About Our Firm

Our co-founders, Anthony “Ankie” Barnes and Stephen Vanze, established Barnes Vanze Architects in 1989. In 2018, the leadership expanded to include four new principals: Wayne Adams; Melanie Giordano; Ellen Hatton and Michael Patrick.

Together, they oversee a 21-member architecture and interior-design studio located in Georgetown, and this is the architecture that inspires us every day:georgetown-samkittnerimage





Our architects and designers have a laser-like focus on clients’ needs—from the first sketches to the final walk-through—whether it’s a home, retail or office environment, university building, or church.

We’ve brought old city dwellings back to their original splendor; used classical architecture to imbue new homes with rich historical references; and transformed builder-grade “Colonials” into the real thing. Each time, the style and layout responds directly to a client’s aesthetic needs and daily routines.

We take the same careful approach to commercial and institutional work, which includes complete rehabilitation and additions to historic commercial properties; new university buildings that respond to their historic surroundings; and modern facilities for an expanding secondary school. “They are beautiful buildings, constructed with the quality of a home,” Barnes says.

For that reason, our work has earned dozens of awards, including the John Russell Pope award from the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art; Traditional Building’s Palladio awards and the DC Chapter of the American Institute of Architects’ Awards for Excellence. We’ve been featured in more than 100 magazine articles, online publications and books, and are consistently published on lists of the best architects and designers in the Washington region.

Steve Vanze and Ankie Barnes have both earned the prestigious “Fellow” ranking within the American Institute of Architects; they and BVA’s principals are grooming the next generation of great architectural talents with each new commission.