Design studio Elicyon is known for its harmonious layering of materials, but when redesigning this apartment, one of the best homes in the world, textures and finishes were combined with the specific aim of creating a totally relaxing ambiance. .
As founder and director Charu Gandhi explains, “We always start a project by asking our clients what their favorite places are, but it’s not to replicate those interiors. Rather, it is about recreating what a special space makes a person feel.
In this case, the guests, a couple with young children, fondly recalled the feeling of relaxation that accompanied their visits to the Hotel George V in Paris. For their apartment, located in a 19th-century building overlooking Hyde Park, Charu and Elicyon design partner Holly Beazley paid homage to the hotel’s luxurious Parisian finishes.
A sense of calm is evident in multiple ways in this home. For Holly, bespoke finishes and handcrafted details were key to creating the desired atmosphere. “No detail has been overlooked, from the entrance with its polished plaster walls to the layers of tactile materials in the living areas and bespoke pieces in more private areas such as the bedrooms,” she says.
From the start, Holly and Charu took care to harmonize the luxury details with how the clients wanted to use the space. For example, since the family has another apartment on the same floor, the kitchen is more of a part-time “vacation home” space, while the larger neighbor is used to prepare full meals. One of the ideas for the kitchen was to imbue the smaller space with a different character, using onyx for the worktops and giving the cabinets a liquid metal finish, while the drawers mimic the stingray.
On the other hand, the blind is in a plain, almost rustic linen. “We kept the window dressing simple, to let the richer materials shine through,” adds Charu.
In all spaces there is an interplay between absolute luxury and quieter, patternless areas. “When you want to create an atmosphere, you also need quiet moments,” says Charu. “This is where you pause and absorb the general vibe.”
The dual living area features slim brass fittings, polished surfaces and deep rugs, and is divided into a sociable side and a TV viewing area.
The team also pushed the boundaries of practical design, most notably with the undulating brass and crystal chandelier hanging in the living space, one of their boldest living room ideas.
At one point, hanging this spectacular light in its listed frame seemed like an impossible challenge. “But we found a way to create a plaster ‘plate’ that fits seamlessly and integrated into the ceiling,” says Charu.
The chandelier also forms a stunning focal point from the mezzanine above. With meticulous attention to detail, the luster of the brass chandelier is echoed in the furniture fittings and frames around the aged mirror panels. All finishes have a neat aesthetic.
The chandelier makes a stunning statement, but throughout the apartment there is a lovely interplay of total luxury and quieter, patternless spaces.
This mezzanine level accommodates a workspace. Home office ideas include stylish shelving echoing Art Deco details on the balcony.
In the master bedroom, bedroom ideas include wardrobe doors that sparkle with delicate oriental designs. “The temptation with a smaller space is to treat it simply, but here we’ve gone in the opposite direction, adding lots of layers and details to give a homey, cozy feel,” says Holly. “Layers of suede, faux stingray and silk give this bedroom a real princess and polka dot vibe, where texture is everything.” The console conceals a television, while its mirrored surface adds to the feeling of space.
Elicyon worked side-by-side with artisans, including Aiveen Daly, to create engaging pieces for every space. “It was nice to have talented designers throughout this project and the clients really appreciate the handmade elements,” adds Holly. “Working with artisans has been a highlight of this project.”
The influence of the Hotel George V in Paris is most evident in the bathroom, where bathroom ideas include the combination of cloudy onyx slabs with brassware finished in rose gold. “This cloudy onyx has beautiful, almost blushing undertones,” says Holly. “Space is everything you want a bathroom to be.”
Interior decorator/ Elicyon
Photography/ Michael Sinclair
Text/ Jo Leevers