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A Nantucket Nest

To the Feinsteins of Preston Hollow, being at home means being with family. And, for the family of five, that’s no easy feat. Especially when the group opens its doors to welcome their large and lively extended family – particularly for Friday night Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath.

Enter the abode and you’ll feel just like family. On my visit, the eldest Feinstein, Zander (who’s 6 years old), laughingly swung open the door with a cheerful “hello!” The friendly welcome is one that’s familiar to the abode.

In the foyer, you’ll first notice something that didn’t come naturally to the house prior to the Feinsteins: sunlight. After purchasing the property, the couple spent nine months appending their own personal touches to the place, adding windows and knocking down walls. “This house was so dark when we first saw it,” describes Dana Feinstein. “The biggest challenge of the construction was adding windows and bringing in natural light from the outdoors.”

The family’s nod to nature doesn’t stop there. The Connecticut-born mom explains that her biggest desire when decorating the dwelling upon move-in (a mere six months ago!) was to bring the beauty of her home state to Texas. The coastal feel is easily apparent in the home’s display of natural fibers, stones, portraits and muted color schemes.

The Feinsteins’ open floor plan accommodates the family – which also includes husband and father Ari, 3-year-old Lily and 8-month-old Coby – with ease. The playful brood spends the majority of their time in the home’s east side, where the kitchen, dining room and family living space can be found.

The attached, airy rooms harbor a nautical Nantucket theme, boasting seashells and a white, blue and gray color palette. Snugly placed between the living space and kitchen is the family’s dinner table that’s flanked by a homemade arts and crafts table – sized down for the kids. It’s here that the mom of three spends much of her time, coloring and laughing with the trio.

The kitchen, wide and welcoming to plenty of guests, emits a sleekly somber tone with its muted gray – and gorgeous – marble counters and backsplash. An open-top gas range and the long marble-topped island get plenty of use when the couple serves up a weekly meal for friends and family.

Adding to the cool factor is a pair of heavy, shutter-like sliding doors that seal off the kitchen area from the central and western portions of the residence. Ari, who works from home in an office at the front of the house, won’t hear a peep from the playing kids on the residence’s far side.

And the kids have plenty of space to roam. Head upstairs and you’ll find a trio of rooms that are decked out for the young ones. Lily, whose passion for pink is easy to see, rests her head on fluffy, monogrammed pillows – well deserved, for sure, after chasing after her older brother.

When they’re not playing in the upstairs game room, the three petites sit contently at their art table or flex their imagination in the manicured backyard (that also boasts a swimming pool). Whatever their activity, they’re likely joined by cousins and friends. “This entire house was designed around family gatherings,” says Feinstein. “We want everyone to relax and feel at home – there’s nothing that makes us feel more content than a full house!” And the family certainly has the patience, humor and wide-open spaces to cater to even the pickiest child’s every desire.