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Ronald McDonald House Makeover

October completion date in sight

Screw guns and table saws have been buzzing at all hours of the day at the Ronald McDonald House in New Hyde Park, working to complete $2.5 million in renovations before its Oct. 10 gala event, which will showcase the updated facility.

Dubbed “Project Design 2013,” 18 of the 42 bedrooms in the 27-year-old building have been stripped and renovated at no cost to the foundation.


To alleviate some of the stress during a child’s illness, the Ronald McDonald House serves more than 1,000 families each year. The house was expanded in 2005 and the 24 rooms that haven’t been renovated have been housing current residents during construction. Any incoming families would be sent to an interim hotel, with the bill footed by the foundation and local sponsors.


“We’re beyond excited about this partnership,” said RMH-LI Executive Director Matthew Campo. “The first phase of this project will focus on updating the original 18 bedrooms of the house for our resident families, pre-expansion to our current 42-bedroom facility.”


The project was kickstarted after foundation reps were planning to get new chairs in its “great room” where families congregate after long days at hospitals. The house reached out to Kravet Inc., a fabric selection, patterns and texture design company, for help. Kravet recruited the top 26 interior designers, including celebrity makeover expert Steven Fanuka of HGTV’s Million Dollar Contractor, to facilitate the revamp.


“The goal is to provide each family in need of supportive housing all the comforts of home—plus a local support network—so they can fully focus on the healing of their child, in addition to raising much needed funds to support ongoing operations at RMH-LI,” said Kravet President Cary Kravet.


Phase two of the project, set to commence in 2014, would see the remaining 24 bedrooms and seven other kitchens redesigned, according to Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator Deepika Thadhani.


“Hopefully this plan takes off nationally and this can be implemented in other states and around the world,” she said. The foundation has 329 homes worldwide, with 170 in the United States.”


Thadhani said all of the common areas, kitchen, breakfast room, first floor restrooms and three laundry rooms will also be redone, plus the house library will be turned into a multimedia room. 


“There’s a ton of construction going on right now,” she said. “It’s really exciting.”


The Oct. 10 gala event will take place from 6 to 10 p.m., with open houses occurring Oct. 11-12 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.


“All of the redesigned rooms will be open for tours,” Thadhani said. “It’s really unique.”