There’s No Place Like Homes

The winners of our first readers’ choice Best of the St. Croix Valley 2016: Homes Edition.

Our Best of the St. Croix Valley celebration continues this month with all of the winners in our homes-related categories. That’s right: Last October, you voted, and last month we presented the majority of winners in the readers’ choice survey. Now we present the second batch of finalists, all of these builders, designers, decorators or others in some other way related to that very special place we call “home.”

Note that this section includes other living spaces, notably the great outdoors, so essential to Valley life, and the many options available for Valley residents’ golden years. And so, without further ado, the Best of the St. Croix Valley: Homes Edition.

Best Landscape Designer/Architect: Abrahamson Nurseries
In the St. Croix Valley since 1928, Abrahamson Nurseries has developed three locations all along the river valley—and plenty of loyal customers along the way. The full-service garden center and landscape design center “has very knowledgeable staff,” retail manager Joelle Nielsen says, “and we’ve got a little bit of everything.”
Runners-up: Heins Nursery, Willow River

Best Home Service: Anderson Heating
The finest in heating, air-conditioning, and air-quality services and products serves the Hudson area with pride, with highly trained professionals and a dependable crew.
Runners-up: Comfort by Design, Dad’s Plumbing and Heating

Best Home Furnishings: The Lived-in Room
After 11 years in the business, this small consignment furniture and accessories store knows how to cater to its customers. Taking in a variety of items, from new Pottery Barn or Pier One items to vintage and upcycled pieces, the store really does have a little bit of everything. Arranged in a series of vignettes, Lived-in’s showroom suggests design ideas, and works with many interior designers to create functional spaces for all styles and design challenges. “We have high standards for the furniture we take in,” owner Celine Brandon says.
Runners-up: Simonet’s Furniture Co., Alfresco Casual Living

Best Interior Designer: Chris Dillingham, Hello the House
Designer Chris Dillingham knows how to make house décor pop. Interior design comes naturally to Dillingham, and her interest in tailoring her work to each customer shows in the unique results.
Runners-up: Bria Hammel, Bria Hammel Interiors; Brynn Alden, Brynn Alden Interiors

Best Builder/Remodeler: Creative Homes, INC.
According to marketing coordinator Lauren Parsons, Creative Homes, Inc. builds homes, not houses, using a foolproof process focusing on personalization and flexibility for each homeowner. “We take pride knowing that we are creating and delivering an unmatched experience revolving around our customers, trade partners and our employees,” Parsons says.
Runners-up: McCormack Classic Construction, Cates Fine Homes

Best Senior Living Residence: Boutwell’s Landing
Offering a full array of living options, from independent townhomes to skilled-nursing homes and memory care, Boutwell’s Landing is “complemented by everyday conveniences, 130 acres of natural land and parkland, restaurant dining and a movie theater,” says Billie Jo Fox, community relations director. Transitional help and rehab are also offered, all in an environment that makes for an easy transition for families and residents.
Runners-up: Croixdale, Presbyterian Homes