Sparkman-Hillcrest Funeral Home may be more than 100 years old, but that kind of longevity doesn’t come without making some updates.
That’s why the operation is going through a seven-phase remodel, which will include a completely renovated chapel and construction of a new columbarium.
“We’re really excited about it,” president and general manager Daniel Salter said. “It’s one of a kind for the state of Texas. There are others throughout the country, but very few. It’s very unique, and we feel that our clientele is going to be very receptive to it.”
The indoor columbarium, which will encompass about 2,000 square feet, will include glass-front niches where family members can personalize the space for their loved ones.
Though the facility has niches throughout right now, a columbarium of this scope will allow Sparkman-Hillcrest to accommodate more families on a grander scale.
“We advocate cremation and cremated remains having a final resting place, and not going to a family’s home,” manager Mark Patterson said.
The groundbreaking for the columbarium will take place in the fall. But before that, the chapel will undergo significant renovation in July.
“With this renovation, we’re really brightening things up,” Salter said.
In remodeling, the facility operators hope to echo the taste of their clients.
“The families we serve use high-end decorators, so we’re trying to complement what they have and meet their expectations,” Patterson said.
The facility was last renovated in 2005 and 2006. Overall, the grounds are in the third stage of renovation. The massive project began early February with interior updates.
“We decided to give the entire building a facelift,” Salter said.
Interior designer Suzanne Willis said she’s planning a sophisticated look for the remodel, including color schemes of taupe, black, and cream. She’s also incorporating some contemporary artwork for the interior portions. New carpeting and furniture will cap off the last stage of updates.
“Our families have been very understanding and very gracious,” Salter said of client interaction during the renovations.
Today, a fifth-generation Sparkman still works with the company. Though its current location on Northwest Highway is well known now, it was once housed in the Belo Mansion downtown.
The funeral home is planning an open house in the fall pending further construction progress.