Spanish Style Home: Design Inspiration and Tips

Origins of Spanish Colonial Revival Style

Are you ready for a home remodel? The Spanish Style or Spanish Colonial Revival style home, born in the early 20th century in the United States, blends Spanish colonial and Mediterranean designs, radiating warmth and elegance. Particularly prominent in California, this architectural style has deeply shaped the state’s landscape. 

This style resonated with so many for its connection to America’s colonial history and its suitability for California’s warm climate. With influences from Spanish, Mexican, Pueblo, and Moorish cultures, the Spanish Colonial Revival style crafted a unique identity, enriched by wrought iron and wooden accents from Mediterranean traditions.

GreatBuildz is a free service that connects homeowners in Southern California with reliable, pre-screened contractors, and then provides ongoing project support to ensure a stress-free experience. We talk to homeowners every day about the most important things to check when creating your dream home–read on for our best advice.

Spanish style home green

Features of Spanish Style Interiors

Spanish style interiors are characterized by a blend of rustic charm and elegant simplicity. Key features of these interiors include lime-washed walls, arched doorways, and outdoor spaces like patios and gardens. These features create a warm and familiar atmosphere that is both fashionable and timeless.

Lime-wash Paint 

One of the defining characteristics of Spanish Colonial Revival interiors is the presence of lime-washed walls. Lime-washing involves applying a mixture of lime and water to the walls, resulting in a soft, textured look that enhances the rustic charm of the space. White stucco walls create a bright and airy atmosphere, reflecting light and making the interiors feel more spacious.

Arched Doorways

Arched doorways are another prominent feature of Spanish style interiors. These graceful arches add elegance and visual interest, creating a sense of flow and continuity between rooms. The curved lines of the arches soften the overall design and provide a contrast to the straight lines of the walls and furniture.

Spanish style arched walkway

Wrought Iron and Wood

The combination of wrought iron and wood in Spanish style interiors creates a unique and inviting ambiance that is both timeless and stylish. Using wrought iron or wood materials can elevate your Spanish style home, adding warmth and character to the space. Wrought iron can be used for decorative features such as railings, chandeliers, and light fixtures. It adds an industrial touch and creates visual interest. 

Wooden beams are another common feature in Spanish style interiors. Originally, these beams served a structural purpose, supporting the heavy roofs. Today, they are primarily used for decorative purposes and can be eye-catching focal points in larger spaces. Other decorative features, such as carved wooden doors and furniture, can also be found in Spanish style interiors. 

Spanish Style backyard pool


Patios and gardens are another signature feature of Spanish style design. These outdoor spaces are an extension of your interior living areas. The patios and gardens in this style creates a private, tranquil area for you to connect with nature.

These spaces often feature tiled or paved floors, lush greenery, and a central focal point such as a fountain or a seating area. Patios provide an intimate space for you to host guests or simply enjoy the California weather.


Spanish style gardens are open-air spaces that surround the home and may include features such as pathways, flower beds, and seating areas. They are designed to enhance the overall aesthetic of the property and provide opportunities for outdoor activities and relaxation.

The importance of greenery in Spanish Colonial Revival design cannot be overstated. Your outdoor spaces need a touch of beauty and natural elements to create the sense of tranquility you need in your home.

Spanish Style table

Incorporating Spanish Style in Modern Homes

Incorporating the Spanish Colonial Revival style in modern homes creates a unique and timeless aesthetic. By carefully selecting colors and textures, adding decorative elements, and choosing appropriate furniture and accessories, it is possible to achieve a modern interpretation of this classic design style.

Choosing the Right Colors and Textures

The goal of adding your own favorite colors to your Spanish-style home is to create a balance between modernism and a space that reflects the warmth and elegance of the original style.

  • Colors: Opt for warm, earthy tones such as terracotta, ochre, and deep blues to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. These colors can be used on walls, furniture, and accessories to add depth and richness to the space.
  • Textures: Incorporate textured elements such as stucco finishes, exposed wooden beams, and hand-painted tiles to add visual interest and authenticity to the space. The combination of smooth and rough textures creates a dynamic and visually appealing environment.
  • White walls: While warm colors are often associated with the Spanish Colonial Revival style, white walls are a staple of this design aesthetic. White stucco walls reflect light and create a bright and airy atmosphere, allowing other design elements to take center stage.

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Decorative Elements to Enhance Authenticity

To enhance the authenticity of Spanish Colonial Revival interiors, incorporating decorative elements is key. These elements add character and charm, creating a space that feels true to the style’s roots.

  • Tile work: Hand-painted ceramic tiles are a hallmark of the Spanish Colonial Revival style. Incorporate them in backsplashes, flooring, or as decorative accents to add a pop of color and visual interest to the space.
  • Traditional elements: Look for furniture and accessories that embody the traditional Spanish Colonial Revival style. Think wrought iron chandeliers, carved wooden furniture, and textiles with bold patterns and vibrant colors.
  • Architectural details: Pay attention to architectural details such as arched doorways, exposed wooden beams, and decorative moldings. These elements contribute to the overall authenticity and charm of the space.
  • Accessories: Select accessories that reflect the heritage and charm of the style. Look for handcrafted pottery, vibrant textiles, and artwork that showcase the culture and history of the Spanish colonies.

By paying attention to lighting and accessories, homeowners can create a warm and inviting ambiance that captures the essence of the Spanish Colonial Revival style.

Spanish style tiles

Furniture for Spanish Colonial Revival Design

Choosing the right furniture is crucial when designing a Spanish Colonial Revival interior. Traditional pieces that embody the style’s heritage and craftsmanship are key, while modern interpretations of classic designs can also be incorporated for a fresh and updated look.

Traditional Pieces that Define the Style

Traditional furniture pieces are essential in creating an authentic Spanish Colonial Revival interior. These pieces embody the craftsmanship and heritage of the style, adding a touch of elegance and sophistication to the space.

  • Carved wooden furniture: Look for pieces with intricate carvings and rich wood tones. Spanish Colonial Revival style often features heavy and ornate wooden furniture, such as dining tables, chairs, and cabinets.
  • Leather upholstery: Leather upholstery is a classic choice for Spanish Colonial Revival furniture. Opt for rich, earthy tones like brown or deep red to complement the warm color palette of the style.
  • Cantera stone accents: Cantera stone is a type of volcanic rock that is commonly used in Spanish Colonial Revival design. Incorporate cantera stone accents in furniture pieces, such as coffee tables or side tables, to add a touch of authenticity.

By incorporating traditional furniture pieces, you can create a Spanish Colonial Revival interior that is true to the style’s heritage and exudes timeless elegance.

Spanish Style flowers

Exterior Enhancements

Enhancing the exterior of a Spanish Colonial Revival home is just as important as designing the interior. By paying attention to landscaping ideas, architectural details, and curb appeal, you can create a cohesive and visually appealing exterior that complements your style.

Landscaping Ideas to Complement Your Home

Landscaping plays a vital role in enhancing the exterior of a Spanish Colonial Revival home. By incorporating elements that complement the style’s aesthetic, you can create a visually appealing and cohesive outdoor space.

  • Drought-tolerant plants: Choose plants that are native to the region and require minimal watering. Succulents, cacti, and Mediterranean herbs are excellent choices for a Spanish Colonial Revival garden.
  • Paved walkways: Use paved walkways with materials like terra-cotta tiles or gravel to add texture and create a sense of continuity between the outdoor space and the architecture of the home.
  • Courtyard design: If your property allows for it, create a central courtyard that reflects the style’s emphasis on outdoor living. Include features like a fountain, seating area, and lush greenery to enhance the overall ambiance.

Spanish Style empty table

Ready for a Spanish Style Revival?

Today, the enduring appeal and historical connection of the Spanish Colonial Revival style continue to captivate homeowners and designers across California, preserving its cherished status as a beloved architectural tradition in the state. Embracing the Spanish Colonial Revival style is a journey that allows you to create a unique and inviting atmosphere in your home.

 Finding a contractor is one of the most stressful parts of a home remodel, even with these handy design tips! Nearly half of homeowners are dissatisfied with the contractor they choose. We offer a comprehensive and free service to help you find reliable, pre-screened, reputable contractors.


GreatBuildz is a free service that helps homeowners in Los Angeles, Ventura, and Orange Counties find a great contractor. We’ve even vetted them ourselves through a very rigorous process!  To make your home a Spanish-style haven, call us at 818.317.3567 to get realistic, local price estimates for your home remodeling project. Create the space you want with the right people for the job today!

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