Blueplate PR Named Agency of Record for Kaiser Associates, a Florida Real Estate Brokerage for Modern Homes and Commercial Property

Kaiser Associates Realtors, South Florida’s only real estate brokerage specializing exclusively in modern homes, has selected Blueplate PR in Raleigh, NC, as its public relations agency, citing owner Kim Weiss’s extensive knowledge of architecture – especially modern architecture – as a key factor.

Public relations Raleigh
Tobias Kaiser, owner/broker, Kaiser Associates Realtors

“Our clients have a refined, special taste in homes, and our buyers are located all over the Americas,” said Tobias Kaiser, founder/owner, and a licensed broker. “Being trained in, and having worked in, public communication, I know print advertising won’t reach them. Looking for someone to help us grow our business and who understands modern architecture, Kim is just uniquely qualified.”

A native of Germany, Kaiser and his wife, Lisa, live in Boca Raton. They also maintain a home outside Munich and another in Raleigh where they met Weiss.

“When I launched Blueplate PR in 2004, after nearly 20 years as a journalist covering architecture and historic preservation, I promised myself that I would only accept clients whose work fueled my passions,” she said. “When I’m excited about a client’s work, good things happen. Well, I’m very excited about the work that Tobias and his team do at Kaiser Associates. They don’t just move real estate. They’re actually ‘match-makers’ who help very special homes find very special homeowners and renters who truly love and appreciate the houses’ architectural integrity. I’m thrilled that they’re letting me be a part of all that love!”

Throughout South-East Florida, Tobias Kaiser has documented over 4700 modernist homes and evaluated and brokered many of them, including:

For the latter, Kaiser found the lot and the architect and served as the owner’s representative throughout construction, which took three years to complete.

Among the homes Kaiser currently represents exclusively or in cooperation with colleagues is an exemplary mid-century modern beach house designed by renowned American architect Paul Rudolph. That house and all of Kaiser’s listings can be viewed at

For more information on Kaiser Associates Realtors, visit

For more information on Blueplate PR, go to

About Kaiser Associates Realtors:

Through its experienced real estate agents, Kaiser Associates offers clients expertise, knowledge, and experience in four core specialties: (1) brokering, preserving, and promoting modern homes in South Florida, from mid-century to new construction; (2) owner representation and consulting for modernist ground-up construction, rehabs and renovations; (3) a full range of residential services including buying, selling, and renting; and (4) buyer representation for Net-leased/NNN investment properties in Florida and throughout the U.S.



Day and Night: Pod Architecture + Design To Display Work in NCSU Exhibition

Demonstrating the perception of space from day to night.

Carrboro modern architects
Exhibition board showing Connie & Ted’s restaurant by day (top) and night (bottom).

February 12, 2018 (Carrboro, NC) — How structure is perceived from day to night is the theme of the presentation that pod architecture + design (pod a+d) in Carrboro is contributing to the upcoming N.C. State University School of Architecture Alumni Exhibition. The exhibition will be on display in the Brooks Hall Gallery on the NCSU campus during the School’s accreditation review in mid-February.

Juxtaposing a photograph of each project taken in bright daylight with a photo captured against a darkened sky, pod a+d’s presentation includes an adaptive re-use project in Louisville, KY, an educational facility in Goshen, IN, an iconic restaurant in West Hollywood, CA, and a large-scale experiential graphics project in Qatar.

Pod a+d is a hybrid firm owned and operated by design principals Douglas V. Pierson, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C, and Youn Choi, an environmental graphics designer. The couple relocated their firm from Los Angeles to North Carolina in 2016.

Carrboro Modern Architects
Qatar experiential graphics project by day (top) and night( (bottom).

“Doug and I always consider the day and nightlife of a design because the perception of the space changes as the light changes – from day to night and from natural to electric lighting,” Choi explained. “We also consider when the use of the space will be the liveliest. Perhaps the users are more productive during the day when the sun is shining. Some rejuvenate in the evening as the sun goes down. This is an integrated, repeating process that we always consider.”

According to David Hill, head of the School of Architecture, NCSU College of Design, “This will be an important show of work that will be seen by visitors from the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), faculty, students, and other visitors. Perhaps this exhibition will allow the school to reconnect with a great number of alumni throughout the world.”

For more information on the upcoming exhibition, email

For more information on pod architecture + design, visit

About pod architecture + design:

pod a+d offers all architectural design services that connect building, environment, and identity because we believe in the integration of architecture and design disciplines throughout our projects.  Exteriors, interiors, engineering, furnishings and finishes, equipment, financial feasibility, scheduling, construction, and the environmental context – these are the contributing elements that inform our integrated approach to each architectural project’s design.  More information:


For The Third Consecutive Year, Chapel Hill Architect Arielle Condoret Schechter is Awarded “Best of Houzz” for Client Satisfaction

Best of Houzz Badge 2018Arielle Condoret Schechter, AIA, of Chapel Hill, NC, has been voted by as a winner of a Best of Houzz 2018 award, marking the third consecutive year she has received this award from the popular worldwide online community.

From among more than one million active home building, remodeling, and design industry professionals associated with Houzz, Schechter won in the Client Satisfaction category again because “your portfolio includes some of the most consistent reviews on Houzz in 2017,” the Houzz team informed her.

Expressing her gratitude for her clients taking the time to post so many positive reviews on, Schechter explained her thoughts on client services.

“While we’re working together, my clients and I form a type of family,” she said. “I care about them and their worries are my worries.  Also, having built my own house, I empathize strongly with their concerns. It’s the most expensive thing they’ll ever own and I am very respectful of that.”

Founded in 2009 in Palo Alto, CA, the Houzz platform features articles, photographs, product recommendations, and a user forum along with professional profiles. The Best of Houzz awards are presented annually in three categories: Design, Customer Service/Client Satisfaction, and Photography. A “Best of Houzz 2018” badge appears on a winner’s Houzz profile to help homeowners identify popular and top-rated professionals in every metro area. For more information, go to

To see Arielle Schechter’s Houzz profile, including her clients’ reviews, go to For more information on the architect, visit

About Arielle Condoret Schechter AiA:

Arielle Condoret Schechter, AIA, is a licensed, registered architect based in Chapel Hill, NC, who specializes in Modernist, energy-efficient buildings with a focus on passive houses, NET ZERO houses, and her new tiny house plans, the Micropolis Houses®. She is a lifelong environmentalist and began practicing green design long before it became mainstream. She is also a lifelong animal advocate who lives in Chapel Hill with her husband, Arnie, and an assortment of foster animals in the Modern, sustainable house she designed for them. For more information:



THE MODERN SHELTER: “MidZENtury paradise”


ACS reading nook_Keith Isaacs
Reading corner along the hallway. Photo by Keith Isaacs

By Sara Mingote

Hi there, welcome! Please, make yourself at home. This is the first post in the blog, and also a very special one.

This is the residence of Arielle Condoret Schechter, architect and designer, a space with great character but serene, filled with natural light and good decisions. With a mid-century modern inclination and a zen outdoor inspiration, she decided to make her home as comfortable as possible, e.g., adding wheels to chairs and tables, allowing the sunlight to find her path in between sofas and shelves and fill every possible inch.

Driven by sustainability, the architect installed solar panels on the roof -approaching almost net zero-, and also built a solar hot water heater and a large compost tiller. Condoret believes that making that kind of decisions, conserving energy, preserving natural resources and reducing costs, ‘That’s the kind of environment that just makes you feel good about life…”  READ MORE… 




LOUISVILLE BUSINESS FIRST: “First Look: Plenty of progress to be seen around Rabbit Hole Distillery”

A look at progress at Rabbit Hole Distillery - Louisville - Louisville Business First 2018-01-16 07-36-02
Rabbit Hole Distillery under construction. Photo by William Deshaver

By David A. Mann

Rabbit Hole Distillery is taking shape.

The facility has been under construction on Jefferson Street, near Clay Street, since late last year. It’s still months away from completion, but many of the key elements, including the still, are in place today. The distillery is expected to have a grand opening on Derby Eve 2018.,,

…The distillery was designed by architect Doug Pierson, of Carrboro, N.C.-based Pod Architecture + Design. Prodigy Construction Corp. in Louisville is the contractor on the project. READ ENTIRE ARTICLE


L.A. Transplant Joins NCSU College of Design

pod_Doug at desjDoug Pierson, AIA, to teach third-year architecture design studio.

Architect Douglas Pierson, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C, principal and co-founder of the award-winning firm pod architecture + design in Carrboro, NC, will begin teaching a third-year design studio this month for the Department of Architecture, North Carolina State University, College of Design. He will be joined by fellow third-year instructors Matthew Griffith of In Situ and Don Kranbuehl of Clark Nexen.

 Originally from Washington, DC, Pierson attended the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., and the Lettres program at the Université Paul Valéry in Montpelier, France, before earning his Masters in Architecture degree at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va.

Pierson spent the early years of his career with architecture firms in Europe and Australia before joining Hodgetts and Fung Design Associates in Culver City, CA. His next move was to Frank Gehry’s Los Angeles office Gehry Partners LLP before he and his partner/wife, Youn Choi, launched pod a+d in LA. Choi is an accomplished environmental graphics designer.

In 2016, the couple moved their family and firm to Carrboro, where they pursue modern, progressive academic, commercial, civic, cultural, and residential projects. Among their completed projects are such award-winning, nationally acclaimed buildings as Connie & Ted’s restaurant in West Hollywood, CA, and The Green Building, the first LEED Platinum building in downtown Louisville, KY. Their work has been featured in numerous newspaper, journals, and magazines.

The third-year design studio introduces Doug Pierson to the faculty and students at the NCSU College of Design.

 For more information on Pierson and pod a+d, visit

About pod architecture + design:

pod a+d offers all architectural design services that connect building, environment, and identity because we believe in the integration of architecture and design disciplines throughout our projects.  Exteriors, interiors, engineering, furnishings and finishes, equipment, financial feasibility, scheduling, construction, and the environmental context – these are the contributing elements that inform our integrated approach to each architectural project’s design.  More information:



Corten steel helps residence blend into surroundings seamlessly

Piedmont Retreat6

Located in a wooded cul-de-sac neighborhood in Durham, N.C., this single-family residence, nicknamed Piedmont Retreat, is wrapped in vertical Corten steel panels facing the street, and vast expanses of floor-to-ceiling glass and cantilevered windows in the back that overlook the surrounding forest.


The owners reached out to Raleigh, N.C.-based Tonic Design and Tonic Construction to design and build the residence. “It’s a corner lot,” says Vincent Petrarca, co-owner, designer and contractor at Tonic Design, “so the house really had to respond to the two streets. And for us, trying to create a place that’s calm and a getaway, the idea of even a few streetlights at night on the corner, the house really had to turn its back on the street. So the house created this hard shell to that side of the property, and then it really opens up, like a geode, looking down the Piedmont ravine into the mature forest.” READ MORE…


INHABITAT: “Weathered steel and reclaimed materials blend a modern home into the woods.”

Piedmont Retreat5

by Lisa Wang

Raleigh-based Tonic Design completed a creative new home that plays with the contrast between old and new through the use of reclaimed and contemporary materials. Tucked into the forests of Durham, the Piedmont Retreat is a 3,800-square-foot single-family home that embraces the outdoors in its use of weathered materials and large cantilevered windows. Reclaimed materials, like oak flooring and factory lights, help soften the modern steel and glass construction. READ MORE…


Award-winning L.A. Architecture Firm Relocates to Carrboro, NC

pod_Doug at desjDecember 5, 2017 (Carrboro, NC) – Architect Doug Pierson, AIA, LEED AP, BD+ (left), and environmental graphics designer Youn Choi (below left) —  partners in life and in pod architecture + design (pod a+d) — have joined the flurry of businesses relocating to North Carolina’s Triangle region. They’ve moved their architectural firm from Los Angeles to Carrboro, where they’re currently settling into new offices in The Station, the town’s 1882 train depot.

Pierson and Choi relocated to the Triangle because they were ready for a lifestyle change and looking for excellent schools for their two children, Pierson said. They’d also visited the region many times since Pierson’s parents live here.

Spod_Youn standing.jpgo why Carrboro?

“Carrboro has a vibrant community, a diverse culture, great food, and music,” he said. “Carrboro shares all the best aspects of the Triangle and keeps us engaged not just in town, but with Durham, Raleigh and beyond.” 

With experience in all building types, pod a+d is a hybrid firm, actually.

Pierson, an award-winning architect, worked in Frank Gehry’s Los Angeles office before co-founding his previous firm — form, environment, research (fer) studio L.L.P. — in Inglewood, CA. He leads pod a+d’s architectural studio.

A native of South Korea, Youn Choi studied environmental design and architecture at UCLA. She worked with Disney Imagineering and Selbert Perkins Design, an international graphics design firm, before co-founding pod a+d, where she directs signage and wayfinding, interior design, and experiential graphics (the orchestration of typography, color, imagery, form, technology and, content to create “environments that communicate”).

Licensed in five states and staffed with team members who bring LEED AP and BD+C credentials to the table, pod a+d provides all architectural services from concept design through construction administration.  Their work has been featured in numerous newspaper, journals, and magazines. The firm’s address at The Station is 201-A East Main Street, Carrboro, NC 27510. For more information, visit

podand_logo1About pod architecture + design:

pod a+d offers all architectural design services that connect building, environment, and identity because we believe in the integration of architecture and design disciplines throughout our projects.  Exteriors, interiors, engineering, furnishings and finishes, equipment, financial feasibility, scheduling, construction, and the environmental context – these are the contributing elements that inform our integrated approach to each architectural project’s design.  More information:



Tonic Design Partner Appointed to Raleigh Appearance Commission

The Raleigh City Council has appointed architect Katherine Hogan, AIA, co-owner KH_headshotof Tonic Design, to the Raleigh Appearance Commission.

The City Council established The Appearance Commission in 1973 to provide guidance, advice, and recommendations regarding the visual quality and aesthetic characteristics of the City of Raleigh. The commission consists of 15 members, the majority of whom have special training or experience in architecture, landscape architecture, horticulture, city planning, or related design fields. Members serve for two years before they must be reappointed by the City Council.

The Appearance Commission also appoints standing committees for special design-related outreach and education efforts such as the Sir Walter Raleigh Awards, which recognize outstanding new contributions to the city’s character, environment, and appearance.

Hogan and her partner and co-owner at Tonic Design, Vincent Petrarca, have been the recipients of the Sir Walter Awards four times, most recently for renovating/renewing the building at 1700 Glenwood Avenue that now houses Form & Function, the building owners’ retail shop.

The Commission meets twice a month in the Council Chamber of the Raleigh Municipal Building. The meetings are open to the public.

For more information on the Raleigh Appearance Commission, go to

For more information on Katherine Hogan, AIA, visit

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