Transformations are nothing new to Victor and Peggy Atalla, but their latest makeover puts them in a whole new category.
Owners of the Atalla Plastic Surgery business on Ashley Street in Hartland, the Atallas have been doing a nip-and-tuck on that business’ former headquarters at 816 Chestnut St. and have now launched it as a bed-and-breakfast enterprise.
Called Eight16 House, the new business caters to customers looking to rent the entire five-bedroom house for overnight stays and is also available for private parties and photo shoots.
Morphing the historic building into a new use is nothing new for the Atallas, who bought it in 2000 when it was being used as housing for Western Kentucky University students.
They renovated the home that dates back to the late 19th century, earning a Landmark Association Award for historic preservation in 2001, and kept the two-story, 3,700-square-foot building as a plastic surgery business for nearly 18 years.
“We had grown out of that space from a square footage standpoint,” Peggy Atalla said.
Once they moved the business into the 5,000-square-foot offices in Hartland, the Atallas considered selling the Chestnut Street building until Peggy Atalla discovered she was “too attached” to the building to let it go.
With the help of Kyle Cochran of Bowling Green’s Rustic Nail design-and-build company, Peggy Atalla did an extreme makeover and created a short-term rental property that can sleep 12 in its five bedrooms.
“I called Kyle with this project and gave him a lot of freedom,” Peggy Atalla said. “It wasn’t as hard as the original renovation, but it was almost a yearlong project.”
From the bison head in the lounge area to the geometric patterns created for the headboards in the bedrooms, Cochran created a unique space that is only now starting to bring in guests.
Although Peggy Atalla said she hasn’t started advertising the property through Airbnb or any other short-term rental site, she is starting to get some interest through social media and the eight16house.com website.
“Our first weekend was the Corvette homecoming,” she said. “Since then we’ve had several wedding parties and other events, and we have some Christmas parties coming up.”
Peggy Atalla said she hasn’t decided if she is going to list the venue on the Airbnb website and try to rent individual rooms.
“We want to rent it as one space for now,” she said. “That’s how we intend to do it. We just hope people understand how special it is and enjoy it.”