Humboldt Park Hideout


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Sometimes, I stumble across something sooooo good, I feel like I just have to share it. It’s sort of a “the world will be a better place if I spread the amazing home juju” type of feeling.  The second I saw these pictures of Liz Klafeta’s Humboldt Park home, I had butterflies in my stomach. It’s THAT good.

Well let me clarify before we get into things. Technically this isn’t Liz’s home anymore, but it started out that way! Liz bought this home fresh out of college and over a span of 9 years completely renovated the entire space. When her job caused her to re-locate to New York, she was so torn about selling her Chicago home that she decided to rent it out as a furnished apartment on AirBnB instead. The response was literally overwhelming. She got such positive feedback from guests staying in her Humboldt Park home that she thought she may be on to something. She decided to purchase another property and renovate it with the intention of turning it into a second AirBnB rental property. Today, Liz is the founder and owner of the hospitality company Bangtel, which provides short and longterm rentals in both Chicago and New York with 24/7 concierge services and a whole lot of kick ass interior design.

Since her Humboldt Park home was her first project, it still holds a special place in her heart. I think one of the most interesting aspects of this home is that you can tell that this space was curated over a long period of time. Since she had just graduated college a lot of the projects were DIY and kind of hodge-podge but Liz’s incredible style shines through. She used a ton of recycled materials and did a lot of the work herself or with the help of friends, which she says made the place even more special. Liz knows that her style might not mesh with everyone, but I think it is the epitome of cool. One of Bangtels recent visitor’s said it best;

“From Shanghai to Berlin, Liz’s place is the hippest place you will ever stay. You will feel cooler here than you have in your entire life”

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First of all, I LOVE the subway tile wall. Sure, we are used to seeing subway tiles in kitchen back-splashes and maybe even an occasional bathroom wall. But a whole living room wall?! I love that it is clean and simple but adds an interesting element. Liz said she had a serious vision when she was renovating and unfortunately knew that it had to coincide with her serious budget. However, there were two elements in the house that she decided to splurge on and the concrete kitchen counters were the first. She really wanted a seamless countertop and loved the look of concrete. To save some money, she decided to purchase all of kitchen cabinets from IKEA. At the end of the day, the countertop had the same price tag as the entire set of kitchen cabinets but Liz says it was totally worth it.

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I don’t know what it is about this bathroom, but I am loving the vibe.The navy trim and red light fixture are such a fun and unexpected pop of color. I am obsessed with the combination of the rough wood vanity and chinoiserie wallpaper. And the Deer-head, how can we not talk about the Deer-head? It’s wearing a gold chain for goodness sake. Liz said that she purposely made design choices that were unexpected. She wanted guests to be surprised and delighted at every turn. Mission accomplished.

One of Liz’s proudest DIY’s hangs in the master bedroom. She said that when she was trying to get some inspiration for the space she kept going back to a couple of pictures she saw of tree houses with beds suspended by rope. Now this bed isn’t hanging by the ropes, they are purely decorative since the bed is actually on a platform. However it does create one awesome visual affect!

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The second huge splurge and a unexpected event made the master bathroom one of the most epic rooms in the entire house.While Liz was starting the bathroom renovation and her contractors were demo-ing the room, they removed the old linen closet to open up the space. Once the wall was opened, she could look directly down onto the stairs. The opening flooded the bathroom with natural light from the hallway and she decided that replacing the drywall with a sheet of glass would add a really cool visual element to the space.

Liz knew going into the bathroom renovation that she really wanted to have a free standing tub and a rain shower combo. The whole idea of a shower curtain hiding the beautiful tub just didn’t sit well with her and she wanted to be able to go sans-curtain. However this proved to be a little more difficult than she originally anticipated. In fact, it was quite the production.  You see, all the water that didn’t make it into the tub would need to have somewhere to go. The entire bathroom floor had to be sloped and a drain had to be installed in the flooring at the head of the tub to catch the extra water. It was an expensive decision to make, but once again, Liz has no regrets.

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Did you spot the pink stripe running down the hallway staircase?! SO FUN!

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Aside from one of the most unique interiors I have ever seen, I can pretty confidently say that this is one of the coolest rooftops in Chicago. I love the mix of wood and astroturf. I think this was such a smart decision on Liz’s part because without the turf it would have felt like a concrete jungle up there. The graffiti gives off a super hip vibe and adds a much needed pop of color. I dream about having an outdoor space like this during the summer!

And the rooftop isn’t the only outdoor area that Liz created! There is a porch off the main floor of the house that Liz boxed in with reclaimed wood she bought at the Rebuilding Exchange in Chicago. All of the wood cost her $90 and as you can tell, it was money well spent. She spiced it up with a bench and some fun little lights and created the most perfect outdoor alcove. WoodDeck

The coolest part about this whole place is that you can actually stay here! This property and so many others (Bangtel is growing every day) are all available for short and long term rental on their website and through AirBnB. To check out their website, click here. They also have a ton of pictures you can browse through from all of their different properties.

Have you ever done an AirBnB?! I have used it before and have actually had really good experiences. I’m so curious to see if anyone else has?! Either way, this place is making me want to book a stay-cation in Humboldt Park this summer. Rooftop party anyone?!

Photos: ApartmentTherapy & Bangtel

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