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Detroit is only one of two things for two kinds of people. To automobile enthusiasts, it is the heart of the American automotive industry and the home of Ford Motor Company’s founder, Henry Ford. For music lovers, however, Detroit isn’t just the Motor City– it’s Motown, the legendary record label credited for producing the Jackson 5, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and Diana Ross, to name a few.
Automobile and music lovers alike enjoy Detroit’s architectural monuments and rustic, historic sites and homes. Building and renovating the city’s homes are the Detroit area’s finest contractors, of which the top 14 are listed here.
14) MJ Whelan Construction
620 North Milford Rd. Milford, MI 48381
Since 1990, MJ Whelan Construction has been building custom, luxury homes and has become a leading firm in the industry after earning various awards. They are the proud winners of a variety of award categories of the Detroit Home Design Awards and have been voted Best Custom Home Builder in the Huron Valley People’s Choice Awards for seven years in a row. Some of their work has also captured media attention and has been featured in several magazines, including Builder/Architect Magazine.
The firm specializes in rustic styles, with an emphasis on craftsman details, but also provides French, contemporary, and coastal styles. The team prides itself on ensuring that each home reflects each client’s lifestyle.
13) Kastler Construction, Inc.
425 S. Main Street, Clawson, MI 48017
For over 22 years, Kastler Construction, Inc. has been serving the greater Southeast Michigan area with their premier, custom home building services. Moreover, they have conducted home addition and home remodeling projects that align with the company’s vision: to construct and transform clients’ houses into their dream homes.
The firm does not like confining itself to one particular style and has worked on various homes with designs ranging from traditional to modern and contemporary. Their excellent work earned them an award from the Detroit Design Awards and a feature in Detroit Home.
12) Whitelaw Custom Homes
6490 Norham Rd, Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301
Company founder Christopher Whitelaw III can proudly say that he has the benefit of experience after working in the industry for over three decades (and counting). Whitelaw displays a signature trademark for custom, luxury homes, as well as period expansions and renovations.
The firm’s portfolio is comprised of innovative designs showcasing spaces with built-in features ranging from stainless steel to mahogany. The secret to their ingenious and high-class style is their partnership with several award-winning architectural firms and interior and landscaping design firms with whom they have formed long-lasting relationships.
11) Cranbrook Custom Homes
13001 23 Mile Road, Ste. 200 Shelby Township, MI 48315
Founded by Sebastian Lombardo through a strategic and unique partnership with renowned architect Stephen McKay, Cranbrook Custom Homes is one of Michigan’s leading custom home builders with various awards to attest to their skills and fine craftsmanship. The firm has been hailed as the Readers’ Choice Best Overall Home in the Detroit Home Design Awards and named Developer and Builder of the Year in 2007 and 2011, respectively. They have also had the privilege of being featured in ABC’s hit show, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, back in 2006.
Cranbrook mostly attributes their excellent work to their architectural advantage. A leading figure in the architecture industry with the honor of being featured on Professional Builder magazines 40 Under 40 list in 2012, Stephen McKay himself leads the company’s design department. All projects are given the benefit of his rich, international design experience.
10) Meadowlark Design + Build
3250 W. Liberty Rd. Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Meadowlark Builders is the outcome of Kirk Brandon and Doug Selby’s decision to leave their respective careers in accounting and chemistry over two decades ago. Their brave decision led to the creation of an award-winning firm celebrated for its fine work in designing and constructing luxurious, custom-made homes and high-end remodels. A nationally recognized design + build firm, Meadowlark has been widely featured in the press, most notably in Forbes magazine.
The company is also decorated with various awards, such as the GuildMaster with Highest Distinction Award for Exemplary Customer Service in the Construction Industry and the Gold Award for Green Remodel, in recognition of their green building work.
9) La Marco Homes
777 S. Eton St, Birmingham, MI 48009
Founded and owned by Greg La Marco, La Marco Homes has made a name for itself through its innovative designs and specialization in modern architecture. With rich design experience, La Marco has led his firm to become an award-winning company notable for building luxury, custom homes whose prices range in the millions. The firm finished first place in the prestigious Detroit Home Design Awards, won GOLD in the National Association of Home Builders’ (NAHB) Best in American Living Awards, and was featured in an issue of Modern Home Builder back in 2016.
The firm also provides excellent lower-level building services. Their portfolio includes an array of unused basements that have been transformed into luxurious living spaces and wine cellars.
900 W. University Drive Suite Rochester, MI 48307
Originally founded by Arthur Szliter, Arteva Homes has been in the industry since 2003 and is now run by Szliter’s former business partner Vito Terracciano, with the aid of Szliter’s son, Brian. Both Terracciano and the younger Szliter are licensed builders and have been featured in Dbusiness and Hour Detroit. Their excellent leadership and craftsmanship have earned various awards and recognition from several acclaimed award-giving bodies in the industry. Arteva is a five-time recipient of the Star Diamond Award from the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences and has presented the Best Model Home in several competitions ranging from the Parade of Homes to the Detroit Home Design Awards.
The firm is also the proud creator and sponsor of IdeaShowHouse, which was pioneered to introduce the infusion of all the latest home building technology, designs, and trends through the collaboration of different companies.
7) Petrucci Johnson Group
2930 S. Telegraph, Bloomfield Township, MI 48302
Established by Mike Petrucci and Eric Johnson, the Petrucci Johnson Group is an organization composed of three teams, each with its own special focus: design, build, and restoration. With over 30 years of experience as its guide, the firm has built a portfolio filled with high-end, custom-made homes with either brick or mahogany finishes. The firm prides itself on having a 24/7 emergency restoration program that they maintain with their partner, the Professional Restoration Group, a certified company in fire and smoke restoration as well as mold and water damage.
The firm also has a sole division that focuses on cabinetry. Moreover, they have in-house specialists to attend to your every need, be it plumbing or architecture.
6) Olde World Homes
360 Hamilton Row Birmingham, MI 48009
Most firms like branding themselves as experts in achieving authentic European-style homes, but only a handful of them can actually show for it. Better known for their work alongside VanBrouck & Associates in their joint company, LUXE Homes Design + Build, Olde World Homes, founded by Bryan Leith, dubs itself as the “new generation of elegant luxury homes.” As passionate artisans of their craft, their team has traveled widely across Europe in order to replicate European architectural styles. From popular Tudor styles in England to villas in the French countryside, they have seen and mastered it all. Olde World Homes is recognized by its innovative designs, authentic period architecture and unsurpassed quality of materials.
They offer precise details and an accurate eye both for construction and design, rather than “watered down” ideas to better fit a budget. According to them, luxurious need not be enormous or spacious– to be luxurious is to precisely achieve every beautiful element necessary.
5) MacLeish Building
650 E. Big Beaver Cornerstone Village, Suite F Troy, MI
Currently manned by its fourth generation of builders, MacLeish Building has a rich and profound history rooted in a family of custom home builders. After learning the workings of the trade and craft at a tender age from his grandfather, Dan MacLeish was set for a life of building some of Michigan’s finest homes. He began his career in 1964 while he was a student at the University of Michigan after building a home with his grandfather, Archie, which would be the precursor of a very active business.
MacLeish’s family tradition of home building is celebrated through the awards and accolades they have received throughout the decades, such as being in the Building Industry Association’s (BIA) Hall of Fame, being heralded as BIA’s Builder of the Year, and being awarded BIA’s Distinguished Service Award.
4) Hemphill Builders
32731 Franklin Rd. Franklin, MI 48025
Now on its second generation of builders, Hemphill Builders was originally founded by Jerry Hemphill in 1979. Now, with nearly half a century into the industry, the firm stands as strong as the day it was first founded. Their projects, often estates, have been featured in several press publications, such as the Detroit Home Magazine and the Modern Home Builder’s Magazine. Their timeless designs are reminiscent of old-world, European styles and give hints of regalness through their brick finishes.
Hemphill Builders are pioneers of the “Original French Country Estate,” whose style they brought to Michigan nearly 20 years ago. To perfect the estate, Hemphill Builders imported stones from abroad and applied the latest bricklaying techniques. The end result was a timeless classic that the firm still regards as their signature look.
3) Matthew G. Strickfaden and Associates, Inc.
34665 Brittany Dr, Farmington Hills, MI 48335
With over 25 years of experience, Matthew Strickfaden has built and renovated award-winning homes, some of which have been published in magazines like Hour Detroit, wherein two of the firm’s projects were hailed as Home of the Year. The company is known for its contemporary, upper straight designs; beautiful landscaping; and traditional, neo-eclectic styles. Strickfaden and his team are also proud winners of the M Award from the Masonry Institute of Michigan and are the sole firm to feature two homes on the American Institute of Architects’ Homes on the Lake Tour.
The firm is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has a rating of A+. Moreover, Buildzoom names the company the highest rated custom-home builder in metro Detroit.
3005 University Drive Auburn Hills, MI 48326
The association of the Moceri name with fine craftsmanship dates as far back as the 1950s to the family’s first generation of builders. The firm is led by Dominic Moceri, whose great foresight and vision enabled the company to become one of the industry’s brightest trailblazers. Aside from residential projects, Morceri has also worked on commercial projects, such as golf courses and senior living homes, has built luxurious rental homes, and has maintained award-winning communities. The firm’s most notable community, Villa Montclair, has received accolades from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) in the Best of 55+ Housing Awards category. Having served over 55,000 families in Michigan for the past six decades, Moceri’s work comprises much of the Detroit area’s residential landscape.
Moceri’s impeccable design is perfected through the streamlining of their designing and building. Award-winning architect Tringali has been working with Morceri and his team for over 20 years now, and it is their strategic partnership that has kept the Morceri brand of quality and excellence alive to this day.
1) LUXE Homes Design + Build
360 Hamilton Row Birmingham, MI 48009
LUXE Homes Design + Build is the product of the combination of multi-award winning firms VanBrouck & Associates and Olde World Homes. Together, the four founders have over 35 years of experience providing their customers the highest quality luxury homes. John and Donna VanBrouck have a solid professional reputation after having designed over 1,500 distinctive homes throughout their career. They have won over 150 design awards and have traveled extensively throughout Europe to better study and photograph their architecture to ensure the authenticity of their designs. Construction is handled by Bryan and Rachel Leith, both of whom are responsible for having built the most beautiful custom, award-winning homes in the area.
The firm prides itself for being a six- and eight-time winner of the Detroit Home Design Awards under the Best Overall Home and Reader’s Choice Award categories. LUXE offers all-inclusive, fully-integrated design and construction services (including talented in-house interior design teams) with their first priority being “exceeding their clients’ expectations” and providing a smooth and pleasurable home building experience from the initial design stage through the final stages of construction.
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