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Faux Finishing at Burn by Rocky Patel at Mercota in Naples Florida

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August 31, 2015

Faux Finishing encompasses soooo many amazing creative ways to decorate walls, ceilings and furniture. In the weeks and months to come I will be discussing all these different types of finishes.

This past week we found ourselves back working Burn by Rocky Patel in the Mercota shopping plaza in Naples Fl. In the Fall of 2009 we were commissioned to apply finishes throughout the whole space. It was a challenging, yet a fun project. This cigar lounge (don’t ever call it a bar) ? has an eclectic array of finishes and décor unlike anything you have ever seen. Rocky Patel had a vision of combining styles from all his world travels into a Sophisticated Eclectic mix of Old Cuban Walls, Persian Night Spots and Miami Beach Modern. all in one spot. We applied Old World distressed plaster finishes to the walls, Faux Walnut graining to the beams and bar, plus accent walls , graced with exotic metallic foils.

This week we were commissioned back to re due the accent walls with metallic foils.


The accent wall in the VIP area was done 6 years ago. Well, in “cigar lounge life” that is equivalent to thirty years!  So considering that, the walls held up pretty good. Rocky is opening up a new club called Kava across the street. For the grand opening he wanted to have Burn looking as great as it did on day one.

James the manager at Burn had originally asked me to just, touch up the wall. I explained the pros & Cons of repairing the damaged areas as opposed to re foiling the wall. He agreed to have us re due the whole wall, so away we went. James would let us in first thing every morning, which is no easy task for a bar manager who is just shutting down the club at 2:00am,

Along with the wall in the VIP section, we completed two other areas. We were there a total of four days.
It was a nice change of pace for the crew. Around 2: 00pm the men would come in and start lighting up there cigars, usually with a nice cocktail. We received many compliments and a few potential clients took our cards. One of our crew members is a smoker, so he was in faux finishing heaven knowing he did not have to leave the building to get his smoke fix in!

The accent wall in the VIP area was done 6 years ago. Well, in “cigar lounge life” that is equivalent to thirty years! So considering that, the walls held up pretty good. Rocky is opening up a new club called Kava across the street. For the grand opening he wanted to have Burn looking as great as it did on day one.

Leslie & Bryant preparing the wall for Foil:

Our “Main Man Mario” applying the Foil. He loves what he does and his work is proof of that. When I met Mario, he didn’t even know what Faux Finishing was. Now he’s teaching me a thing or two every day!

Bryant is a seasoned faux finisher who has worked for some of the top companies in the industry. He even has gone to China assisting Sean Crosby in teaching the Art of Faux Finishing. We are honored to have Bryant working with us these days!

The VIP lounge. Grab a cigar and cognac and come sit down!

Holy hologram Batman!

One of the special qualities about this foil is its “rainbow” effect similar to the inside of a prism. As light shines on the foil, it is reflected back in a rainbow of colors.

Celebrities will do anything to get photographed next to one of Spiegel’s Decorative Finishes Walls!

Here’s the ex-Mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani asking Rocky for the number of whoever did that beautiful wall!

Well it was good to be back at Burn last week. One thing I didn’t miss, was coming home smelling like a burnt cigar every day!

When we originally completed the job in 2009, Faux Effects World did a spread on the project. If you would like to read that article and see some of the other finishes we applied, click here.

If you are interested in this type of accent treatment or any of our exclusive line of finishes for your home or commercial space, contact us here for an appointment!

Decorative Painting in Naples Florida

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Decorative Painting in Naples Florida: To Faux or Not to Faux That Is My Question

I can’t tell you, how many times during my thirty-something career in the faux finishing industry that I have heard a client or a designer say “ I thought faux was out”. I also can’t tell you how many times I cringe when I hear this as well. The thing is, I get it. There are plenty of awful finishes performed by people who have not perfected there craft, and have left a bad taste in clients and designers mouths (ex: the photo below); this shouldn’t bring down an entire industry. So, let’s talk about why designers and homeowners have started making these statements.


When I first started in this trade in the early eighties it was more of a secret club or a sub-culture to the painting industry. There were only a handful of schools around the country that taught faux finishing and you had to be very lucky (like I was J) to have a chance to work with an old master to learn this secret trade. It was not easy to get your foot in the door back then; the few who got through, were appreciative and dedicated to the trade. It was not about making a quick buck. it was about dedicating yourself to a trade that would take lots of practice and lots of discipline; similar to mastering the craft of an instrument to become a concert musician.


Fast forward to the 2000 to 2012 era of Faux and a lot has changed. Everyone and their cousin is a faux finisher! How could this have happened? Well, faux finishing schools started sprouting up in every town and it seemed on every block. Home depot started carrying faux finishing supplies for the do-it-yourselfer. You could take a two day class get a certificate and you were a certified faux finisher. Or take a Sunday afternoon class at home depot or Lowes and there was no need to hire a pro. All you needed was your natural sea sponge and a few colored paints and you were all set.

The economy was booming in the late nineties and early two thousands and building and remodeling were going through the roof! There was an increase in demand for faux finishing during this time; the only problem was, there were not enough quality finishers to do the work. On top of that, so many clients were not educated on faux finishing and could not tell a good job from a bad job. I could not believe the poor quality of work I was seeing. The funny thing was, most decorative painters didn’t even know how bad it was then; just the idea of having faux finished walls was exciting to most!

Well the years went on and designers and clients started getting more educated on the subject. The economy in 2008 hit bottom and nobody could even sell there houses. If you had some bad sponge painted walls “faux-get-a-bout-it” nobody wanted to buy your house. So, designers and brokers started advising clients to just paint out the rooms with a flat off white or taupe if they wanted to sell there house. This started the bad taste in many peoples mouths about faux. They started thinking if I want to resell one day it will be harder to sell, with this crazy sponge painting all over there house.


When the economy hit bottom the whole world changed. People lost there houses and only the very talented and strong willed faux finishers survived the crash. Many of the wannabe faux finishes have drifted out to see and are pursuing all sorts of different careers. I wish them all the best, but, now it’s time to rebuild the faux finishing reputation in this world. Well, in short we are. There are less schools and more serious students. The work is looking better and better out there. The clients and designers are more educated and can tell the difference between bad, good and sensational (like Spiegel’s Decorative Finishes) work these days.


There is a new surge in Naples, Florida for contemporary design in lieu of the Old World Tuscan look, which was the rage for years. Many designers I have spoke with see no place for faux finishing and tend to paint every room in a flat paint. Can you see me just cringing again every time they say that! If they would just experience one of our contemporary finishes such as Lusterstone in a soft pearlescent grey or our Venetian Plaster treatment in a taupe color with a pearlized mica wax polished over it, they would never look back! Decorative painting in Naples Florida by Spiegel’s Decorative Finishes will give your interior a touch of grandiose design!


If I am lucky enough to explain to someone on the fence about faux finishes being in style or out of style, here’s what I usually say: Faux finishing is a design medium just like wallpaper is. Applied correctly, in the right color & texture, with a talented set of hands, will always be an enhancement to a space. Any enhancement to a space; creating a mood with elegance will NEVER go out of style!


Venetian Plaster in Naples Florida

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venetian plaster in Naples, Florida is more than just a trend it is a staple of design within the home. It is this subtle backdrop that creates the ambiance for the rest of the room. Venetian plaster is now a term that means so much more than just where its true roots come for. We are noticing that this term is being used to describe many plasters. Although the correct description of Venetian is typically described as layers of plaster applied in thin layers ultimately being burnished with a metal trowel creating a glass like effect. Un-burnished Venetian plaster in Naples, Florida is seen quite a bit as well. It can be describe as a truly matte finish created with plaster, a flawless wall really. No bumps or imperfections at all. To me there is nothing more beautiful than seeing a room that has been decorated by a professional with a Venetian plaster backdrop.

To see more examples of Venetian Plaster visit my gallery section located in the menu above or visit more of our projects live as we put them up on Facebook. Click here to follow our page: HERE