she was able to see actual completed spaces with the details. Nancy, having worked with Fred for almost 25 years and having sold more than 250 of his homes, was able to show Danielle tangible examples in similar spaces. “She saw several other Almeida-built properties and was able to preview certain materials in the homes,” explains Nancy. “Her whole-house paint color was spotted in a bedroom in an Almeida-built [home] in the Meadows.”

The color is Sherwin Williams Rhinestone, a soft gray-blue hue that is clean, modern and bright. “Everyone that comes into the house asks the name of the color,” tells Danielle, who specifically sought out a gray shade for two reasons. First, it’s a neutral palette, which lets the color work in every space, and second, it’s practical, and Danielle says she wanted her design decisions to be timeless. “I don’t want to do it again!” she laughs, referring to the entire process. Rhinestone is a favorite paint of style bloggers, and interior designers – and Nancy.

“She has an amazing eye,” adds Danielle. “We worked very closely and she helped me make many choices.” One area the two especially focused on was the kitchen. For the countertops, the Perolmans both liked the look of Carrara marble but the material is known for its soft and porous qualities – not exactly child- or high-traffic friendly. Instead, they upgraded to Quartzite, known for its strength and long-lasting composition. “Wherever you spend the most the amount of time is where you should invest your money,” says Danielle, adopting the advice from Nancy. As the kitchen is the cornerstone of the home’s open floor plan, investing in the space has already paid dividends.

“The layout is absolutely perfect for a family with young kids. I wanted to be able to see the girls while I was in the kitchen and they were playing, and we love entertaining, so the flow is perfect.” says Danielle.

Just a few months after moving in, the couple continues to nest in their new home while adding more finishing touches. And they already have plans for the future. “We’ll eventually finish the basement and add a guest room and bathroom for when our parents and out of town guests come to visit,” tells Danielle. But for now, the Perolmans are happy to be home.