Rooms with a View


For 21 years, the Southport Congregational Church in Southport, Connecticut has hosted a wildly popular design show, Rooms with a View (RWAV). RWAV is unique in that it is not a full show house, but rather, a sound bite version of a designer show house. Each year, 12 designers are invited to create 6′ by 8′ vignettes, staged with 8-foot ceilings and three walls, and located in the library and great hall of the historic stone church. And this year, I’m one of the lucky designers!


The theme this year is “Home for the Holidays,” so you’ll find my Nantucket-style take on the concept in the library.  I don’t want to give anything away–I want you to come see it for yourself!–but I will tell you that its designed to be a peaceful island retreat, overlooking Nantucket Harbor, and in an elegant room that’s ready for a loving reunion with family and friends.

Nantucket by Sondy Rexford

photo credit: Sondy Rexford

The show opens on Friday, November 13 at 10:00 a.m. There’s a Gala Party Friday evening, featuring cocktails and hot d’oeuvres from some of the best restaurants around. Saturday opens with a Fashion Show and a Royal English Tea, and the evening features a Champagne Tour of the Vignettes and Gourmet Dinner. And it’s not over yet! On Sunday, there’s a Gingerbread House Workshop in the main tent at 2 p.m.

This spectacular event was created by the late, renowned designer Albert Hadley, and continues under the leadership of Parker Rogers. Thom Filicia is the celebrity Honorary Chairperson.

Rooms with a View is open to the public on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, November 13th to 15th, and in addition to the vignettes, you’ll want to visit The Shops at Rooms with a View, with more than 30 vendors selling crafts, antiques and decorative accessories. If you need a nosh, you can stop at the Marketplace Cafe.

Sound like fun? The weekend promises to be one of the most festive events of the season. In addition, over the past 21 years, RWAV has raised more than $1.4 million. Proceeds support the work of the church and its many local and international missions, including Alpha Community Services, Bridgeport Council of Churches, Bridgeport Rescue Mission, Burroughs Community Center, Center for Women and Families, Eagle Hill School Scholarship Fund, Emerge, Inc., Family Re-Entry, FSW, Grasmere by the Sea, Homes for the Brave, Horizons, Janus House, The Kennedy Center, Operation Hope, The Pilot House, Project Learn, Prospect House, Simply Smiles, St. George’s Soup Kitchen, and Visiting Nurses of Connecticut.

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Don’t miss it!

Learn more here.