Once Home To A Croatian Countess, A Bay Area Reno Maintains International Flair {Once Home To A Croatian Countess, A Bay Area Reno Maintains International Flair} – English

Once Home To A Croatian Countess, A Bay Area Reno Maintains International Flair {Once Home To A Croatian Countess, A Bay Area Reno Maintains International Flair} – English

The post Once Home To A Croatian Countess, A Bay Area Reno Maintains International Flair appeared first on Luxe Interiors + Design.


The couple hired architect Joo Young Oh to orchestrate a whole-house renovation that would extend it by eight feet in the back to make way for a lower-level media room, a great room adjacent to an enlarged kitchen, more bedroom space upstairs and a roof deck on top. The prevailing imperative at every step was to preserve the original details making the house distinctive–vibrant, locally crafted tile; hand-forged stair rails; decorative plasterwork and trim and whimsically painted ceiling beams. “We didn’t touch any of those,” says Oh, noting general contractor Jay Blumenfeld’s team carefully removed the dining room beams to protect them during construction.

Oh enhanced the connection between new and old spaces with fresh millwork and trim that nods to the originals. “It’s in the same language as the architecture, but we reinterpreted it to be a little bit more modern,” she says. And as she contemplated a stair to the new roof terrace, Oh commissioned an artisan to replicate the existing rails. “The metalwork was beautifully done and flawlessly executed,” she says.

Kim had the walls painted white inside and out to ensure every detail stands out to the best effect. Previously, the walls were colored with a Tuscan yellow-beige hue, she says, “but it wasn’t what the house was telling me it really wanted and it didn’t fit in with its history.” The designer then tapped into her family’s wanderlust as inspiration for the rest of the interior design. When asked about the project’s genesis, she is quick to respond with: “Vacations inspired this home.” It’s a fitting concept since the boats in the marina across the street resemble a Mediterranean setting, one of the family’s favorite destinations.

The upstairs living area could, in fact, be easily mistaken for a luxury lounge in a well-appointed hotel. Her first purchase for the house–a Turkish light fixture dripping with colored globes–hangs among the painted ceiling beams and strikes an exotic note. Oh designed a passageway connecting the space to an adjacent bar area, where Kim installed vintage ice-cream parlor stools that she reupholstered with red leather and fringe to approximate the ones in Rick’s Cafe from the movie Casablanca. An existing covered balcony got an upgrade with steel-framed doors and windows to open up the views of the San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge. “This room was the inspiration for the whole house,” Kim explains.

The designer chose a vintage Moroccan pendant to hang over the dining-room table, and its filigreed metalwork casts a panoply of shadows and light that can be seen from the street at night, just as the Turkish light’s colored globes glow outward from the second floor. “I have them on when we leave at night because I like to see them when we return,” Kim says. She carried that mystique to the roof deck, which was inspired by top-floor lounges in Marrakesh outfitted with long benches and colorful cushions to accommodate a crowd. Landscape architect Peter Ker Walker designed planters full of colorful succulents to line the back of the built-in seating along one side of the deck. “The plants are low, wind resistant, require little maintenance and don’t restrict the rooftop views,” he says.

For more formal gatherings, Kim revitalized the living room’s original elegance, adding dark hardwood floors and furnishing it with refined midcentury modern Italian pieces. An existing dry bar was reborn as a Champagne bar. The whole look, she says, brings her back to an Italian seaside hotel, the J.K. Place Capri. “That place just really stuck with me,” she explains.

Looking around, the family is reminded of similar unforgettable destinations and romantic locales they’ve visited. “I’ve been captivated by hotel design in far-flung locations–places where they’ve been willing to take risks to evoke a distinct feeling of place,” Kim says. But for this traveling-loving family, coming home isn’t the end of the adventure.

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In Connecticut, Classic Forms Merge With Modern Touches {In Connecticut, Classic Forms Merge With Modern Touches} – English

In Connecticut, Classic Forms Merge With Modern Touches {In Connecticut, Classic Forms Merge With Modern Touches} – English

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The couple saw Kleinberg and his associate, Lance Scott, as the perfect pairing with local architects John Gassett and Jerry Hupy (who, ironically, the couple first discovered when vacationing down south). “We knew we wanted a team that included an interior designer who would select furnishings with the architecture in mind,” explains the wife, “as well as surround us with artwork and other pieces we’ve accumulated over decades.”

It was also important to the homeowners that the architecture remained consistent with the local vernacular, and Gassett and Hupy determined that a gambrel home best fulfilled this request. “You find gambrels throughout the Connecticut shore, and unlike the inherent grandeur of a Georgian, this style has a casual elegance that was perfect for them,” says Gassett. With its western red cedar shingles and painted iron-gray trim, the residence, which was constructed by general contractor Brian Macdonald and his team, is sited to have a welcoming street presence.

The friendly feeling flows inside. “One of the things that informed the interiors was their collection of art, items and ephemera,” says Hupy of the homeowners. He and Gassett articulated niches and shelving to highlight the clients’ photography and collections, and then Kleinberg and Scott introduced custom-scale furnishings as complements. On one side of the living room, for example, a woven cotton sofa and an Andrew Moore photo share a niche, while on the opposite end in another alcove, a Tina Barney image and a Christophe Côme console are just steps from a table with turned legs. Such genre blending strikes at the core of Kleinberg’s “traditional now” philosophy, which emphasizes a classic approach while reflecting the current time.

“In the 1980s I might have used chintz, but now I use a textural pattern instead,” says Kleinberg, pointing to the raised diamond pattern on the room’s armchairs and the nubby texture on the rug. Mixed metals–nickel-and-brass floor lamps in the living room, and stainless steel on the kitchen stove hood–add another layer of interest, and in the master bedroom, woven-silk walls enveloping a parchment-covered bed and a suede ottoman further illustrate his point. “You don’t have to have seven colors in a room to keep it from feeling bland,” he points out. “Texture is color.”

There was discussion at the start of the project over whether to have a separate formal dining room. That debate ended with a single, contemporary-leaning open space and two tables that expand to seat 24 as needed. Thanks to a thoughtful molding package, the generously scaled room retains a sense of intimacy. “Trimwork dramatically changes the proportion of a room,” says Hupy. “This room is sized to accommodate more than 20 people, but the detailing makes it also feel perfect for two people reading books.” Further upping the ante is the family room, where caned-back sofas, a vintage Italian light fixture and a stained concrete table harmoniously coexist. As Scott explains, “Whenever possible we took the traditional layout up a notch by including artisans who are working in the now.”

In keeping with the architecture, landscape architect Wesley Stout and project designer Elisa Miret-Pollino opted for a traditional landscaping approach in the front of the house that included a retaining wall fashioned from granite, and an expanse of lawn softened with ornamental grasses. “Conceptually we tend to keep the front of a house green and simple, and place color in the back where you can sit and enjoy it,” says Stout. The end result is a home that welcomes clean-lined modern interjections while still respecting the surroundings. “The older we get, the younger we want to appear, and I think that holds true for how we live as well,” says Kleinberg. “And just like us, our rooms should age gracefully.”

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Inside A Southern Charmer That Balances Masculine Forms With Feminine Touches {Inside A Southern Charmer That Balances Masculine Forms With Feminine Touches} – English

Inside A Southern Charmer That Balances Masculine Forms With Feminine Touches {Inside A Southern Charmer That Balances Masculine Forms With Feminine Touches} – English

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Such was the case for the transformation of a 1925 Tuscan villa in Buckhead, Georgia, Rollins having already bonded with its owner over a mutual love of art. It was only after being welcomed into Rollins’ own Tuxedo Park abode one afternoon for a glass of Champagne that their friendship blossomed into a full-fledged designer-client relationship. “He stood in my entrance hall with his jaw on the floor,” Rollins recalls of that fateful first visit. “In my home, there are layers and layers of texture and color, and every room tells a story of what the next room is going to be.” While the designer admits her talent for a fluid procession of colors and patterns, she thinks it was the conversation-sparking arrangements of art and furniture that won over her client’s confidence in the end. “He felt at home here, and he knew I could replicate that feeling for him,” she explains.

Having not been renovated since the 1990s, the homeowner’s own stucco- and clay tile-clad residence was in dire need of an update. To tone down its dated, ornate interiors, Rollins ousted the heavy textiles and faux-finished walls in favor of a soft, neutral scheme. The result is a lighter, airier take on Italianate that Rollins says “channels David Adler, Frances Elkins and old-school Montecito”—but still feels right at home in the heart of Buckhead.

Recently retired from his law practice and a newly single father, the client naturally gravitated toward strong, masculine furniture silhouettes. At the same time, though, top of mind was ensuring his two teenage daughters would feel equally at home. So, Rollins split the difference between the two styles, balancing masculine forms with feminine touches.

In the master bedroom, where the homeowner originally wanted a sleigh bed, Rollins instead placed a four-poster. “It would have blocked the views,” she says, noting how its clean lines are tempered by softly skirted tables at the bedside. “A lot of guys are afraid of skirted furniture because they think it is going to look too feminine, but I’m a big believer that furniture should be a mix of skirts and legs; plus they’re done in a way that he can lift them up for extra storage.” To add a handsome touch to the home, Rollins brought in supple, saddle-colored leathers, but she was sure to contrast them with florid textiles—animal prints, ikats, florals. In his daughters’ rooms, especially, “it was about letting them have a style and a voice of their own in their personal spaces,” Rollins explains. “One picked a Sister Parish print, which just thrilled me.”

Rollins was also keen to give her client the color flow that had so captured his attention in her home. Since the newly pale, neutral walls happened to provide the perfect gallery-like setting for his extensive collection of art, Rollins started there: with a mixed-media work by Cuban artist Alejandro Aguilera at the entryway. Its vibrant azure is reiterated numerous times throughout the house, helping the eye to travel. Similarly, in the dining room, a commanding abstract by Radcliffe Bailey inserts strokes of scarlet that appear throughout the home on everything from garden stools to sculpture, while in the breakfast area an entrancing photograph by Abelardo Morell ties the interior to the outside world. “It’s a scene of a garden done in camera obscura,” Rollins explains. “I love the way windows wrap all around this space, then you have this incredible art piece that’s like looking out a window. It really is so unbelievably beautiful.”

To enhance the already established gardens—lush with English ivy, clipped Korean boxwood hedges, needle palms and climbing vines—Rollins teamed up with landscape designer Marc Galbraith to tame the European-esque courtyards, terraces and pool area with new plantings of Southern-staple flowering shrubs: hydrangea, azalea, gardenia, tea olive and Knock Out white roses, among them. To frame a momentous view of the pool, she placed a pair of Boston ferns in terra-cotta pots.

And with such an entrancing environment right out the back door, there were telltale details no self-professed Southern hostess would overlook: opportunities for outdoor living and entertaining. Rollins’ thoughtful furniture placements and color play create a comfortable flow from the living room to the terrace, the kitchen and, ultimately, the sunroom-cum-library—where the client reads the newspaper over coffee every morning.

For the avid oenophile, this room is an excellent place to enjoy wine in the evenings, as well as cocktails—especially since Rollins provided the perfect rattan bar cart for concocting them. Adds the designer of the ongoing visits with her friend, “We typically have Negronis—he makes the best.

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A Compact Miami Condo Makes a Bold Statement {A Compact Miami Condo Makes a Bold Statement} – English

A Compact Miami Condo Makes a Bold Statement {A Compact Miami Condo Makes a Bold Statement} – English

The post A Compact Miami Condo Makes a Bold Statement appeared first on Luxe Interiors + Design.


With the help of designer Maite Granda, the homeowners, an award-winning cookbook author and a retired aeronautics engineer, carefully culled a few things to display in their new digs. “Incorporating souvenirs from their travels, we picked items that were fun and colorful,” says Granda, who designed the apartment with broad brush strokes of black and white, and bold interjections reminiscent of a chic pied-a-terre.

Knowing she had to make every inch of the 900-square-foot space usable, Granda eliminated a row of upper kitchen cabinets to establish a more social flow between the adjacent dining room, and tucked a desk into one corner of the living room to serve as Allan’s home office. Even the balcony functions at a high level. As Granda explains, “There’s a comfortable swivel chair on one end just for Robyn where she can work on her computer while enjoying the ocean views.”

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