Extract Junk, Inject Living
New Floor Throughout the Coach
New Glass-tile Backsplashes
New live edge maple tabletop with epoxy "river" under construction.
New Stair Treads and Trim
We seriously flirted with the idea of replacing our 2014 Thor Palazzo—a 35' diesel pusher on a Freightliner chassis—with something shiny, new and larger earlier this year. After all, we reasoned, we'd finally sold our home and were beginning a new life of full-time RV travel. A second bathroom, a larger and more comfortable living room, and perhaps a fireplace and dishwasher would be pretty sweet, wouldn't it?
In the end we couldn't pull the trigger—for a host of reasons, but the biggest of them being the fact that the only coach we liked well enough to even consider replacing the Palazzo with was a $300K+ Entegra Aspire 44B. We loved it, but the bottom line is no one seemed particularly excited about loaning us the money for one (we have an impressive balance sheet but no pension or demonstrable income), and we're too tight to carve that much out of our savings and investments to pay cash right now. We have actually been quite happy with the Palazzo, and in many ways it is the perfect size and has everything we really need to be quite comfortable and happy, So, in the end, we decided we'd simply do a few things to make it slightly more comfortable and quite a bit more aesthetically pleasing, and we'll concentrate on enjoying a bit of guiltless travel and experiences for now.
Toward that end, we've spent the last month replacing the floor in the Palazzo with a walnut-look luxury vinyl that looks for all the world like real wood without the concerns of moisture incursion or scratching from, say, a dog's toenails. The bland, kitchen faux backsplash tile and the non-existent bathroom backsplash have been upgraded to a beautiful (though somewhat ridiculously expensive) glass tile installed with flexible silicone adhesive and grout to withstand vibration and temperature changes. I bought a snap kit off Amazon and made a new carpeted floor mat to replace the beige carpet one the motorhome came with and was beginning to biodegrade even if it didn't look tacky. We've installed a free-standing electric fireplace to help heat the coach on chilly nights and give the living area a warm and cozy feeling, and Margaret found a couple of fantastic area rugs that pull together all of the colors of the new backsplash and furniture just perfectly. On the technology side, we're installing a WeBoost cellular booster, we're upgrading our Dish satellite TV setup later this month, and we're seriously considering upgrading our house batteries to the Battleborn Lithium ones that are quite popular with the YouTubers we follow when we either win the lottery or scrape together enough surplus cash for that expense.
In April, we're having new Flexsteel furniture (captains chairs, couch, ottomans, and banquet seating) installed by BraddandHall in Elkhart, IN (RV Mecca). Not only will the new furniture be more attractive (a pleasant off white UltraSuede to reduce the drabness of the existing tan/beige/brown motif of the coach), it will be more comfortable as all of it will have upgraded padding and be covered in the same high-quality UltraSuede many high-end motorhomes have. The coup de grâce, however, will be our new dinette table top and custom end tables. A local woodworker is crafting a "river" tabletop from a slab of maple with a live edge. The tabletop will replace the serviceable but somewhat pedestrian Corian one the coach comes with, and the matching maple end tables will provide a stylish roost for mugs of coffee or the all-important servings of adult beverages that (rumor has it) may make an occasional appearance.
We're really excited about these changes, and we truly believe we're going to end up with a coach nearly as comfortable and attractive as ones costing two or three times as much. We'll be sure to post pictures of the final product once it's all done.
New Driver's-side Carpet Mats