Building cat furnishings won’t be the route an architect would anticipate to take, but it surely definitely wasn’t unwelcome. That’s what occurred with Mario Arbore, although, and he’s by no means seemed again.

“In my practice, I’ve had the pleasure of doing a wide variety of projects, including restaurants, home renovations, offices, furniture showrooms and much more,” says Mario, founding father of Square Paws and principal of Arbore Design. After shifting his structure observe from New York to Florida in 2011, Mario skilled a lull in his enterprise in 2014 that lasted just a few months. A buddy prompt constructing cat homes.

“I pondered what I could say and do as an architect for my cats and my home,” he says. “It started out with a lighthouse, since cats like to be up high, and I wanted to make something fairly compact in terms of floor space. That idea led me to consider other building types, animals, chairs, etc. It became a creative outlet for me as an architect, an artist and a craftsman.”

Mario’s architectural expertise and creativity for cat furnishings led to a collaboration with the North Shore Animal League, which wished to dedicate a room to benefactor Billy Joel. Mario designed furnishings and cubbies within the shapes of amplifiers, a piano/cat physique and Empire State Building.

Impressed with the Billy Joel room, Susan Whittred, DVM, govt director of the Patricia H. Ladew Foundation, Inc., requested Mario to contribute designs to the sanctuary.

The basis’s namesake, Pat Ladew, had began rescuing cats within the Nineteen Seventies when an Oyster Bay resident moved, abandoning two dozen deserted cats. Hungry and fending for themselves, the cats started wandering the city in quest of meals and heat, which generally led to damage when the cats climbed inside automobile engines. They additionally started reproducing. Pat heard about what was occurring and got here to their help by giving them meals, shelter, medical care and houses. When phrase received out that she rescued cats, folks started dumping much more of them off at her doorstep. By 1975, she couldn’t soak up any extra cats whereas looking for them houses, so she bought a home to function a shelter. Cats had been handled by voluntary veterinarians, and funds got here from donations in addition to from Pat (who was an heiress). Learn extra about Patricia H. Ladew Foundation at

At the time, her buy led to some misconceptions. The first was that she was eccentric, and the second was that she purchased a mansion. “In fact,” Mario says. “It was a fairly dilapidated house that went through many upgrades over the years.”

Patricia handed away in 2002, however her shelter continues on. In the newest redesign, Mario honored her imaginative and prescient of a free-roaming sanctuary and likewise made it really feel just like the cats “own” the home. “This would play off the ‘eccentric heiress’ misconception but also give us a spring-point for our design,” he says. “The living room would again become a living room, the kitchen a kitchen, etc.”

Mario’s design creates a home-like really feel but additionally incorporates parts cats want.

“Open, cageless concepts are much less stressful on cats,” Dr. Whittred says. “They have areas where they can have alone time and cubbies where they can feel safe but at the same time lots of open areas where they can interact with people visiting in hopes that they may find homes.”

Other issues had been sustainability and that it will be simple to maintain clear, Dr. Whittred says.

The basis’s board members had been thrilled with the outcomes. The North Shore Animal League and Patricia H. Ladew Foundation can function inspiration to any shelter, Mario says.

“I encourage folks to think ‘outside the box’ themselves and to be creative in whatever way they know how to make their shelter environment as warm and welcoming as possible,” he says. “To be creative in their individual way. And to have fun along the way!”


Patricia’s authentic imaginative and prescient was a free-roaming sanctuary that made it really feel just like the cats “own” the home.
Many folks thought that Patricia had bought a mansion. In reality, the home was pretty dilapidated and went by many upgrades through the years.
Changes to the home included sustainability and that it will be simple to maintain clear.



The home’s precise kitchen grew to become the cats’ kitchen and options every kind of enjoyable and wonderful particulars. ©GraphiteNYC
Pat’s Room contains a cat-scale duplicate of the entrance of the home – which has scratchable columns and a number of ranges for climbing and napping. ©GraphiteNYC
A downstairs cat room grew to become the rec room the place cats can play and lounge. ©GraphiteNYC

The décor represents a mid-century trendy aesthetic. Sagamore Hill was President Theodore Roosevelt’s “summer White House,” and the city can really feel like a dwelling museum. The thought behind the cat sanctuary was to pay tribute to the dwelling museum thought by feeling “frozen in time,” however with a 1960/Nineteen Seventies really feel. Unlike a museum, nonetheless, the sanctuary is alive with cat “homeowners.”

The indoor catwalk extends 150 ft so cats can discover from above.

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here