I am so excited for this. Finally…a monograph on the work of the late, great David Collins. For one of the greatest designers of our time, this is a nice way to honor his memory.
I know, I’m a bit late to the table. But happy new years anyway! I got back to chilly, smoggy Hong Kong a few days ago from my amazing trip to South Africa. If you’ve never been then I highly recommend you do. Plus, Cape Town is World Design Capital this year, so no better time to go really. I won’t bore you with all the details, but I did spend Xmas day here…
I booked us a table for lunch at the Delaire Graff winery months ago, and I’m so glad I did. The food, wine and the service were just as amazing as that view. The winery, which is nestled in a valley and surrounded by vineyards in Stellenbosch (not quite an hour from Cape Town), is truly spectacular. And the interiors were designed by the late, great David Collins (yes, that was definitely a deciding factor).
But enough of my travel tales, I have news to share.
I have thought long and hard about how to develop this blog from what it started out as very innocently in 2006. I may well be insane, but I have decided nonetheless to publish a magazine. I will give you more details as we get closer to the publication date (hopefully within the next few months), but I can tell you it will be unlike any other design magazine on the market at the moment.
I would love to hear from readers, especially those of you in Asia, and what you might like to see and read, and we will do our best to incorporate that into the format we are working on currently.
I would like to thank those of you who have sent submission material to us for publication on the blog, and encourage you to continue to do so for publication in our magazine.
So keep your fingers crossed for me, and be patient if I post even less regularly as we put together our inaugural issue.
I wish all of you the very best for 2014. I have a good feeling about this year!
Photograph by Richard Powers, care of David Collins Studio
Larusmiani was founded in 1922 and has become world renowned for fine tailoring and luxurious textiles, particularly unusual blends like cotton / linen with vicuna, silk or cashmere. The company’s textiles have been used by Collins throughout the interior and complimented with more sumptuous finishes such as marble and leather in a palette of ivory, parchment and shades of the signature Larusmiani blue.
Elements of the design, particularly the furniture, has been clearly influenced by the circa 1950’s building that houses the boutique. Ever present are the details that Collins is known for – grosgrain ribbon trims and contrasting saddle stitching to name a few. Of the overall design, David Collins comments, “My inspiration for the space is a reflection of the quality and attention to detail that is the hallmark of Larusmiani”.
The 3-story boutique which will house the company’s men’s and women’s wear collections will also feature a carefully curated collection of time pieces, books and cutting edge technology. Adding to the exclusivity of the environment there is a marble fireplace in the salon, each floor has a private terrace, the dressing rooms were designed as small living rooms (some of which have bathrooms!) and the lifts are lined with velvet. Così elegante!
You could be mistaken for thinking the title of this post is a reference to Australia, and the famous song by Icehouse of the same title (the Aussies out there will know what I’m talking about). But no, I’m actually talking about South Africa. With the World Cup action coming to an end, and recently meeting another lovely couple from here, my feet are itching and the travel bug is back. Any excuse to travel to this amazing place would do, like a wedding for example (hint, hint!)…kidding. But seriously, if I do make it to South Africa this place will be on my list of places to visit. Delaire Graff, a a short drive from Cape Town, is a stunning estate which has recently been designed by David Collins Studio. The estate is home to not just a winery, but a restaurant and boutique hotel as well. As you can see from above the surrounding landscape is breathtaking, so if the food and wine are anywhere near as good as this (and the interiors – check out the website for more pics!) I’m sure its heavenly!
The MahaNakhon, when completed in 2013, will be an iconic landmark in the Bangkok skyline. The complex will consist of private residences by Ritz Carlton, a retail complex, and the new Bangkok Edition Hotel by Ian Schrager, operated by Marriott.
The MahaNakhon Pavillion, a stunning building in it’s own right (seen below), will house the sales offices of the Ritz Carlton Residences and a Sales Pavillion which David Collins Studio has designed. I’m excited to be able to share these just released photos of thepavillion, which were designed in a style which Mr Collins himself has termed ‘minimalist luxury’.
Collins has used his trademark touch of 20th century inspired glamour and a seriously cool colour palette that seems perfect for Bangkok. And I have to say, I’m so excited to see this style being adopted in Asia.
Oh, and, as if all that wasn’t already enough, there is a Dean & Deluca cafe in the ground floor. Seriously yummy. I wish they’d open one in Hong Kong!
All photographs by Richard Powers Photography, courtesy of David Collins Studio.
Unveiled in August ’09, the Limewood is a quintessential English Country House Hotel set in a National Park, a little under 2hrs southwest of London. The architecture is classic Georgian, and the interiors are just sublime.
Collins has used his signature blend of elegance to create a relaxed but luxe ambiance. The soft muted colour palettes blend in with the surrounding landscape. Local materials such as ash and stone are skillfully blended with silk wallcoverings and dip-dyed curtains and another of Collin’s signature touches – a mix of antique and bespoke furniture and lighting.
Each of the sixteen guest rooms are a different configuration and have been decorated individually. There are four different drawing rooms to relax in, a bar, a courtyard garden, and if all this is not enough, there are two dining rooms to chose from, one with a Michelin star chef! And that’s not even mentioning the stunning landscape…
Says Mr Collins himself of the project: “Rarely do designers meet clients who are prepared to create something of quality, integrity, and style. We were fortunate in being able to bring our aesthetic to the interior of Lime Wood working within a framework of a re-imagined 18 th Century home but updating it and reinventing the so-called English Country Style. We have taken a simple subtle palette of colours, materials and textures and integrated them into the building and importantly the landscape to create something special that will evolve with time and use”.
But don’t take our words for it…check out these lovely images – or treat yourself to a weekend away if you are in the area!
Two different bathrooms
One of the Drawing Rooms
At the risk of boring you all to death with yet another post about David Collins and Spanish Architectural Digest….I’ll put a slightly different spin on this one. Suffice to say though, I got my fix of both this month. My heart almost stopped when I saw the spread on the latest incarnation of Collins’ London abode. Okay, so back to the spin. The apartment, as expected, has a fabulous assortment of art. One piece in particular seemed quite familiar and then I realised that the same piece is in another of my all time favorite apartments, the Boston residence of designer Frank Roop. The piece I’m referring to is “La Folie” by photographer Didier Massard. There is something a little romantic, and also a little eerie about it – like most of his work. A quick browse through his website and I’m in love!
David Collins’ home photographed by Ricardo Labougle for AD España December 2009.
Frank Roop’s Boston apartment photographed by Eric Roth for Elle Decor November 2007.
Didier Massard’s latest book was released late last year and is available on Amazon. It’s definitely going on my wish list – along with a few of his photographs!
I might just have to treat myself and stay here when I get back to London again….which hopefully won’t be too far away.
Speaking of visiting London…I noticed that the ultra-luxe firm Candy & Candy have added a design school to their list of offerings. They are promising to reveal all in a 5-day intensive class for a group of 10 at a time. So if you are interested in a career in luxury interior design, this might be of interest to you. And…you might just meet me there 😉
For fans of designer David Collins – here is a sneak peek of his own London home!
If you haven’t checked out the site “Luxury Culture” – do so now. It’s full of great articles about design, art, travel, fashion (including an article about Mr Collins himself) and much, much more.