ISSUE 78  |  Heading South

Architectural Detail: Spanish-Style Registers and Grilles

June 27, 2013 1:00 PM

BY Janet Hall

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On a recent visit to the historic Spanish Colonial Revival-style Biltmore Hotel in Santa Barbara, I was enchanted by so many of the architectural details. My favorite? The sculptural and subtly ornate vents, registers, and grilles covering heat and cooling ducts (my family members were embarrassed by my brazen public display of affection for the plaster registers). Curious, I wondered if such architectural details were a lost art. Enter Pacific Register Company

Plaster Registers

Above: Used in a variety of architectural styles including Mediterranean, Spanish Colonial, and Moorish Revival, plaster registers are designed to be installed flush to drywall, plaster, or stucco. Pacific Register Company offers a wide range of decorative and functional plaster registers (as well as metal, aluminum, wood, and stone registers and grilles). All of their products are made in the US. 

Above: Typically 2 inches thick, plaster registers can be customized according to need, from .5 inches to 5 inches thick and in any size. Pacific Register’s Complement of Patterns range from simple square grids, to medallions and more ornate patterns like the Wisteria pattern shown above. 

Above: A large Plaster Register from Pacific Register Company in a Gothic Clover pattern. 

Above: Small custom plaster registers based on a Biltmore Hotel register design were placed on both sides of a front door. 

Above: A Rectangular Plaster Register in a pattern based on the registers at the Spanish Colonial Revival-style Four Seasons Biltmore Hotel in Santa Barbara. 

Concrete Window Grills

Above: With a similar look to plaster registers, but made to withstand outdoor elements, Concrete Window Grilles are often used in solid balcony sides of concrete or stucco homes. They are available fully framed for applications where water run-off is not an issue, and in a three-sided frame or frameless where water drainage is needed. 

Above: Available through Pacific Register Company in any size and pattern, Glass Reinforced Concrete Window Grilles are installed flush with the house siding.  

Above: Window grilles are often admired, not just for their own design, but also for the shadows they cast inside. Here is a view from the interior. 

Another detail to consider: Spanish-Style Tiled Stair Risers.