The Americas: Top Architects and Designers (2019)

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First published in 2019 by BB PUBLICATIONS Š B.B. Publications 2019 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise) without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the publisher of this book. ISBN 978-1-905904-76-1 Designed by


The Americas: TOP ARCHITECTS and DESIGNERS We have dedicated this annual edition on cutting edge architecture and design to The Americas. It may seem incongruous, therefore, to start with a profile of Erol Tabanca whose mega construction company Polimeks, is best known for its projects in Europe and Asia. In that Tabanca is an architect and a developer on a very large and global scale, he is relevant to the publication. Even more relevant is the way he has interwoven art into each of his projects, something that all great industry visionaries aspire to. In so far as architecture and design at their best are an art form in themselves, our appreciation of each is based on individual aesthetic sensibilities. This in turn informs the different styles and approaches presented in every Beyond Black edition. As ever, we trust the reader will enjoy taking a whirlwind trip around projects across The Americas, with an introduction by their respective creators, as much as we have enjoyed crafting each profile. Order of features Profiles are never arranged in any order of importance. Rather, we try to organise them intuitively, often based on geographical and stylistic criteria, to create visual variety. We always leave some of the more interesting profiles for the end of the book in order to sustain interest, rather than have it peter out. In the building trade, this is known as topping off.










Peter Zimmerman, E-kin, 2010, tuval üzeri karışık teknik, 200 x 146cm. Photo by Ozan Çakmak



rol Tabanca needs no introduction in the rarefied world of multi-million project property developers.

He is the founder and CEO of Polimeks, a mega construction company based in Istanbul, but perhaps best known for its landmark developments in Turkmenistan and more recently, Russia. Tabanca is, however, trailblazing in the even more rarefied world of art by donating his vast collection of primarily Turkish artists’ works to a dedicated museum, opening in Eskişehir, north-western Turkey. The collection, consisting of some 1000 works, has been built over two decades and was until recently displayed in the corporate headquarters of Polimeks. An engaging man, Erol Tabanca is not your standard art collector, if indeed there were such a thing. He is knowledgeable without being pretentious; he tells you that there was no specific strategy behind building the collection. Rather, he went on as he started: collecting what he liked, following his personal sense of aesthetics, and honing his instincts over the years. Tabanca is an architect and that has informed to a great extent Polimeks’approach to all projects. The interplay between art and culture on one hand and architecture on the other is clearly visible, with each building subtly inspired by Polart and its founder’s aesthetic sensibilities.


Tabanca Collection Photographs by Ozan Çakmak


CLOCKWISE FROM BELOW: Jean Franois Rauzier, Escalier de L_Hotel de Ville, 2011, C print, 150 x 250 cm. Photo by Ozan Çakma İlhan Koman, Derviş Ahşap 1970, ahşap 100x30x30cm Joao Vilhena, Fouille Courageuse, 2015, Pierre Noire on grey cardboard, diptych,195,5 x 135 cm Photo by Kayhan Kaygusuz



In many ways, the Odunpazari Modern Museum (OMM) is the natural culmination of Tabanca’s passion for, and championing of Turkish artists and Turkish contemporary art at large. It is also a legacy project which will continue across generations (the museum’s director is his daughter, İdil Tabanca, an art graduate who shares his passion). The OMM building was designed by world-renowned architects Kengo Kuma and Associates (in recognition of this, one of its first exhibitions will host a Japanese artist, Tanabe Chikuunsai IV). The design resonates with the city of Eskişehir’s rich cultural past (Eskişehir was founded in 1000 BC and is known for its archaeological museum, among others). The wooden lattices on the outside structure reflect the name and history of the location itself, Odunpazari (wood market).

CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Ferruh Başağa, Mavi Akdeniz,1995, tuval yağlıboya, 249 x 197 cm. Photo by Ozan Çakmak Julian Opie, Caterina Nude 15 , 2009, vinil üzeri akrilik, 188 x 246 cm. Photo by Ozan Çakmak Burhan Uygur, Portre, 1989, tuval üzeri yağlıboya, 82 x 70 cm


CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: SeungMo Park, Maya, 2013, paslanmaz çelik, 285 x 90 x 47 cm. Photo by Rıdvan Bayrakoğlu Massimo Gianonni, Kütüphane, 2012,Tuval üzeri Yağlı boya, 200 x 600 cm. Photo by Ozan Çakmak

The city, one of the most beautiful in Anatolia, is Tabanca’s birthplace, of course, and his mission is to turn it into an art destination in its own right. Recently, a serendipitous and auspicious chance meeting that Tabanca and his daughter had at the Saatchi Gallery in London was with the exhibiting artist Ersinhan Ersin (part of the London based experiential studio Marshmallow Laser Feast) who was not only Turkish, but a native of Odunpazari itself. Although Tabanca remains a property developer and investor (Polimeks’ most recent projects include the first ever Ritz Carlton hotel in Moscow and several projects in the city of Kazan), one senses that he is placing ever greater emphasis on philanthropy. His next project is developing a sustainable ranch in Bodrum, where one of the programs will be to introduce underprivileged children to art. Erol Tabanca is like all philanthropists a renaissance man, in the sense that he thinks multi-dimensionally and is blessed with an inquisitive mind. He is also multilingual, which makes a conversational exchange all the more interesting for those fortunate enough to engage with him. The OMM will be opening its doors in September 2019, God willing, as is customary to say, and BBeyond Magazine, along with art lovers around the world, is looking forward to it.







penspace Architecture is a Vancouver, Canada boutique architectural and interior design practice with a focus on one-off single-family homes and resort residential projects. It is characterized by a deep respect for the relationships between people, nature, and the built environment. “Our creative studio offers an invaluable exchange of leading edge ideas and constructive critiques, spread across many areas of expertise. With such a broad range of competencies, we are able to take on a variety of infrastructure and master planning initiatives.” The firm’s work on Canada’s west coast is at the root of “everything we do, wherever in the world it might take us”.


“Our idea is to create exceptionally robust and livable homes from the highest quality materials. We use natural materials that weather and appreciate with age and that last much longer than we will. We create homes that resonate with the body, with no adjustment required when the clients move in. These are west coast ideals that have an international appeal, and we have been asked to apply them in locations around the world, including Whistler, Hawaii, Carmel, Goa and Japan, to name a few. Because of where we are situated, timber is the material we work with most extensively, and that type of construction has proved to travel very well, as have some of the core principles we developed. With the resort homes, we shape the natural spaces first and build around that. We put the building on the worst part of the site, so we can

look towards the best part of the site. The result is that nature becomes part of the living environment and the buildings frame the setting, becoming a lens piece. Our roster of international clients is mostly made up of people who have experienced this approach and ask us to adapt it to a different environment.” Open Space’s principal architect, Don Gurney, defines sustainability as follows: “Our emphasis on using natural materials, often local, is an obvious advantage. No synthetic wall panels or cladding systems that demand maintenance and are heavy on the environment. In all of our current projects, we are angling toward net zero energy use, and sometimes this requires radical approaches. For example, a community centre project in Mongolia has sheep’s wool incorporated into the insulation.

We use natural materials that weather and appreciate with age and that last much longer than we will. We create homes that resonate with the body, with no adjustment required when the clients move in. 17

Open Space Architecture have developed a unique understanding of resort homes and of how such homes function for both personal use and gatherings; how to take advantage of the site’s attributes and how to create homes that resonate with the occupants. “So much of it is about providing access to nature, both inside and outside of the home. Our process is very important: we communicate with clients via a 3D information model so that the building is very well thought-out before construction starts. The model illustrates the integration of mechanical, electrical, smart home automation and structural components, which allows for fixed scopes of work and fewer contingencies. Wood and stone are the materials that made our first homes and we continue to use them today in a more refined and elegant way. We’ve been successful in creating work that is both memorable and enduring— design that feels as though it was simply meant to be - an expression of its inhabitants, the environment and the spaces in between.” Featured Projects: Ancient Cedars Ancient Cedars Residence is a family home in the resort setting of Whistler, Ancient Cedars that epitomizes much of our approach. The clients, an energetic young family, wanted a high-functioning, low-maintenance home that would withstand the test of time while also standing out. The contrast between intimate spaces and others of grander scale is key here, as is the palette of natural materials, mostly local, and in some cases reclaimed.

There, as in some of the California resort homes we’ve designed, grid utilities are provided to the property line, but the intention is to never use them. Instead, these buildings rely on rain and atmospheric moisture for water, and solar energy for heat. We are also designing glass roofs with integrated photovoltaic systems to lessen electrical consumption. Because connecting to and with the out-of-doors is such an important part of our approach, we use new types of high-technology glazing with insulation values as high as R-20.”


On the outside, red and white cedar stand up to the elements, while inside exposed Douglas fir structural elements promote a chalet feel. There’s also lots of stone and board-formed concrete, as well as a fair bit of steel. The latter was partly in response to the homeowner’s request for low maintenance ruled out most standard approaches to stair railings—the use of glass, for example. The steel was hand-rubbed by a master craftsman who used a number of stains, oils and waxes to perfect the patina. The interior was configured to showcase the clients’ art and antiques collections giving it a level of intimacy that isn’t easy to achieve in a large home.

High Point This home is a perfect example of serendipity in action: while the client was visiting our office, he noticed a schematic for a low-slung home stretched out on stilts and decided he wanted something similar. His building site was on a steep and rocky mountainside which presented a significant challenge. Our solution was to create a flat site on the steep topography, using a massive retaining wall. Viewed from the street the home reads as a single-storey pavilion with a slightly lower bedroom wing to one side. In fact, it’s a very large home with two more storeys cascading down the hillside behind. There’s a strong sculptural aspect to it, certainly when approached from the street but also on closer scrutiny. Limestone elements are dry-stacked and hand-chiseled to rectify joints and connections. Window details are minimal, with structural silicone glazing sandwiched between veneered glulam structural members. In one spot, the plaza created by the retaining wall is notched two feet to allow a tree to remain undisturbed. With its composed demeanour and intricate detailing, we feel this is one of our most refined and elegant designs.





Forlee Every home design presents its challenges, but few rival the issues here. The client wanted a large home, commensurate with the expansive lot size. However, most of the property is taken up by a tree reserve and a ski run, leaving only a small, steep portion for the building which needed to have a vertical orientation, with an entrance into the lower, bedroom level - something the client did not want. As is often the case, solving problems creates opportunities that might not have been imagined otherwise. To get around the entry issue, we created a double-height main floor, along with an entrance foyer that connects to it by way of a bridge. An extraordinary view of mountains and valley is gradually revealed on the way from foyer to open plan main room. This is topped by a massive skylight compensating for the northern exposure. A bridge may seem a dramatic gesture, but drama is not this home’s intent. Instead, the quest is for precision and refinement. Details are minimalist and the materials palette is both restrained and coordinated. Inside and out architectural tectonics are allowed to shine through. Beyond its liveability and beautiful site, this is a home that will please into perpetuity as details reveal their reason for being.





Toronto Penthouse ↓→


oronto-based Sheree Stuart Design (“SSD”) has been creating distinctive, elegant, and highly personalized interiors for over a decade. Winner of the prestigious 2018 International Design and Architecture Award for Kitchen Design Over £50,000, and shortlisted for the 2019 City Space category of the same competition, the firm specializes in new builds, renovations and kitchen design. The firm’s emphasis on client service, custom design, and detailed project and budget management reflects Sheree’s background in business and interior design.


“Clients feel much more comfortable that I can protect their money and spend it wisely.” This combination of services has garnered SSD a loyal repeat clientele who value her business acumen as much as her interior design talents. Sheree combines more than 15 years of business strategy and finance experience with her interior design training. Her approach combines a creative design vision with project management and planning expertise, a trifecta of skills well suited to the practice of interior design. And while far off cultures infuse her work, it is primarily her clients’

lifestyle and personal narrative that inform her carefully considered designs, resulting in a portfolio of work that ranges from formal to casual and traditional to modern. Offering a full service program that includes concept creation, construction plans, lighting design, and project management, SSD is also recognized for superior custom work.​The trusted team of highly skilled trades and craftspeople that Sheree has assembled over the years is committed to quality workmanship and attention to detail. Whether designing and building furniture, upholstery or millwork the end goal is always to produce quality work that’s built to last.


Featured projects TORONTO PENTHOUSE This project best exemplifies SSD’s design philosophy and has been, at the time of writing, shortlisted in the City Space category of the 2019 International Design and Architecture Awards. Taking a cue from her clients’ love of travel and their growing collection of Asian antiquities and art, Sheree has imbued the space with the Japanese aesthetic of simplicity, modernism and an earth-toned

Kingsway Classic & Calm ↑→


palette. Every aspect of the two storey penthouse is custom - from the lighting, millwork and flooring, to the furniture and cabinet hardware. The result is a luxurious and tranquil retreat that fully satisfies the designer’s criteria for a successful project: a customized interior enhancing the clients living experience, delivered on time and on budget. “The best part of this project was working with our client who has a keen eye for design. The owners live in Toronto part-time.

They wanted their penthouse to look and feel different from their traditional style Florida bungalow home. This design was truly a collaborative effort and although there were challenges, magic did happen! New possibilities emerged and took shape, and our client is thrilled.” The unique design of this penthouse fits beautifully into the wider environment, with 360 views of downtown Toronto, the CN Tower and the lake, and blending effortlessly with the exterior patio.”

It’s always a challenge to translate clients’ wishes into a visual design that addresses all their needs, but it is the most rewarding aspect of our job. KINGSWAY CLASSIC & CALM A global award winner The brief was to create an addition to the back of the residence and design a new large kitchen for a busy client who loves to cook and entertain. “We wanted to design a space that captures her soul and were partly inspired by her beautiful china, antique silver tea kettles and crystal. We expanded the kitchen by adding to the back of the house and installed French doors leading to her exquisite garden and pool. We created a visually separate space for our client’s treasured china, along with a wet bar. Although this kitchen is large, it fits visually with the rest of the home. The overall theme for this kitchen is calm and classic, reflecting our client's design objectives. The client testimonial, “this kitchen has turned my dreams into a reality”, is the best endorsement. “It’s always a challenge to translate clients’ wishes into a visual design that addresses all their needs, but it is the most rewarding aspect of our job. In this case, we exceeded our client’s expectations with a kitchen that is “even better than they imagined.” Dream project “I love to design personal spaces that are filled with treasures from places my clients have visited. My favourite projects incorporate cultural aesthetics and uniquely crafted pieces to curate an environment that resonates with the client and takes them back to the places and influences that mean the most to them. Design can be fluid, and should change to reflect a client’s interests as they experience life. Travel can really aid in shaping design. Being out in the world and experiencing different cultures are gifts that should be celebrated and I love to design spaces that embrace our world’s diversity, culture and beauty.”






indy Stumpo, the glamour face of the building trade, is the founder of C. Stumpo Development, a privately owned custom home builder and developer based in Massachusetts. Her platinum blonde bombshell exterior belies the steel chip determination that the audience of her aptly named HGTV television series Tough As Nails is already familiar with. Both that and her weekly Cindy Stumpo iHeart radio show are hugely popular and with good reason. One of the most successful residential contractors in the USA, Cindy is a great deal more than eye candy: she has been the recipient of several Builder of the Year awards, the 2014 Inspirational Woman of the Year award and has a recession-proof resilience that has been the envy of many of her peers.



Builder of the year is not a commonplace accolade for a woman and in fact comes across as something of a contradiction in terms – until, that is, one faces the formidable Cindy Stumpo.

The above is not a reflection on how women perform, quite the opposite. Rather, it is an observation of how little attitudes have changed in spite of the political correctness gloss-over.

The world must have been much more of a “man’s world” when she started her company, some 3 decades ago.

In any event, Cindy tends to speaks primarily for herself.

“It still is”, says Stumpo, “It might have improved 30% over the last 30 years, but that’s all. A woman is still not getting the same level of respect that men do in our trade. The “old boys’ network’ is well and alive.” But, she adds, being a mom is still the harder job. Stumpo is the queen of witty analogies: “A Honda may look like Rolls Royce, but it still has a Honda engine.”


Her reputation speaks for itself too: in the three decades she has traded, there’s never been so much as a single litigation case against the company. Her staying power is a testimony to the quality and consistency of her output. This uncompromising quality and her work ethic have ensured the company’s survival through economic vicissitudes that have brought many a competitor to their knees.

Stumpo learned on the job, all the more astounding as she was just 23 when she started. It must have helped that she was drop-dead gorgeous, but what sustained the business was her strong personality, her refusal to be intimidated, and her sheer, detailfocused professionalism. “You can throw a right hook at me, but when I throw that left hook, you’d better be prepared.”, she says. What makes a builder, and a woman builder at that, successful, given this is a very competitive business? Cindy has been defying stereotypes her entire life but her views on the subject are a mixture of home-grown wisdom and traditional values.




“Never forget who you are and where you come from.” Family is what grounds her and she cites loyalty, determination, tenacity, focus, generosity of spirit and not judging people but accepting them with both their flaws and qualities.

Never forget who you are and where you come from.


Stumpo’s clients know that they can always rely on her to be there when they need her. Holding clients’ hands, making sure that their expectations are exceeded, and that their assets appreciate in value is a big part of who she is. The first ten years were hard for her, but she disregarded the white noise and persevered. Her very first development was worth $1.5m then ($5.5m by today’s standards) and was a steep learning curve. “Learn by doing.” has been her motto ever since.

“Most importantly, you look for a certain style in what you do. I build everything as well as if I were building it for myself and aim to shine on the field. I am no pen pusher and I don’t cut corners.” What sets Stumpo apart from her male competitors? Well, for starters, it is the awareness that everybody is NOT replaceable. Stumpo would tolerate a lot if she can get the high level of craftsmanship she requires for her projects. She treats her team as a family and has a rigorous work ethic. She knows the intrinsic value of her brand and would rather dominate her own territory (Massachusetts) than take on geographically diffuse or mammoth multiunit development projects.

“You lose quality control with massive projects. You’d have to delegate and if the person you delegate to is as good as you, they would be working for themselves – they wouldn’t be working for you and me. Plus, I’ve been around too long to take on clients I don’t like.” Her brand has changed subtly over time: today she is more into transitional rather than traditional type buildings. Buildings that have a timeless quality about them... She often leads a client to the correct – and logical – decision, because not everything one admires in a magazine centrefold is appropriate for every climate zone, let

alone budget expectations. Ultimately, all individual elements have to work together in order to result in the kind of home clients want to inhabit. As for dream projects, Cindy doesn’t have any for the simple reason that she has “done everything I’ve wanted to”. Cindy Stumpo works with her two grown-up children, daughter Samantha and son Chad, both of whom are her natural successors – although not just yet by a long shot. Cindy is the star of the show - active both as a builder and a public personality - and a very long way from letting go of the reins.

Not everything one admires in a magazine centrefold is appropriate for every climate zone, let alone budget expectations. 39






ina Farmer launched her eponymous design firm in 2007 after working for a number of New York City and Boston architects. She defines Nina Farmer Interiors as: “A boutique residential design firm that believes in creating highly customized homes strongly tied to the local architectural vernacular. Inspiration for our use of color, pattern and vintage furniture comes from a passion for travel, fashion and the arts.” Working with clients based in some of the most blue chip/blue-blooded enclaves of the United States, she says design is not influenced by what her clients have in common but rather, tailored to reflect their personalities. Updating historic homes provides a huge stimulus and is a primary drive for her. She says she “feels privileged to get the opportunity to update them while also maintaining the architectural features that make them unique.” Combining a “classical sensibility” with mixing “furniture and accessories from different periods”, she has evolved a look that is at once elegant and sophisticated, without a hint of dichotomy.


A look that is at once elegant and sophisticated, without a hint of dichotomy.


“I always keep “classical” architecture principles such as symmetry, balance, and proportion at the forefront of my mind when designing a home. However, I believe that a successful project needs layers of complexity added on top of this. Carefully curated furniture and accessories from different periods and countries need to be part of the equation.” She has her own range of custom furniture pieces, developed because she wasn’t able to find anything fitting her needs in local showrooms. “It’s wonderful working with a local upholsterer because not only can my client’s tailor the pieces to their needs but I can check in on

all of the details as they are being worked on.” Featured project “My most significant project to date is a 2 year renovation and addition on a house built in 1911. The owners wanted to preserve the historic nature of the house while juxtaposing it with a new contemporary addition. Most of the furniture, rugs and light fixtures were custom designed for the home. We deliberated over every detail so that the fusion of new and old struck the perfect balance.” Dream Project Having just returned from a fabulous trip to Morocco, I would say a dream project would be working on a riad in the Medina in Marrakech.




Cayzedo Plaza, Quito



ome Vision DNA was founded by international power couple Kai and Gabriela Liebert, with the firm’s offices reflecting their respective roots: Quito, Miami and Hamburg. The firm’s ethos is in the name: whatever space you inhabit, either residential or commercial, this should reflect your personality or the nature of your business. Home Vision DNA has been featured in one of our previous publications, but has evolved and grown both in stature and projects since. Says Gabriela Liebert: “Miami is the gateway to Latin America. Many of our friends and family are Latinos who left their countries to come to the United States. This has given us even more powerful connections to develop projects in the Americas. That has taught us even more about the continent. We deal with Latin American economies, demographics growth, and urban challenges on an intimate basis.

Cayzedo Plaza, Quito

Mixed Use Project 50,450 m2 (543,039 ft 2) includes hotel, residential tower, mall, offices.

Edgewater Hotel, Miami Long stay Hotel residence, 3040 m2 (32,720 ft 2)


Dilido Haus, Miami Single Family House, 337 m2 (3,626 ft 2)


Pinecrest Home, Miami Single Family House, Interiors, 512 m2 (5,511 ft 2)

One needs to understand the country’s direction and listen to what the people are asking for in homes. 50

Latinos are famous for their outgoing personalities, their optimism, their happiness, their absolute joy to be alive. They have an inspiring aura that makes working with them an absolute pleasure. We credit their deep family ties and deep faith for all of the above.

Casa para una Familia Feliz, Cumbaya Valley, Quito Single Family, 285 m2 (3,067 ft 2)

Unfortunately, not all is positive. Corruption paralyzes South America. A lack of education prevents growth. Weak national infrastructure prevents daring entrepreneurs from achieving their dreams. It takes every bit of strength in your soul to work with governments who are only interested in bribes, and do not understand the importance of short-term sacrifices for long term growth. Many privileged Latinos left their countries of origin for security reasons or just out of plain frustration. Those are a lot of problems to fix, but the good outweighs the bad. As of now, we work with the situation by building mixed use and multifamily housing. It realistically meets demand while satisfying the needs of growing

cities. It’s practical, people can afford it. It’s almost recession-proof, and deals practically with the continent’s fluctuating economies, and family based structure. How we do it? On a business level there’s research and there is gutfeel and each tells you how to match South American booms and busts to development. One needs to understand the country’s direction and listen to what the people are asking for in homes. On a day to day basis, our family bonds and undying faith keep us focused on constructing amazing homes and working past the daily struggles.” Dream Project “Latin America is gorgeously varied. If you don’t know the continent it might seem generic, but Argentina’s pampa and Medellin’s mountains could not be more different. We would love to extend our impact and build multifamily projects in cities very close to our heart: Medellin, Lima, Santiago, Buenos Aires, Panama City and Guadalajara.” Rafaga, Cumbaya Valley, Quito Multifamily Residential, 780 m2 (8,396 ft 2)

Photographers: Pascal Depuhl and Richard Novak Renderings: Morean Digital Realities




Photograph by Roger Davies



ennifer Post is the founder and inspiration behind the eponymous architecture and design firm that has defined, for more than two decades, pared-down elegance and opulent coastal residence/ resort chic. Her portfolio is varied and prolific, and geared to a sophisticate, high brow clientele, ranging from LA to Palm Beach, and from the Caribbean to the French Riviera. “My portfolio reflects my clients’ lifestyle, wherever their home may be, and compliments the environment. My work is international, with a focus on both the East and West coasts, NYC, the Caribbean and Europe.”

Photography by Antoine Bootz (above) and Ken Hayden (top)


Aesthetics between the two US coasts are different, Post says, in terms of climate, as well as mentality and color palette. “The East tends to be a bit more serious in the design process and the West Coast more playful.”

Photograph by Ken Hayden


Photograph by Peter Krasowski


Post “edits down living spaces to the most essential uncluttered luxuries”, which reflects her clients’ preferences and sensibilities, as well as her own. “My classically modern interiors have always been warm and elegant in execution.” Post is equally comfortable designing a home or a yacht although the latter presents more challenges, she says. “Once the design vision is defined, the execution is highly detailed and coordinated in tandem with a number of tradesmen, as well as the yacht builder.” Her most significant projects are those linked to a ‘dream client’ who allows her creative licence. “The level of freedom to create… NYC, LA, and the Caribbean have all been very good to me.”

Photography by Antoine Bootz (above), Peter Krasowski (top) and Michael Moran (top right)

We just finished a once in a lifetime project in the Caribbean and we welcome more projects there. We get to create real private resorts for our clients.”






ohn Rusk comes from a long line of mechanics and innovators; his family were plumbers and hardware merchants but the real driving force in his background is a distant relative. John Ruskin is the 19th century English visionary who wrote: “When we build, let us think that we build forever. Let it not be for present delight, nor for present use alone.” To build projects that endure, Rusk listens. Clients know their project better than anyone - it is, after all, their dream. He and his team have a process for extracting crucial information by asking clients the right questions and listening to the answers about lifestyle, taste and preferences in order to meet their needs. This process was first developed at the Harvard Program on Negotiation where Rusk studied and wrote his primer for owners, “On Time and On Budget.” He continues his academic research through the course he has taught at Columbia University for the last decade.



Clients know their project better than anyone it is, after all, their dream. 62

Rusk is devoted to supporting the design team, whether they are in New York City or anywhere in the world. While the designer’s artistic vision will guide the project, Rusk provides the craft and resources to build in New York. Rusk’s in-house education, standards and long-term service team are second to none. His featured projects demonstrate their approach. The first is a dramatic, art filled home, built for clients who were building in New York for the first time. Rusk paired the client’s favoured interior designer, the gifted Jeffrey Hitchcock, with New York architect Ann Macklin. Built on a tight schedule of five months, the project had ebonized floors, Venetian, upholstered and suede walls, as well as a granite with nickel inlay gallery. The ceiling of the powder room was a ziggurat of faceted mirror while the master bath was onyx and gold leaf. The second project is a contemporary townhouse conceived by Haute Architecture. The center piece is a sculptural staircase modelled on a human vertebrae. The master bath counter is carved from a solid block of stone weighing in excess of a tonne and the entire cabinetry volume is clad in the veneer of a single English white oak.

There are no shortcuts, says Rusk. He has been building and refining this process for the last 32 years along with his partner Mary Kocy, herself a fourth-generation builder. These projects were checked against 709 checklist items regarding every aspect of the work. Crain’s New York Magazine has awarded them with the honor of being one of the “Best Places to Work in New York” and the firm has won city and national awards, such as the Lucy G. Moses Award from the New York Landmarks Conservancy, as well as two Chrysalis Awards for Remodeling Excellence and a Qualified Remodeler’s Master Design Award. He works with remarkable designers like Jamie Drake, Kerry Joyce, Jeffrey Hitchcock, David Scott and Kenny Alpert; and architects like John B. Murray, Haute Architecture, Danny Forster and Timothy Bryant. Dream Project My dream is to build for clients who are looking for a long-term home in New York that they intend to pass on to their children. When those are the parameters, all decisions are obvious.







lias Associates is a New York City-based boutique design-build studio implementing a broad spectrum of talents and expertise while working collaboratively with clients. “From the broad strokes of architecture to intricate custom designs, we thoughtfully unlock the physical possibilities of the location and select design elements that create a connection to a place that is both lasting and continually enriching.” Elias Associates has developed a range of furniture and product design that reflects the elegance of the architectural lines that concurrently infuse the layered textures of the interiors. They define their signature look as based on their clients’ “confidence in our ability to seamlessly juxtapose the connections between lifestyle and personal aesthetic with architecture and interiors.” Elias Associates specialize in both residential and commercial design, each being challenging in different ways. “Commercial takes a more universal approach because we are reflecting the culture of the company to create a sense of place for many types of individuals. Residential design’s personal element is a reflection of the owner’s unique style and taste.” Their dream project: “Our dream project would be to design a home where the topography of the site directs the design. Perhaps a house tucked away on a mountain side, overlooking magnificent terrain that hides a residence.”


Featured projects “Our project at 157 is a glass-walled, floating home in the sky. Surrounded by clouds and nature, you feel suspended above the world, achieving a privacy rarely experienced within the bustling metropolis.” “For a project on Long Island, New York, we created an identity that synthesized old with the new. The somewhat stark modern portions of the house respectfully connect to and overlap with the vintage, turn of the century, shingle style of the original house. The selection of exterior materials, geometrically cut stone, zinc panels, and black steel converse well with the traditional details of the older structure.”

Surrounded by clouds and nature, you feel as though you are suspended above the world.


Photography by Nina Choi






is a bespoke art-consulting firm focused on introducing high calibre contemporary artwork to a discerning clientele. In the span of twenty years, Linda Warren has curated more than two hundred exhibitions in her eponymous gallery, built large-scale art collections for noteworthy corporations and private individuals, and has developed relationships with hundreds of artists and galleries throughout the world. Known for fostering the careers of numerous young and emerging artists, Linda has sold more than 10 million dollars of their artwork. “We have entered numerous projects before the start of new construction and have assisted our clients in the entire process of


building a new art collection – overseeing numerous site-specific commissions, curating from a holistic point of view by developing themes that carry through the space, framing, special lighting, delivery and installation of outdoor large-scale sculptures, publishing brochures, books and guiding tours of existing collections, and the deaccessioning or recuration of existing artwork. LWP is known to engage thoughtfully and timely in every step of the process.” Believing more than ever in the ability and necessity for art to be a critical pathway for meaningful dialogue, LWP is passionate about art’s unique ability to transform and enlighten both a space and a mindset.


“For us, the process of directing the discovery and acquisition of fine artwork should be joyous, creative and fulfilling, knowing that what we provide is an opportunity to enhance the lives of both our artists and clientele.” “After 15 years of running my gallery in Chicago, I decided to close my brick and mortar space. While many of the artists I represented in the gallery benefit tremendously from my work as a consultant, being able to work freely with artists and galleries from around the world has broadened my ability to promote the arts (my personal mission) and create corporate or residential spaces that reflect a merging of my eye and vision with the goals and interests of the client.”


Linda Warren’s focus is contemporary art and clients who collect that, all the more so as she prefers exploring and discovering emerging talent. “I have found that I have been very successful over the years at discerning strong up-andcomers early in their careers and gaging their future relevance. This has been largely validated by the increase in value, over a relatively short period of time, of the art works and collections I have advised on.”

artist. “I do not think art consultants are THE taste and value arbiters of today because taste and value are both very subjective terms that have nothing to do with an individual’s personal connection and/or appreciation for a work of art and/ or their decision to actually own and live with it. Many people are nervous expressing their opinions about art because they feel intimidated by an attitude in the art world that certain people/artists/galleries opinions are more important than others.

Art collecting is undergoing a quiet revolution with incorporating blockchain technology and increasingly eliminating middlemen. However, the role of the art professional is undiminished in terms of validating the worth of a contemporary

I find myself thinking that about my own opinion some times: “I am the arbiter of good taste and value… just listen to me”. That is the wrong approach: a consultant should first and foremost spend time listening to their client and really work

...Whatever a person is more attracted to, be it abstraction, representation, figuration, landscape, photography, painting, etc. one will find a treasure trove of artists who work within that genre, pushing it into exciting and significant directions.

toward figuring out what type of work will get them excited. The consultant should assist them in understanding the context of their taste and how and where it fits in within the history of art and the contemporary dialogue. I think whatever a person is more attracted to, be it abstraction, representation, figuration, landscape, photography, painting, etc. one will find a treasure trove of artists who work within that genre, pushing it into exciting and significant directions. Because technology has made both viewing and acquiring artwork easier, the art world seems ever more vast and overwhelming. This is a positive, for the consultant can both use those resources to more easily explore the art world with their client and have real discussions about what they are looking at, before they even set foot in a gallery or art fair together. “In my opinion, getting people comfortable with the process of looking at art and understanding what they are looking at has a real value and is much more difficult to achieve then introducing art as a commodity, or status symbol, whose value is monetary rather than intrinsic. The consultant should be extremely

knowledgeable and well-versed in ascertaining the value of the work that they present to their client, especially in an ever-changing marketplace that lacks transparency and is often full of hype. Consultants must do their due diligence in determining value - looking at everything that goes into the pricing - quality, provenance, resumes; who is collecting the work, what do reviewers write, what and which institutions, if any, have started acquiring this work. All of these are critical factors in the process of ascertaining value and are where the consultant should be extremely careful and thorough.” Acquiring art as investment is not impervious to upturns, bubbles and downturns, even if investor collectors tend to put their money into blue chip art, using expendable income. “Even if they overpay for an acquisition, they are generally buying art that should be sellable at some price. I am more worried about what art bubbles do for the artist. In particular, to established contemporary artists who have seen a great deal of success, but whose prices have risen quickly and possibly too high to

justify the spike in demand and interest. When the market temperature eases, or certain works stop selling for whatever reason, there comes a rush to sell. People dump their artwork – putting it on auction to only see it not sell, or for the prices to drop precipitously in a very public space, permanently documented in the world wide web. The result is the artist can no longer move their work at the higher prices so they either have to lower them (which is bad news for their existing collectors) or sometimes not sell it at all. Collectors in the investment market need to be wary of what they are buying from these hot art stars who may eventually suffer tremendously from overinflated prices.” On trends in the art world, Warren says: “There most definitely are trends in the art world. The appreciation for figurative and representational painting is on an upswing at the moment, as is experimental photography. Most recently there has been a lot of exciting and beautiful work being made by African and African-American artists, both male and female, finally getting recognition and much deserved attention, both critically and commercially.”


On the place of AI in the art world: “While I believe AI is still very much at its infancy, it is definitely a new tool for artists, as was the camera once, for allowing the creative potential of humans to advance. That is not to say that the work will be deemed as beautiful or soulful as that created exclusively and solely by humans. Still, I believe it is a tool worthy of investigation and experimentation. Some artists working with with new technology include Jason Salavon, Siebren Versheeg, Theo Triantafyllidis, Golan Levin. Christies recently listed for auction a work by Obvious that received a great deal of criticism. These works are exploring expressive potential and are, I believe, both aesthetically and conceptually rich. Artists that are capable of developing algorithms that test the nature of this non-human output and its value to humans lend an important and critical piece to a very relevant and critical discussion of what AI will mean to us in the near and distant future.�








rian Worthington is the founder of the eponymous BWA design studio. A selfdescribed “organic perfectionist”, Worthington has established a word of mouth reputation among an international blue chip clientele who appreciates and shares his sense of aesthetics, described as “understated, refined, beautifully scaled and proportioned”. The studio is based in the centre of New York City and provides a full service design solutions that include bespoke pieces for each interior. The process could take one to three years because “we believe our clients should have the best design and craftsmanship on the market”, says Worthington, who is both fastidious and inherently versatile in his approach. The BWA interiors exude quintessential elegance and projects tend to be based in ultra high end locations. This is because the studio is socially


connected to the type of client that buys in such locations. “Our American and Chinese clients are all titans of industry of their chosen field and we have European aristocracy.” BWA’s dream project “A dream project would be a boutique hotel because I would like to bring our sophisticated residential detail to a commercial space. With our attention to detail and the built-in refinement we are known for.” Featured projects THE DEEPDALE GOLF CLUB: This is one of the world’s most exclusive golf clubs in proximity to a large capital city (NYC), founded in 1924 by William K. Vanderbilt II. There are only 280 members and we have been their exclusive design firm for the past 11 years.


OLD BROOKVILLE: An Old Brookville project on the "Gold Coast" of Long Island, originally built in 1927 for the prominent Taft Family. This house has only had 3 homeowners, our client being the 3rd. We restored and renovated the interior over a 2.5 year period and had complete control over all interior pieces, finishes and materials as this was a turnkey installation. We recommended installing a man-made pond below the lower lawn at the rear of the property. Thankfully the client approved and the pond is truly the main exterior feature of the property now and a focal point seen from the drawing room and dining room.”

“A dream project would be a boutique hotel because I would like to bring our sophisticated residential detail to a commercial space.” 82




Casa Pamplona




Architects (NZA) was founded in 2011 by Nato Zuazua and Gilda Quintanilla, both from Monterrey Mexico. With a strong design -to-build focus, the firm caters to clients in Mexico who require a direct interaction with the architect in charge of their project. The 8 strong firm has its headquarters in the corporate hub of San Pedro Garza García because of the high demand of quality architecture in the area. “This logistical location gives NZA a perfect platform to showcase our work while its industry driven spirit compels NZA to keep pace with technological advancements in our field.” “In terms of architectural design we express ourselves primarily in a “contemporary rustic” language that we apply to most of our residential projects. Craftsmanship and value are the overriding concern in all of them. The handling and care of each component (marble - wood - masonry) represents a “white glove” scenario. We try to use local or Mexican sourced materials, as well as interior design and furnishings. We work with clients whose needs and expectations are exceptionally high.”

←↑ Casa Al


Featured projects CASA AL This is a project where the warmth of the materials interacts subtly with the recurring changes in natural light. Concrete, wood and stone provide natural tones and blend well with the existing vegetation. In fact, incorporating the environment is an essential part of our design. The principal features of the project are the use of quality Mexican materials and this balance between shades and colors. The vast open spaces and the way they interact; the spectacular views and the interplay between nature and design, tone and texture all contribute to a feeling of serenity, all the while resulting in a highly functional home. The residence has three bedrooms, gym, swimming pool, and a semi-Olympic swimming corridor. ↑ Casa Al


↓ Casa Pamplona

↑↓ Casa Pamplona

CASA PAMPLONA This 550m2 built residence located in San Pedro Garza Garcia NL features play area, gym, 3 bedrooms and a terrace with the most privileged views of the Sierra Madre. Three continuous and smooth exterior walls give way to some spectacular nature and Chico land, making the visual impact monumental. The use of apparent concrete and the interplay of opposite materials is an essential part of the aesthetics here. The interaction of the concrete in its crude form in conjunction with weathered oak beams on one hand and with white marble floors on the other is striking. The visually loaded roofs and walls give clarity to the floors. This, in turn, transmits a slight sensation of clarity in space. Carpentry is specific to the region and interior design incorporates typical Mexican furnishings. Dream project “I'd love to build a retreat in the middle of the forest, something small and unpretentious, incorporating just the basics.”






ARIANGEL COGHLAN is a Mexican designer who has transformed more than 500 homes over a career span of two decades, but also has a substantial body of commercial projects in the hospitality space. While the focus of residential projects is “the people inhabiting the spaces”, hospitalityrelated projects need to address different imperatives. “Customers will not be the only ones inhabiting the space and it is the design that largely determines the success of the place. The interesting thing about designing a restaurant or a hotel is that it is worth making edgier proposals, because people who make use of these spaces will spend short periods of time in them. The creative challenge is fascinating, the possibilities


are endless and the choices to be made are sometimes determined by external factors. From the designer’s point of view, it is an interesting challenge to create harmonious spaces that are attractive to a variety of users.” Mariangel Coghlan Design works primarily with Mexican clients and foreigners who invest in Mexico. The designer herself takes pride in being Mexican and this is reflected in her “100% made in Mexico” range of products. “However, our objective is to look for quality and excellence, and to use the best materials available on the market, which means that we don’t only and exclusively work with local products. Ultimately, it is essential to have a very clear identity when

a space is transformed and that is what I strive to achieve.” “We consider ourselves part of a global network of economic, cultural and social connections: we are all affected by the decisions and actions of human beings in distant lands. Small actions anywhere in the world might engender terrible tragedies or great humanitarian progress elsewhere on the planet. At the origin of our style is a reflection on the international interdependence of interior design trends, projected on the canvass of the wonderful shapes, colors and natural resources our country in particular offers. The spaces we design, create, and transform are the result of this inspiring and overflowing passion of living in Mexico.”

Ceiba Facing the Mexican gulf beach, on top of a cliff, this 2,000 square meter apartment rises with an incredible ocean view. We designed the distribution and all the details to create a safe and beautiful home to share and enjoy with family and friends, using tropical woods and sand color stone walls.

We consider ourselves part of a global network of economic, cultural and social connections: we are all affected by the decisions and actions of human beings in distant lands. 93


“At the heart of good design is the human being - no matter how beautiful and well achieved any given space, it only becomes meaningful when inhabited by people. Reinventing spaces is a mission with which I wake up enthusiastically every day. I hope to be able transform our human environment through design for a better, fairer and more beautiful world.” Mariangel Coghlan also designs very distinctive children’s and contemporary product ranges. “I like to design furniture for the little ones, thinking about the scale and dimensions of the children. I have developed several collections, which we sell at our show room, at Casa Palacio (Department store) and online ( I have designed containers, beds, nightstands, drawers, cribs, cradles, rocking chairs, tables, chairs and some interactive pieces like “Anacleto and anacletin” that represent dragons/ dinosaurs made of solid wood, so that children can use them as rocking chairs and play. Each design can be customized and we offer a wide variety of colors and shades that can be combined freely, so that everyone could add a personal touch to their space.”


Cedro Immersed in the middle of the forest, this open-space cabin brings the charm of its surroundings to its interior. We were inspired by the context to make a warm and contemporary Mexican design. I used dark and deep shades of green and pink, sprinkled with citrus tones, combined with rustic textures and materials typical of this wonderful region.





One Place at Riverfront Crossings



Kinnick North End Zone Corner ↓ West Campus Transit ↓

eumann Monson, an architectural firm based in Iowa City and Des Moines, takes pride in the application of “pragmatic Midwestern sensibility” to its projects, a concept it defines thus:

tillable soil, abundant timber, and a moreor-less tolerable climate and sought nothing further. If Utah’s foundation motto is “This is the Place,” and California’s is “Eureka,” Iowa’s might well be “This Will Do.”

“Pragmatism engages the real and the tangible. It values ideas that impact the human experience. Pragmatic architecture proceeds incrementally, experimentally. We modify environments, assess impact, and gather feedback. Innovation trumps invention. Theory and praxis don’t work alone; pragmatism integrates them into a practice of thoughtful making.”

He further juxtaposes the difference between the “unpretentious structures of the Midwest” and “the arts & crafts style endemic to California and Boston”, concluding that: “Actual craftsman houses are native to Iowa and to other states throughout the Midwest.”

The firm’s leader, Tim Schroeder, goes on to quote Tom Leslie’s Flyover Manifesto: “Those bound for California sought adventure and fortune, but Iowa’ssettlers were the pragmatists who crossed the Mississippi, found

“Neumann Monson’s work resonates in Midwestern streetscapes and skylines because we address collective ambition through informed solutions. Basic design elements build experiential depth with the eloquence of function, construction, materials, and space.” The four pillars that define the Newmann Monsoon practice are: • Pride in our work, our clients, and our cities • Shared Vision • Uncommon Care • Accessible Excellence Featured projects Architecture never happens in a vacuum. It interacts with its environment in so many ways, but, looking back on our work, one could describe our approach with three basic actions: thread, anchor, and stir. Thread Our projects often link to other bits of the built environment and to our own work; previous or future. Sometimes they connect in a narrative sense; a conceptual linking. Other times it is literal. In both cases we aim to thread our projects into the larger community fabric. A good example of our ‘threading’ is at the University of Iowa, where we’re currently adding a North Endzone seating and lounge complex to the University’s Kinnick stadium. That project, under construction, will be a showpiece for the University. It’s also a clasp in a larger necklace, bringing together two of NMA’s previous works.


Plaza Towers ↓

Many of our projects better define the areas around them, providing a shared identity and a center of gravity.


Market One ↓→

One Place at Riverfront Crossings →


Lone Tree Recreation Center →↓

A few years ago, we designed a University transportation center to the north of the stadium. The newest North Endzone provides an opportunity to bridge over the street and physically connect to the transportation center. Naturally, it will relate to the West stadium seating and press box as well, with material and aesthetic relationships closely considered. Anchor Many of our projects better define the areas around them, providing a shared identity and a center of gravity. Recently we completed a community wellness center for the small town of Lone Tree, Iowa. The building’s language is clear and direct. Transparent and translucent materials at the street front usher in the town during the day and project users’ movement at night. Materiality is minimal and durable, with black-painted steel structuring interconnected, day-lit spaces. Stir Stirring is a slow process; an accumulation of agreements and incremental consensusbuilding among diverse stakeholders. Sometimes we choreograph this on an urban scale, as was the case in Riverfront Crossings in Iowa City and in the East Village in Des Moines. Other times we orchestrate it within flexible, multi-function buildings like Plaza Tower in Iowa City and Market One in Des Moines. A dream project? We’d prefer a dream client; the kind of teammate that charms and challenges; trusts and questions; switches from playful to focused; with a deep appreciation of things, materials, and space; and an awe for what it can mean for people to interact.








onathan Rachman, one of the most colorful designers in the Bay area and founder of the eponymous JRD brand, is Indonesian-born, but steeped in European and Western culture.

His 2000ft 2 San Francisco store attracts an international clientele and showcases antiques, jewelry and objets d’art from around the world, as well as the designer’s ongoing collaborations with other renowned brands. His motto is “Thoughtful Elegance” and, looking at his projects, the style does indeed exude classic elegance, tending towards the opulent but without ever looking dated. “For me, this comes naturally. I never follow trends or what’s ‘hot’ out there. This does not mean I am not aware, but I don’t simply do what’s voguish unless that’s what my clients desire. I am a self-proclaimed romantic both in my personal life and as a designer. To me it is important to design from the heart and to stay true to myself in everything I do. I was never formally trained as an interior designer, I don’t follow formal rules, and this makes my work truly an expression of my aesthetics. Over the years I have been collecting every manner of objects, artefacts and furniture as long as I can remember. As a collector, I also have many sources which help during my design process. Ultimately, for timeless opulence not to look dated, it should also feel effortless.” The JRD interiors are at once very distinctive and eclectic which is another dichotomy, yet one that works very well in Rachman’s case. “As much as it sounds impossible for some people, I see the future style of a room or of any space in my head. First, I always want to know who the owner of the space or home is - not only their background but also their sense of style (if any), their lifestyle and what they love. Second, I need to know the function of each room (or at times I may suggest). Lastly, it is my job to combine, envisage and translate what I see in my head into reality. To me, it is always about the individual.

San Francisco Decorator Showcase, 2017 and 2019


Because I have lived in Asia, Europe and the USA and have travelled the world, my design reference and mind library have been influenced by all the places I have lived in and visited. The East and West aesthetic influence me, naturally - each plays more strongly than the other or in balance depending on the projects. I was raised old school by my parents and all my references starts with the classic, be it in art, fashion or interior design. From that, I modify as necessary to customize the project. It is as much of a mindset as it is a thought process. Fundamentally it is a mindset, but I have a very organized thought process which enables me to achieve what is required from start to the end goal.” Jonathan Rachman started as a store owner before establishing himself as a designer – usually done in the reverse order. “I find it is helpful for clients to see my personal aesthetics in store, which doubles up as my private playground. They experience through the visual and the tactile what I am all about. The store is a vehicle showing my true sense of style and those who appreciate it are either those who subscribe to it or are able to say, “Ah! This is what I have been looking for all along!”. Our world coalesces around a similar sense of aesthetic. My store has become a branding and marketing tool, and it also helps the clients to express what they like.”


For timeless opulence not to look dated, it should also feel effortless.

Downtown Penthouse


St. Regis


Pacific Heights


Featured projects “The featured projects showcase distinct sets of style, as follows: the maximalist layered opulence; the perfectly edited elegance (San Francisco Decorator Showcase 2019 and 2017); the pared-down modern minimalist (St. Regis project and the skyscraper Penthouse) and a transitional style (Pacific Heights and Dogpatch). I have selected the above in order to illustrate the breadth of my style and my adaptability from one project to the next, based on clients’ lifestyle, architecture and taking into consideration geographical location.” Dream project “I am blessed that I am currently doing my dream project: a multiple private villas project on the island of Bali. Bali is close to my heart: not only because it is one of the most beautiful spots in the world and the people are beyond hospitable and kind, but it is also an island in my home country that holds a lot of wonderful personal memories. At the same time, commercial aircraft and airlines have been my passion since I was a child. The amount of time I spend in and out of airports and airplanes is astronomical. I love flying. So, another dream project would be to design an airline interior on the ground and in the air: the office, the lounge, the uniform, the interior and every aspect of the airline’s branding and look.”







ased in Mexico City, MarqCo is an integrated architecture and interior design studio focused primarily on residential projects but also handling comercial and hospitality clients. Headed by Covadonga Hernandez, the firm delivers fully installed spaces, complete with furniture, accessories and art works. Founded in 1996, it has grown to four showrooms and its own factory where project-specific designs are produced, experimenting with innovative techniques and materials. Featured projects “Every project is important and for me and none is more or less so than the others. Each is a challenge that requires me to give my best and makes me grow porfessionally. Definitely every project has left its mark on me. Recently I designed an FBO in Mexico which was very interesting in that I had to learn the operation, the needs and aspirations of the people who would interact in these spaces. It was very gratifying to see the result, we created cozy spaces that makes you feel at home, with different needs in each area.� My dream projects would be to design a yacht, a boutique hotel, a private residence in the Mediterranean... in fact, any project that is different to what I normally do as this would mean a new challenge and accumulative knowledge.








ofia Aspe is a Mexico-based interior designer whose output covers both residential and commercial projects across Mexico, the USA and Israel. Her portfolio is diverse and a testament to her versatility: current projects range from a pilgrimage hotel in Magdala, Israel, to an Art Deco hotel and a contemporary French restaurant in Mexico City, to an office in Puebla, to16 residential projects in Cabo, Valle de Bravo, Yucatan, Mexico City, Austin, LAs Vegas and Vail. The mix is roughly 80% residential and 20% commercial, although the commercial project commissions are growing at a faster pace.




Mexico is in a great space right now in terms of art, architecture and design. We are no longer known for just our amazing craftsmanship but also for creative ideas, concepts and trends. Sofia Aspe is torn when asked to identify a single iconic or just favourite project in her portfolio – it’s akin to preferring one child over the others, she says. Rather, she cherishes a particular aspect of each. “I've learned from absolutely all of them and we literally put our soul in each one.” "The ‘firsts’ tend to have a special place in my heart; my first full construction, finishes and Interior Design project; my first restaurant, my first project outside Mexico City and my first project in the US will surely remain as very special.” "In terms of scale, some projects are more important than others, such as the Puebla Club House which has a spa, a gym, a restaurant for 280 people, 8 rooms, a

business centre, a cigar room, a kids room, a pool and a games room. That was a big project. Another is our recently finished Salon 730: a high end beauty and barber salon in Mexico City. Yet another is a 2000 m2 beach house we´re designing in Los Cabos." Mexico has, of course, gained a great deal of traction in the last several years as a creative and investment hub, beyond and above being just a holiday destination. Sofia Aspe confirms this: "Mexico is in a great space right now in terms of art, architecture and design. We are no longer known for just our amazing craftsmanship but also for creative ideas, concepts and trends. We are an enormously

creative country full of talent and dreams, and we are reaching to the world at large, so that it gets to know us. My own company has accomplished, to date, five projects in the US and one in Israel, still all owned by Mexican clients who have been established in these countries for decades. Our first international clients are from California and we are designing their amazingly beautiful beach house in Cabo.” Sofia’s dream project? "My dream project would be to design a superyacht and generally, all projects where clients give me full creative freedom and trust.”







Pop of Color Gold



he Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) based MG Interior Design Group was founded by Maria Gabriela Mendoza, the recipient of two WWBID awards, and a 15 year veteran of developing both residential and commercial projects. She is a self-avowed “lover of home creations” and says her interiors project “peace, warmth, a clean contemporary style, order, and personality.” “My objective and my passion are to create spaces that complete clients’ life and dreams.” Her interiors are varied and eclectic and one might say that versatility is, in fact, her trademark.


“I create contemporary spaces that feel like home. And yes, they are versatile and beautiful, and can be either eclectic or simple, as required by each particular project and client.” If there is a common “Maria Gabriela Mendoza” thread running through her residential projects, it is the serenity that they exude. She strives to combine neutrality with personality and achieve a sense of warmth. Dream project “My dream project would be to design an international hotel and also, the home of a renowned international diplomat.”

THE ART LOFT is the home apartment of a young bachelor and art collector. It was a challenge to design the spaces in a way that that the interior design did not detract from or compete with the art works.


CALIDEZ URBANA is a city apartment that feels tropical and homely.


Interiors should always reflect the owners’ personality.


Calidez Urbana



POP OF COLOR GOLD is a contemporary apartment on three levels with great personality, hints of color and gold.







rancesca Bassi is a Chile-based interior designer who established her studio in the early 2000, after completing her studies in industrial design. Bassi believes that “aesthetics can and should be accessible to everyone and that sophistication ought to be a way of living”. Her focus has been primarily on residential and commercial projects in Chile, however, she has recently broadened her client base with projects and collaborations in Milan and Monte Carlo. With Chile fast developing into a super trendy destination, there is no shortage of American and European investors looking to buy. Bassi confirms this and elaborates on “location, location, location”: “Chile has one of the wildest and most diverse landscapes in the world which attracts many foreigners who in turn influence our design industry. In my view there are three must visit places in Chile: Atacama Desert with its amazing nature and hotels; Colchagua Valley, the best expression of Chilean winery culture,


and Chilean Patagonia with its fiords and glaciers, along with its unique hospitality industry experiences.”

both challenged each other, pushing the boundaries of creativity and innovation, and achieving a truly unique concept.”

The Bassi Design look and approach are defined by intensely colourful spaces full of life and energy. Behind this is in an exhaustive process, says Bassi, during which “we identify how to enhance the quality of life of my clients, not only from an aesthetic point of view but also from a space functionality perspective”.

“Another deserving of a special mention is a residential project in Milan (2018), the city that has become my second home. This was my first one abroad after coming back to Chile. Directing a project remotely is never easy, but we implemented an agile management methodology that allowed us to complete it with outstanding results and in the agreed time frame.”

“In order to achieve this, I apply an inclusive methodology, i.e. involving clients in the creative process from the outset. This makes each project unique. I’m extremely client oriented and believe that immersing them in a co-creation environment is the best way to ensure a superior level of engagement and satisfaction with both the process and outcome.” Favourite project to date “One of my favourite projects is the HIP HOTEL in Santiago (2016). Not only has it become one of the coolest and trendiest hotels in the city, the collaborative process with my clients meant that we

Bassi’s dream project “My dream project would be to design my own boutique hotel. I haven’t chosen the location yet but for sure it will be a place with a strong and unique landscape. I have always loved the idea of designing a hotel for myself. This is not only because I could have total freedom over the creative process, but also for the fact that I love concept hotels. An essential part of the job is hosting interesting people from all over the world and this is what really thrills me.”

Aesthetics can and should be accessible to everyone... and sophistication ought to be a way of living.








enka Soares is a Rio de Janeiro born Brazilian designer who is now firmly a New Yorker, having lived there for the past 22 years. She remains close to her roots, however, and draws inspiration from travelling around the world on an almost monthly basis. Lenka moved to the USA 26 years ago when she studied at FIT, eventually graduating in Fine Arts in San Diego. Lenka works primarily with Brazilian clients who keep a base in New York but considers herself a world citizen, as well as a true New Yorker. “I started my own firm because I wanted to have greater freedom to be able to create different concept designs and to travel. Being independent is much easier. We work harder but freedom is priceless” “Mixing “low and high” is my passion in design, while always trying to accommodate the lifestyle of the client to the mood board. I don’t follow any specific period, I just try to present what I believe is beautiful. Working on different projects, from a farm in Rio de Janeiro to a colorful house in Westport, CT, to commercial spaces.... all with different mood boards, clients and energies is so amazing” Lenka believes that the energy in every space is a composite of memories, travels, mementoes purchased in the course of a lifetime... and that it is of the utmost importance a home doesn’t look soul-less, or like coming out of a catalogue. Having a degree in architecture gives an interior designer a definitive edge for obvious reasons: the two disciplines are complementary, even if they have a different focus. “When you study architecture you have a more defined sense of space but both architects and designers share the same goal, connecting and integrating to accomplish the client’s goal”




“An interior designer sees space differently, focusing attention on different types of details that an architect does. It is another perspective of space relating more to beauty and comfort”



“An interior designer sees space differently, focusing attention on different types of details that an architect does. It is another perspective of space relating more to beauty and comfort” Lenka firmly believes that “we must constantly learn, being aware of what is trendy, yet never lose our essence”. She draws inspiration from regular trips to the Amazon jungle where she detoxes from urban life, as well as from visiting the Angkor Wat temples of Cambodia, the Museum of Islamic art in Doha, Japan and Marrakech. “I love different architecture and design, with their diverse cultures behind them. Always being able to see the architecture combined with the interior design is important in order to learn how to manage space in different situations” Lenka’s aesthetic is firmly contemporary; classic rather than ostentatious, with whimsical elements here and there. In her work she tries to transform her client’s style into what she believes is beautiful and what “goes well together”. “I don’t follow a specific design concept. Rather, I try to put together what the clients expect based on their lifestyle and taste” “Today the priority is not to have an ostentatious home, but a more comfortable and easy to maintain one. The goal is to transform the client’s “dream” into reality” Featured Project “The apartment in Upper East Side that is very classic yet incorporating modern elements. It was designed for a young Brazilian family and shows that modern design can be mixed with vintage furniture and an amazing artwork collection” Dream Project “I have been going to Marrakech 3-4 times a year lately and am always amazed by the beauty of Moroccan architecture and craftsmanship. I love to stay in beautiful riads such as Tarabel. It is simply magical to enter a little tiny door and find yourself in a jewel in the middle of the medina. My dream is to get a commission to redesign an old and destroyed riad from scratch”





Marina Palms



ilvana Borges describes herself as an artist and designer, with her own particular perception. The Brazilian designer, now based in Florida, United States, grew up in a traditional environment. She then moved to Brasilia, one of the most modern cities in Brazil and the world - architecturally speaking. The new town has given her a great knowledge about different styles of architecture and design, she says. Silvana adds, “After working in Brazil for more than 30 years, I decided to come to the US where I had the opportunity to keep pursuing my passion, creating interior designs which incorporate art. Besides, I have the great pleasure of representing renowned Brazilian artists in the States and producing limited editions of high quality prints, introducing quality art at reasonable prices to everyone. I feel strongly about the latter.�


Porsche Design Tower An incredible view of the beach and an extraordinary luxurious proposal are found in this building. The proposal consists of an elevator taking the owner directly into their unit, with a private swimming pool. Some elements are incorporated into the apartment giving personality and comfort to the unit, such as, special lighting effect, art pieces, and a spectacular mirror TV. Furthermore, Italian furniture and French pieces belong to the selection of materials. White marble flooring and innumerous shades and textures of gray are incorporated into all spaces along with art pieces to enhance the beauty concept.

Luxury for me is not only about expensive furniture, Venetian chandeliers and golden details. Luxury is comfort and the feeling of meriting all the effort that one has put into achieving this special Miami lifestyle.


Silvana’s portfolio is diverse, both in terms of spaces and styles, with a particularly intriguing design style. On how her approach and vision evolved, Silvana says the following:

Each customer is unique, and has a different lifestyle. I’m only a facilitator, an instrument that perceives the needs of the client and transforms them into reality.


“ I believe creating a different and original design concept is important. Mixing different cultures and styles allows me to create an unique design for each client using an design-art approach.” “My vast knowledge of all design styles allows me to move from the most up to date to the classic. This gives me a complete freedom to cater to the most exquisite tastes and create customized spaces for each client”

Marina Palms A charming summer home apartment located in Miami designed as a practical, functional and welcoming space. In the living room, a new concept was created as a mini bar, lower than usual serving to host a small cellar, wine tasting, and also as a workstation. Speakers displayed as wall sculptures gives a touch of originality to the space.

The one-way mirror in the living entrance was a unique solution to divide spaces. The Den receives natural light and has visual access to the entire living room, while from the dining room we can only perceive a large mirror surface, enhancing the beauty of space.


The artists chosen for the first US print editions are Tarciso Viriato, Sérgio Ferreira, Dilza Araújo, Rafael Ferreira, and Sheila Tapajós.

Designing a space goes beyond just choosing furniture and colors. It requires an accurate concept, aesthetic perception, and sensibility to create a space that provides a sublime visual and sensory comfort in addition to an emotional engagement. Bothaniko project For this amazing luxury community of modern architecture, the living room space with its double-height ceiling with so many lights was balanced with a dark grey wall to incorporate Lili Meira’s art photography.


Great design is all about balance, contrast and lighting, coming together with an understanding of the desires of the individuals who will inhabit a space. I appreciate the freedom of an eclectic style, because it is the great equalizer. It’s a mixture of textures, time, periods, styles, trends, and colors. It is the marriage of old and new, East and West, luxurious and humble, serious and fanciful. It enhances the independent beauty of each piece. Every space must have a story to tell. This is the best option for those who want a unique space where concept is a balance between traditional and contemporary elements. As a result, in addition to the art pieces, the space is ever classic and personalized, timeless. It is a masterpiece with an unique atmosphere that reflects the lifestyle and soul of its inhabitants.




Lake Island



he Consulting House is an Atlanta, Georgia based interior design firm founded by Janice Dietz in 2001. Prior to the launch of her firm, Janice attended Cornell University College of Architecture, graduated from The University of Pennsylvania, received her MBA, worked at Ernst & Young in their consulting practice as a Senior Manager and as a Director at The Coca-Cola Company.

every selection and specification for all aspects of a construction or renovation project to decorating the interiors of any and all spaces. What sets The Consulting House apart from other firms is that all projects blend interior architecture and design expertise with the business acumen to deliver superior project management, client advisory skills and problem solving prowess.

Janice is an avid museum quality art collector and patron of the arts.

The Consulting House evolved from a philosophy of being involved in projects of all sizes and working with clients in ways that best met their budget and time constraints. The firm’s emphasis is on quality, value and attention to detail while creating innovative, artistic designs that reflect a comfortable sophistication and timeless quality.

The Consulting House is a full-service interior design firm that can assist during the entire lifecycle of any design project. This includes creating architectural drawings to working on





Lake Island Š S. Diane Johnson Photography

Featured projects Two significant projects in terms of scope include creating the overall vision for the design project and leading the design, construction and interior decorating phases of the project. An Overall Home Renovation (Nacoochee) Full service design project that involved creating all architectural drawings for the renovation. This included tearing down walls and moving the location of various interior spaces. The Consulting House created the vision for the design and was responsible for all architectural design details, all cabinetry design, selection of all exterior and interior finishes, and decorating the entire house.

New home Construction (Lake Island) Full service design project starting from creating the overall design. The Consulting House was responsible for all design details and decisions including specifying the architectural interior details, lighting plans, cabinetry design, and interior and exterior finishes. Upon completion of the construction, The Consulting House decorated the entire house and later designed and built out a lower level media room, golf simulation room, exercise room, recreation room, full bathroom and bar. Dream Project A full service, start to finish project with a significant budget, and working closely and collaboratively with a great team.







arlor Interiors is an interior design firm based in Miami, FL and Los Angeles, CA, founded by Taylor Anne Abess. Taylor was raised in Southern California; her husband, Matthew Abess, a historian specializing in 19th and 20th century art and design, is a fourth generation Miamian. So, Taylor explains, “the two coasts were natural places for us to explore the role of design in diverse urban geographies. Just like clients, each setting has its own needs; navigating and satisfying those needs keeps us challenged and inspired.” Taylor previously spent over a decade living in New York City as the Founder and Creative Director of a multi-line fashion showroom that, from 2008 to 2015, incubated and launched numerous young and emerging designers. While the fashion industry satisfied Taylor’s affinity for the confluence of texture and line, interior design was never far from the fore. She spent much of her childhood on project sites alongside her mother, who nurtured her passion for composition, layering, and space planning.


Wonderland Photography by The Ingalls @ingallsphoto


Rivo Alto Photography by Zachary Balber @zacharybalber

There is so much to learn from the history of design — how design has responded and adapted to the everevolving conditions of private and public life. 168

Parlor Interiors’ projects draw on a deep knowledge of historic design, all the while remaining sensitive to the richness of the contemporary design environment. Taylor describes the firm’s ethos as such:

Carachele Salon Photography by Josh Tyvan @joshtyvan

“It is important to look back as much as we look forward. There is so much to learn from the history of design—not just techniques and styles, but, crucially, how design has responded and adapted to the ever-evolving conditions of private and public life. Our guiding principle is that every space we create should satisfy the practical needs of our clients while also inspiring them with the wide range of emotions that design can evoke: warmth, yes, but also mystery and mutability. Our ultimate goal is for our clients to walk away feeling that their space arouses emotion in a way that reflects them in earnest.” Featured and Milestone Projects “We’ve just completed our first commercial space—a hair salon, Carachele Salon, on Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood, CA. We created a wondrous world of nudes and

creams, textures and tubing, that the owner says she “never wants to leave”. Last summer, we finished Taylor’s family home in Laurel Canyon, which was featured in California Home & Design under the title “Palette of Personality”— a nod to the decadent use of purples, greens, mauves, pinks, black, greens, creams and whites throughout the interior and exterior of the property. We have fun residential projects in progress in both Miami Beach, FL and Santa Barbara, CA. One is a new build, which is a first for us. It’s been a dream working through the interior architectural details, including a plaster spiral staircase supported by airplane metal. Some of the others include a 1920s Spanish Revival home and a 1930s Neoclassical home that each are undergoing full renovations and additions while preserving details of decades past.” Dream Project “To create a design experience that unfolds and evolves across multiple sites—from home and office to airplane and pied-aterre, like the volumes of a beautiful box-set that all together cohere while individually presenting their own unique stories and emotions for their inhabitants.”



Micah Stool




ichael Sean Stolworthy is the Las Vegas-based founder of the MSMD | STUDIO.

After many years as a corporate designer, he decided to set up on his own in order to give expression to his personal ideas and skill sets. “I never set out to be a furniture designer, I just wanted to make elegant organic forms and in the process I found myself making functional pieces with a purpose. Each new piece that came about was like my own form of poetry, telling a story of my past experiences teaching myself techniques and developing proprietary methods to manipulate surfaces in a multitude of ways. It was a period of growth for me as a designer, discovering my niche, and a true love for what I was creating.” He says he is “technology driven” on the one hand and “fascinated by the sinuous anatomy found in nature” on the other, but rather than seeing juxtaposition between the two, he considers them as complementary. “Harnessing technology with a digital workflow, I capitalize on the power and vast possibilities of design software, 3-D printing, and automated machining. These tools give me the freedom to push at the boundaries between art & design and ultimately bring my organic design visions into the real world.” Until very recently he created pieces for private commission exclusively, however he is now offering a curated selection of limited edition designs through the Una Malan showroom in West Hollywood, planning to expand to New York and other regions. The intricate leg detail seems to be something of a signature of his, as is “fluidity manifested in functional beauty”, an aesthetic sensibility that underpins all his designs.


Serous Bar Stool – It’s my signature piece and what set all of my designs in motion.

Dream project? Michael says his dream project has just materialized and is justly proud of it. “My “Serous” chairs were featured in the Oscar winning Marvel Studios film Black Panther! I was contacted by the studio while they were still filming and was commissioned to make 15 exclusive pieces for the Vibranium Technology Lab scenes. It was surreal to see my work on the big screen when I took my children to see the movie and to hear them say, “Look Dad, those are your chair designs!” The film won the 2019 Oscar for Best Production Design & Set Decoration this year too! Crazy to know that my work was part of that accomplishment, even if only a small part of it. It’s going to be hard to top that one for me.”

Pixel Bench

Love Table

Each new piece that came about was like my own form of poetry, telling a story of my past experiences teaching myself techniques and developing proprietary methods to manipulate surfaces in a multitude of ways.

AWOL Ripple

Transcend Table White






arsha Faulkner is a Jacksonville, FL based interior designer whose tag is Arbiter Elegantiarum (an arbiter of elegance). Her approach to the design process is intensely clientfocused and she describes it below: “I believe that every space has a story to tell and every client I work with is unique. I enjoy the stories that make people and places special. For me the design process starts with studying the space and the individual. I dedicate quite a bit of time to this phase as it sets the foundation for everything. I then layer in the essentials of a space: light, colour, scale, pattern, texture, old & new, vintage & antique, or one of a kind custom. My goal is to achieve a “collected and travelled” feel for every space and client. I am also constantly looking for an edge: pushing the boundaries and ultimately getting that unique “wow” moment when it all comes together. I love all that is individually bold and different for everyone.”


Marsha Faulkner is based in a part of the United States that is a huge magnet for a diverse and affluent demographic. Florida attracts people of vastly different backgrounds and being a designer there can be both inspirational and challenging. Marsha describes the state as a veritable melting pot where everyone is welcomed with open arms. “I am blessed to have lived most of my life in Florida. The weather is amazing year around and we see people coming and going all the time: a constant, interesting rotation. The people who call Florida home are very diverse which means that in turn our design aesthetic is also very diverse. A new project with someone who may be from a place I am unfamiliar with pushes me to learn about their culture and what makes it unique – that which my client would like to celebrate. It constantly stretches me as a designer. I have a vast library of books and many stamps in my passport in search of cultural inspiration. I find this energizing rather than daunting. Interior design is an art form and I feel that when a designer or an artist is not stretched in a good way their work can become monotonous.”


I enjoy the stories that make people and places special. My goal is to achieve a “collected and travelled� feel for every space and client.


Most significant project There have been many significant residential projects I have had the pleasure of working on, but this recent beach front home stands out in my mind. It was a very challenging lot (long and skinny) and our clients had a lot they wanted to accomplish with the home. We worked very closely with the architect to create an amazing third storey public space that includes a completely customized kitchen and a beautiful all glass wine cooler. The kitchen is made out of quarter sawn walnut veneers with hidden hardware. We partnered with ThinkGlass for a wonderful sculpted glass island that has colored LED lighting to “set the mood”. This was something the homeowner really wanted to do and has ended up being a real feature of the kitchen. Wine collecting is the owner’s hobby, so in order to celebrate that, the custom wine cooler became the “heart” of the room. Elegantly showing off part of the collection, each bottle floats on stainless steel pegs that are screwed in to a walnut veneer wall that continues from the kitchen and extends into the living area. There is a lovely wine tasting area behind the cooler with Platner stools and all the while maintaining the view of the ocean. Another really cool feature is the pivoting “wall” that acts as the door to the master bedroom. During the day this is completely open so that a visitor who is walking up to the third floor gets to enjoy the view of the ocean on the second floor where the bedroom is located. Normally the bedroom would block that view and the staircase would be in darkness but this feature opened up the house in a unique and thoughtful way. The house takes advantage of the sun all day long and even boasts a roof top bar and grille area! It was truly a fun project to work on and a huge success! A dream project “I am passionate about art. All kinds of art! So I think being able to design a home for an avid art collector with an extensive collection would be a dream. To be able to design a space specifically tailored to display or enhance each piece would not only be a challenge but a pinnacle moment in my career.”








icky Hurley, the founder of the eponymous New York City interior design firm, was born and raised in Santiago, Chile, in a cosmopolitan family of considerable Anglo-Irish pedigree. Hurley’s aesthetics were shaped early on by extensive travel and a finely tuned appreciation for art, antiques and European culture. His expertise of 18th and 19th century continental furniture and portraiture endow his interiors with a distinctive quality of timeless sophistication. He defines it thus: “Timelessness and sophistication are very important, yet not necessarily or inextricably linked to cost. A timeless piece can be as simple as a farmhouse table or a Saarinen table. Simplicity is also sophistication. Sophistication is knowing and appreciating the quality of things. Some people believe this means buying branded pieces, yet one can find just as nice a piece at a flea market in Paris.�



The kind of quality Hurley describes is becoming rarer – with the changes in contemporary furniture production and design, there are far fewer classic artisans today but definitely still some who maintain the best traditions of craftsmanship in the manner of the best cabinet makers of signed antique pieces. As for the latter, says Hurley, there will always be a market for those who appreciate one off special, quality pieces. And as younger generations become less and less familiar with signed antiques, so does the climate get more propitious for investing. Hurley counts some of the world’s most distinguished families as both personal friends and clients. His colorful background and upbringing have majorly influenced his creative approach to styling homes. “Growing up with my mother, my maternal grandparents and my great-grandmother in a house filled with history, tradition, family portraits, antiques, heirlooms and so


much beauty, I learned to associate these with the best aspects of design, namely, creating a house that has a soul and reflects the personality of its inhabitants.” “I would often accompany my grandfather to auctions, something that triggered my passion for antiques and collectibles. My mother was married to a renowned opera director/ production designer, PierLuigi Samaritani, who created amazing sets and worked with Pavarotti, Renata Scotto, Baryshnikov and Nureyev, among many others. PierLuigi was hugely talented and my mother was his costume design assistant. We would take weeks off school in Chile and accompany my mother for the rehearsals at the Scala of Milan, the New York Metropolitan, etc. It was absolutely incredible to see everything being made behind the scenes and interact with these legendary artists. As a young man,

Sophistication is knowing and appreciating the quality of things. Some people believe this means buying branded pieces, yet one can find just as nice a piece at a flea market in Paris.

PierLuigi worked with Lila de Nobili. His close friend was Gian Carlo Menotti. For me, as a young man, it was impossible to not be influenced aesthetically, surrounded by so much artistry and iconic talent at the highest international level.” If there is such a thing as a “Micky Hurley look”, it is, by design, imperceptible. This is because Hurley intends each interior to give the impression of being “undecorated.” “The interior should coalesce around a space that reflects the owners, their lives, their travels, their passions, their pastimes… I am just the invisible hand that helps take all of this and mix it in such a way that it reaches its maximum potential.” Still, there is an indelible hallmark of the Hurley designs that produces “a kind of layered patina of textures, patterns, colors, objects and so on, but I truly want each project to belong to its owner, not to me”.

Significant/featured projects “Every project is significant. This may sound cliché, but I learn from every one, as well as from both the successes and the mistakes. My most recent project is the home of our good friends, the Montagu family in Casa de Campo. The house has a wonderful energy and the history behind it is such fun. The owner’s aunt was Gloria Guinness and it was her house in Acapulco that inspired the Casa de Campo design. The Montagus even used the same architect, Marco Aldaco.” Dream Project “My dream project is my home in the French countryside on which I am making a start now. This is the home where my children will have their tree house, invite their friends to stay for summer vacations, where I will build my showroom, and where I plan to grow old with my wife surrounded by family and friends!”



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