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Press Release

Des Moines Remodeling Company Honored with National Design Award

About Zenith Design + Build

Zenith Design + Build was founded in 2018 by owner Nicholas Donlin to provide homeowners with a new, better approach to remodeling and custom home building. Since its founding, Zenith has helped homeowners across the Des Moines metropolitan area with their custom home projects while providing the best designs and customer experience. The Zenith team has grown to a full team of designers, project managers, construction crews, and more ready to tackle home remodeling projects in the Des Moines area.

For more information on Zenith Design + Build and their services, visit


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Des Moines

Zenith Design + Build has won a gold award for the remodeling category in the
2020 Best in American Living™Awards (BALA) by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

The Best in American Living Awards are sponsored by Monogram Luxury Appliances.

This mid-century modern home on the South Side of Des Moines was designed by Nicholas Donlin, owner of Zenith Design + Build, and Unfold Architecture.

It was built by Zenith Design + Build. The interiors were designed by Aurora Design Group.

The 1,750 square-foot single-family custom home features three bedrooms and two bathrooms. From the structural bones to the finishing aesthetics, this mid-century home was transformed to just enough modern, without forgetting its roots. The biggest change was moving the staircase from the center of the home to near the front wall under the windows, allowing light to flow down to the basement. The original brick wall that extends from the exterior to the interior was restored and revealed, providing a focal point for the entrance. In the back of the home, the design team added a modern, outdoor entertainment area with a three-panel sliding door and a projector and screen on the modern deck. The original redwood cedar siding was restored and reused, along with the unique tongue and groove wood ceiling.

“This year’s BALA winners continue on the rich tradition of exceptional residential home design,” said David O’Sullivan, principal of O’Sullivan Architects in Reading, Mass., NAHB’s 2020 Judging Chair and 2020 Best in American Living Awards Subcommittee Chair. “These winners are truly forward-thinking and some of the most talented professionals in their fields.”

“We are honored to have our remodeling project recognized by the National Association of Home Builders,” said Nicholas Donlin, owner and founder of Zenith Design + Build. “It is exciting to bring the incredible design and remodeling projects happening in Des Moines to the national stage, particularly the work that we are completing here at Zenith Design + Build. Thank you to the NAHB for this Best in American Living Award.”

Now in its 37th year, BALA recognizes outstanding achievement by builders and design professionals in all sectors of the residential housing industry including single-family production, custom, multifamily, affordable, remodeling, community and interiors. BALA is built on the principle that all great homes start with great design, no matter cost or size.

Award winners were formally announced during an online ceremony on Feb. 25, 2021.

Additional information about the BALA program can be found at