Head home from your holiday with more than a tan and mini shampoos. Steal some design inspiration from these top 10 hotels.
What if you didn’t have to get away to, well, get away? If your own master bedroom was so expertly designed—so luxe, so stylish—that you lost all desire to fly off to Barbados or Buenos Aires? Steal ideas from these top 10 hotels noted for their divine décor and re-create the look in your own boudoir. Now, if only you could request room service from your kitchen.
1. Give it some glamour
à la the Viceroy hotel in Santa Monica, California
Kelly Wearstler, a judge on Bravo’s Top Design, decked the Viceroy hotel in Kelly-green leather and silver-gray marble in thrall to the Hollywood glamour aesthetic. “I love the shape of the furniture, like the emerald-green chair,” says Chappaqua-based interior designer Cami Weinstein, relishing its outright star quality. “She throws a modern Lucite piece into the mix, which is easy to do at home.” Luxurious fabrics add texture to sleek forms. “The plush coverlet warms up the look of the bed and it prevents an uncluttered room from looking too sterile,” says Lisa McTernan of Lifestyles & Interiors by Lisa in Croton-on-Hudson, who’s also partial to the sophisticated mirrors framed in molding above the bed. “On a smaller scale, you could use a collection of mirrors—or even empty frames—for the same effect.” Get the signature Wearstler look by browsing her collections at kellywearstler.com.
2. Use jewels for glimmer and gleam
à la the Devi Garh hotel in Rajasmand, India
At the all-suite Devi Garh in Rajasmand, India, luxury reigns with sumptuous white marble interiors that showcase inlays of semiprecious stone, such as malachite, jasper, and lapis lazuli. To better flaunt the vibrant accents, “this room is simple and pared-down,” says Lisa McTernan. “The decorative painting on the back wall is something that could be replicated in gold leaf by one of our area’s talented decorative painters. It would look beautiful on the right wall.” Several clients of Randall Hill, who decorated the Trump National Golf Club’s townhomes in Briarcliff Manor, have requested walls laden with precious metal, such as a silver-foil entryway. “It’s that opulent, regal splendor that’s so in vogue right now,” says the owner of Randall Scott Interiors in New York City.
3. Go for updated baroque
à la the Gramercy Park Hotel in New York City
When deep jewel tones meet silk and velvet, you’ve just crossed a threshold into five-star luxury. Ian Schrager’s Gramercy Park Hotel envelops guests in rooms heavily saturated with color. Hand-tufted area rugs and tassels speak to a to-the-manor-born pedigree. “Baroque is back,” says Randall Hill. Despite its timeless aesthetic, the look is anything but dated. “Designer Julian Schnabel [perhaps better know as a painter, sculptor, director of films, and creator of music] took traditional elements such as elegant damask and luxurious draperies, and made them more modern, using clean lines and barn wood,” says Cami Weinstein. “He mixes his own modern paintings with traditional-style furniture.” To get the look at home, Weinstein suggests using bold swathes of color and introducing a sleek lamp, a modern rug, or abstract artwork amid more traditional estate-style furniture. “They’re safe ways to bring in touches of modernism with some older pieces,” says Weinstein.
4. Try the “new” neutrals
à la L’Auberge del Mar in La Jolla, California
Rye-based decorator Leslie Christian calls mossy green and dusty blue the “new neutrals,” versatile and soothing shades that bring serenity to your sleeping quarters. Want to view these chic colors in action? Tinseltown designer Barclay Butera—former owner of Frank Sinatra’s Twin Palms estate and Bette Davis’ beach bungalow—recently wrapped a $25 million renovation of the L’Auberge del Mar resort, in his eyes “a jewel that needed to be reborn.” With a palette of soft greens and chocolate, rooms are decked in eye-catching palm prints and rich textures, such as velvet and mohair, crowned with sumptuous leather headboards. “Neutral doesn’t have to mean boring creams or drab grays,” Christian says. “These new shades play well with our area’s natural woods: hickory, walnut, cherry, and even bamboo.”
5. Create a luxurious loo
à la The Dominican in Brussels
Why do so many guests at the Dominican in Brussels beg off the attractions of The Grand Place to head back to their rooms? In addition to the sumptuous upholstery and rich woods that define the designs of Dutch design duo FG Stijl, recent winners of the Prix Villegiature Paris for Best Interior Design, the incredible amenities of the hotel’s bath chamber make even the charm of the Manneken Pis pale in comparison. The bathroom wall shimmers with both polished and brushed ceramic tile, which is also embedded in the wood floor, a decadent-den sensibility further enhanced by the black polished granite basin with chrome taps. The vessel sink, which aesthetically complements the wall-mounted toilet, is admittedly “a nice touch,” McTernan says. The Dominican (so named in tribute to its former life as an abbey) makes it a pleasure to be cloistered.
6. Dare to Deco-rate
à la the Franklin Hotel in London
Scheduled to open in June 2009, the Franklin Hotel in London’s tony Knightsbridge (a stone’s throw from Harrods) is set in a row of townhouses dating from 1880 and overlooking a quiet garden square. Designer J2 Design brought the building up to date with a well-appointed bespoke take on the English hotel, giving it an art deco twist and creating a veritable feast for the eyes: crushed-stone walls, backlit stenciled screens, hand-tufted Couristan rugs, and fired-oak floors. Oversized furniture and shimmery walls lend a ’20s flair. “The four-poster bed is timeless, but with a modern feel,” says Leslie Christian of the luxurious bed topped with Bellora linens. “And a glass wall in the bathroom is an easy modern update to a classic look.” Simple shades are boosted by glimmering silvery whites and apple greens.
7. Embrace eco-chic elegance
à la Aguas de Ibiza Spa & Resort in Ibiza, Spain
Even the diehard partiers who flock to Spanish hotspot Ibiza need some R&R. At the island’s recently opened Aguas de Ibiza, they unwind in spa-like style, amid grasscloth wallpaper, canopy beds draped with white muslin, soothing beige and gold tones, and mother-of-pearl glass tile that casts a lavender glow inspired by seashells. The space is very uncluttered, says Lisa McTernan, who points to the unmatched pair of side tables that vary in height, preventing the room from looking too “done.” “Remember, we don’t love sets,” she says with a laugh. Built by local architect Juan de los Ríos and designed by Barcelona-based Triade Studio, the hotel is defined by designs that combine organic chic with sheer strength via bamboo doors and wardrobes covered in a woven vinyl called plynyl, a fire-resistant export from the United States. And Aguas de Ibiza lives by its green philosophy, combining environmentally sound materials with techniques to reduce energy usage by more than 35 percent in comparison to other luxury properties.
8. Join the (American) club
à la the Hotel Monaco in Denver
The richly appointed rooms of the Hotel Monaco in Denver, a Kimpton property, evoke America’s Gilded Age with striped wallpaper (in both tonal reds and burnished gold), tactile curtains, royal-blue chairs dotted with stars, and oversized framed mirrors. Designer Cheryl Rowley “drew inspiration from early Deco and French design, with warm colors and opulent detail,” says Beth Johnston, the Hotel Monaco’s director of sales and marketing. Cami Weinstein is drawn to the traditional all-American “clubby feel.” Want to try for a similar effect? Paint the back wall of a bookcase or niche in a contrasting shade to bring in color and visual interest without overwhelming the room. “Decorative pillows in interesting colors and fabrics are another easy way to enliven your space,” she says.
9. Make it minimalism—with a twist
à la the Townhouse Hotel in Miami
The philosophy of South Beach’s Townhouse Hotel—the preferred lodging of Charlize Theron, Chloë Sevigny, and Matt Damon? Minimal furniture for maximum leisure. Owner Jonathan Morr envisioned his hotel as a cool, fun, fresh retreat, and he outfitted the guest rooms with spare furnishings and a mostly white palette, with pops of color—mostly fire-engine red—thrown in to entertain the eye. Crisp white linens and oversized baby-blue pillows offset bold scarlet rugs, cherry-red telephones, and cardinal-red flowered lampshades. “The look is hip and youthful,” Cami Weinstein says. “The clean lines and subdued hues really let the accents pop.” When you keep décor understated, the interior designer says, you can freely indulge your whimsical side with one or two flights of fancy, such as accent rugs with a bold print or, yes, even a beach ball-cum-pillow on the bed.
10. Steal Spanish style
à la the Colony Palms Hotel in Palm Springs, California
At the Colony Palms Hotel in Palm Springs, Martyn Lawrence-Bullard (one of the world’s top 100 designers, according to Architectural Digest) found inspiration in Spanish Colonial architecture, using it as a springboard for a design that feels at once imported and modern. A touch of the exotic, Lawrence-Bullard says, is “a vital element; it makes your home a place to escape.” For the Palms Hotel, he ordered cotton and silk suzani fabrics featuring tribal patterns from the Ottoman Empire and mounted them on the wall via upholstered headboards. He echoed the look in the bathroom with a rug pattern of mosaic tiles. Employing an inexpensive trick to add bold color without overpowering a room, he created a border of colored wainscoting in spicy shades such as terracotta red, fresh mint green, and burnt sienna. And, in a nod to Spanish revival, he commissioned side tables designed in the Portuguese style, marked with an intricately detailed leg that tapers to a spindle. If you’re looking to infuse some foreign flair in your lair, Weinstein suggests Ikat fabrics, an older fabric design that’s gaining popularity due to newer, colorful looks. “Those Portuguese tables can be brought into any room, even the bathroom,” she says. Buy Bullard’s own fabrics from the Hollywood At Home website and Martyn Lawrence Bullard Design (martyn lawrencebullard.com).