Bigger isn’t always better. Sometimes a smaller space feels cozier and more intimate than a large open area. The owners of this home with the help of professional home systems integrators from Tampa Bay Electronic Systems (TBES) came up with a clever way to separate a dining room from a dance area. Rather than build a permanent wall, they installed a pair of Somfy wireless motorized shades that lower from the ceiling on command from a Control4 remote, touchpanel or smartphone app.
Separating Dining From Dancing
The two wireless motorized shades were installed above the newly constructed ceiling to house two 6-foot-wide-by-11-foot-high shading fabrics that would function as a room divider. The fabrics from Universal Window Coverings
attach to two ultra-quiet Sonesse® ULTRA 50 RTS motors from Somfy. “We worked with the builder while the ceiling was exposed to create a removable wooden panel with a thin nearly imperceptible slit through which the shade could move through freely,” explains TBES owner Jaret Nichols. From its casing above the ceiling the shade drops 11 feet to divide the dining room from a dance hall. “The owners are able to host an intimate dinner with the shade down then invite guests into dance room by raising the shade,” Nichols continues.
11 Shades for a New Media Room
As long as they were adding shades, the owners requested that some be applied to the windows of their newly constructed media room. The addition features several huge windows, so shading the home environment from the hot Florida sun was crucial to the comfort of the homeowners. TBES installed 11 hardwired Sonesse® 30 RS485 DC hardwired motors for the window shades in the new addition. “Without the addition of the shades on the second-floor, the media system would have been unusable due to sunlight,” Nichols says.
Shades Lift and Lower Hands-Free
TBES integrated the hardwired and wireless motors with the home’s existing Control4 system, which the owners were using for control of their AV equipment. “The owners were already familiar with Control4, and Somfy integrates easily with it, making this installation easy for us and a huge hit for the homeowners,” Nichols says. TBES added a Control4 keypad at the entrance of the new bonus room; the owners use an existing portable touchscreen to operate the room divider in the lower level. They can also use a handheld remote or mobile app.
Lisa Montgomery has been a member of the Electronic House editorial team for nearly 20 years; most of that time as the Editor. With a knack for explaining complex high-tech topics in terms that average consumers can understand, her style of writing resonates with people who are interested in addition electronic systems to their homes, but are unsure of the steps involved and the solutions available. From basic lighting control systems to full-blown automation systems, Lisa understands the home electronics market well, and is able to point consumers in the right direction on their quest for a smarter, more convenient, efficient and enjoyable home.
Over the years, she has developed close relationships with key manufacturers and seasoned custom electronics professionals, giving her a keen sense of what home technologies are hot now and what’s on the horizon. She shares this wisdom regularly through feature stories, product roundups, case studies technology spotlights and comprehensive guides and books, which can be found on the Electronic House website, www.electronichouse.com.
Have suggestions or something you want to read about? Email Lisa at [email protected]