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Inside The Towers

Nancy Satterberg Captures Comfortable Elegance in Urban Waterfront Living

By Mary Swift-Swan

The Towers premium home collection offers luxury waterfront living and resort ambience in one of San Francisco’s more sought-after locations. There are approximately 45 new homes currently available, including 15 on the top level with stunning views. The Towers management has completely transformed the Embarcadero One South apartments into modern luxury homes. This massive remodel included redesigning all the amenities, front steps, parking services, and more to create a resort-like feeling for its inhabitants. In our May issue, we reported the unique active community developing among the new residents of The Towers. In this issue, we are focusing on the elegant interior designs introduced by Nancy Satterberg from Seattle. Nancy’s firm was given the challenge of creating model home interiors which would sparkle like the views of the City lights.

Before new management entered the scene, the interiors were simple and quickly built for rental. Sinks hanging from thin walls, minimum-grade carpets, standard paints, and adequate lighting were typical. Under Nancy’s direction, the multimillion dollar restoration included sound proofing, elegant finishes such as Malaysian Mahogany or natural maple hardwood floors, custom closets and window coverings, plush carpeting in bedroom areas, granite kitchen and bathroom countertops, and modern connections for fast-paced lifestyles and business requirements. Open kitchens feature stainless steel appliances and custom-made maple or cherry cabinetry. In addition, each home has a renewed focus on bay windows and centrally located terraces that allow residents to fully enjoy breathtaking City and waterfront views.

Urban Traditional Breakfast Nook

This cozy nook has a terrific City view. The afternoon light and beautiful evening sunsets make it a favorite spot for a late afternoon cup of tea. Athens bistro table from Renais


TABLE--Renaissance Furniture Manufacturing http://www.renaissancefurniture.com

(206) 768-8600

BARSTOOLS--Durante Development, available through Enid Ford Showroom, Galleria 130, San Francisco Design Center

This light-filled living room is spacious and warm, bathed in soft golden tones both day and night. It is a welcoming environment to come home to. The sofa by Thayer Coggin combines two textural gold fabrics with a pair of large, dark brown leather bolsters at each end. The bronze lamps with light amber art glass shades were fabricated by Howard Lamps of Edmonds, WA. The bronze Milano cocktail table is manufactured by Renaissance Furniture. The Tibetan-style area rug in muted gold and gray-greens is made of wool and silk yarn and was woven in Nepal. Manufactured by Tufenkian, it is from MG Whitney & Co. of Seattle. The playful artwork above the sofa, 3Bicycle and Barrels2 and 3The Jumping Bottle2, is by Gerard DuBois and is available from Next Monet.


SOFA--Thayer Coggin,

http://www.thayercoggin.com/ available through Ralph Hays Showroom, Galleria 330, San Francisco Design Center

LAMP--Howard Lamps,


TABLE--Renaissance Furniture Manufacturing http://www.renaissancefurniture.com

AREA RUG--MG Whitney & Co. Seattle

(206) 762-0323

ART-Next Monet, http://www.nextmonet.com/

ORCHID--Decorative Plant Service, Inc.

(415) 826-8181


The Morning Bridge View

What a lovely view to wake up to or simply enjoy on a gorgeous day. With the Bay Bridge as a backdrop, you can enjoy the master bedroom view in an armless chair covered in Donghia fabric Bravo-Oliva, with lumbar pillow in Pindler & Pindler, Ginosa- Golden.


CHAIRS--Available through Satterberg Desonier Dumo Interior Design



Nancy Satterberg, ASID

While attending to the final touches and placing furnishings in the new upper-level models, Nancy spoke with Bay Crossings at the social gathering lounge in the Amenities building. (Satterberg Desonier Dumo Interior Design, sdd@satterbergdesign.com  (206) 232-1830)


Nancy Satterberg graduated from UCLA with a BA in classical flute performance. She and her family moved to Toronto for her husband’s career. Nancy performed and wrote music for dancers and CBC TV. After a time, they eventually settled in Seattle. Nancy was suddenly on her own and realized she needed to develop a new career to support herself and her children.

She had always been attracted to design. "I felt like a young duck being put into water for the first time. It really felt like the right choice." She received her AA in Interior design from Bellevue Community College, and in 1987 she began her company. Going back to school and beginning a new career as an interior designer was inspiring to her family. She gave her children strong values and a sense that they too could do what interested them and still achieve what was needed of them in life.

Nancy was greatly inpired by her youngest daughter, Kirsten, who at the age of 7 said to her Mom, "I’m going to be an architect!" After moving to Seattle, when they were on their own, Nancy asked her then 12-year-old daughter if she minded her new direction into the design field. "As long as you don’t go out there and make a name that is bad for me to follow." She answered. "I love to tease her about that," Nancy laughed in reflection.

After Kirsten got her degree in architecture, she worked for The Design Center for a few years. Kirsten was a keen student of how business works, including the nuances of dealing with suppliers, lines, designers, styles, and basic techniques of the trade. A few years later, Nancy’s rapidly growing business needed help at the same time a down turn in the economy made the competition for purely architectural positions very stiff. Kirsten and Nancy decided to team up and created their Satterberg Desonier Dumo Interior Design, Inc. partnership. Their business philosphy is clear in their Web statement: "Design is a process…fluid and organic, a confluence of people and ideas…unique and energizing."

The mother/daughter team has worked on many high-end projects, including several multifamily dwellings in the Seattle area, and has developed a reputation for excellence, being easy to work with, and expediency.

A few months after completing a project in Seattle for one of the decision makers for The Towers, they were asked to be the designers for the San Francisco project. Their main challenge was to create elegance and capture the light in these wonderful homes. Nancy said, "The light is very different here than in Seattle. The colors of Seattle are more greyed out than in the Bay Area. In certain situations, we use more saturated colors, perhaps inspired by the Mexican influence. Asian influence in design is common to both cities. San Francisco is a much more sophisticated city than Seattle. The tastes and styles are different and yet there are many similarities. I feel more comfortable here in San Francisco. Seattle is very outdoors oriented. The level of awareness is different with good design and designers, but it is less common. Everywhere I go here there is a lot of good design and wonderful architecture. The popular thing now in Seattle is to ‘bring the outdoors in’ and gardens are built as part of the interior. Gardening is huge in Seattle. The rains keep a lot growing. People really pride themselves on their gardening. Vancouver is strongly influenced by the Chinese and over all is more sophisticated, like San Francisco, though not as wealthy as Seattle or San Francisco."

She went on to say, "The colors used in Seattle tend to be those of the underside of a mushroom–taupe and soft. If you are in an area where the light is soft, saturated color is more jarring. In San Diego, where the sun is very bright, the stronger colors prevail. San Francisco is more in the middle, where you are able to utilize both saturation and soft tones effectively, depending on the space and light in a room."

Nancy Satterberg Desonier’s design talent has been a key to the success of June home sales, even in a down-turned economy. Another factor may be that these luxury condominium homes represent one of the last areas of newly constructed waterfront properties available in San Francisco. As leases end, construction and full renovation of new units is ongoing and will continue until all are complete. Often, the beautiful models that Nancy has so carefully created are the ones that sell, necessitating Nancy’s return to decorate new models each month.

The Towers at Embarcadero South Sales Center is located at 88 King Street (Second & Embarcadero) in San Francisco. Homes range from $725,000 to $1.6 million. The Sales Center is open every day except Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For sales information, call (415) 371-8800 or visit www.sftowers.com.

Satterberg Desonier Dumo Interior Design, sdd@satterbergdesign.com

(206) 232-1830