The construction market craze in Chicago these days is the rehab of turn-of-the century buildings once used as factories, meat packing plants, or manufacturing facilities into highly sought-after loft apartments, office & retail space. Villa Capital Partners, LLC is a shining example of this process and vision with its rehab of a 1903 building in Chicago’s Pilsen Neighborhood. Pilsen was named’s Top Ten List of World’s Coolest Neighborhoods with its thriving street art community and gallery scene ( This “up & coming” neighborhood was a perfect location for much needed office and retail space.

From the start, John Pagone, principal at Villa Capital, was intrigued by the look polished concrete offered as a way to visually tie together his space of old and new with its timber & beam construction, original exposed brick walls, large black framed picture windows, exposed ceilings, and rustic-chic light fixtures. The challenge of this project was to keep the historic charm of the space that had once been home to a chemical factory, hardware store, and paint manufacturer, while making it enticing to the artists and millennials that are drawn to this area.

After researching installed and lifetime maintenance costs of other flooring types, such as wood or tile, Pagone was sold on RetroPlate Polished Concrete. As he explained, “The resiliency and cost of polished concrete made all the sense in the world”.

Pagone connected with long-time RetroPlate applicator Vince Schrementi of Bedrock Concrete Arts to collaborate on this project. The unique concrete features in the interior of Schrementi’s home have been featured by media outlets over the years. This, coupled with his reputation of expert workmanship, has solidified his name as a decorative concrete guru in the Chicago area. Schrementi worked closely with Pagone and the concrete mix company, Ozinga, to perfect a mix design for the 2-inch pour on which Schrementi later performed a RetroPlate diamond grind and polish to achieve a salt and pepper aggregate finish throughout this 44,000 sq. ft. building.