And this is due to my luck for having been born into a wonderful worldly family where I traveled extensively from a very young age, studied design and from the rich experience in the fine and decorative arts formed during a decade-long career at Christie’s. The result of these experiences gives me a level of unparalleled connoisseurship and access to art that translates into a distinct aesthetic to my modern rooms that feel comfortable, relaxed, rich and sophisticated without being too precious.
Featured today is a full nyc penthouse renovation project for an art collecting couple in Manhattan with sweeping vistas of the Hudson River and city skyline. Because of their dissimilar tastes, the clients wanted an “eclectic” and beautiful space they could both call home. So they offered me the opportunity, a strict but realistic budget, 4 months … and we got to work!
We stained the original and wickedly beautiful chevron pattern oak floors with a proprietary dark color to turn on the hidden sophistication of the space. The walls and ceilings were skim-coated and painted in Benjamin Moore hues of gray to get rid of the dreadful hospital white walls, to add coziness and to better showcase the art. A simple crown molding and wider baseboards were added to “finish” and modernize the rooms of the NYC penthouse.
I added a set of close woven sisal rugs in a natural color with minimalist borders to warm up the rooms, add texture and to better highlight the space without leaving it totally uncovered (as the client had originally envisioned). I saw a great potential in the nyc penthouse space to create a gallery for some of their collection of contemporary photography.
The inside of the front door and all door frames were stripped to the raw metal, treated and left as part of the décor to give this uptown space a downtown edge. All inside doors were replaced and lacquered in black, allowing the awesome period bakelite knobs, stripped metal door frames and marvelous nickel hinges to showcase as a cohesive group.
The bathroom was completely gutted, though keeping its existing footprint, and given a modern look and relevant practicality by introducing a glass enclosure, honed granite, rain shower and fixtures by Waterworks, Hansgrohe, Duravit and TOTO. A glass enclosure allows light to flood the space and makes the room feel more spacious.
The small bedroom in the nyc penthouse was repurposed as a home office/library with a wrap-around custom bookcase and file cabinets in solid walnut to give the clients what they need: a serene, practical and inspiring space to read and work. The same type of sisal carpets were placed throughout the home to unite the spaces.
image credits: nyc penthouse : all “before” photos by Richard Rabel for TheModernSybarite. All “after” photos © Joshua McHugh, New York
Note: to see a selection of detail shots of these rooms and their objects, please see my related post.