Home of the Year: Naturally Glamorous
A design team pools its talents to create a luxurious contemporary residence that honors its siteMountain Living: This home is such a fresh take on the classic mountain lodge. How did you achieve the look?
Charles Cunniffe: We created a mix of modern and “mountain” by combining clean lines with spare natural materials. We incorporated major amounts of glass to let a lot of light into the home, and the primary materials—stone and timber—speak to the mountains. The beams are 120-year-old recycled timbers from an old apple factory in Washington. By combining the solidness of the materials with the transparency of the glass, we created that play of new and traditional.
ML: After the house was built, it changed hands and the new owners asked you to make some changes. What direction did they give you?
CC: The house was perfect for them, but the interior finishes didn’t match their taste. They wanted something soft, elegant, soothing and more contemporary than what was there before.
ML: Now the architecture and interiors seem to have a very cohesive aesthetic.
Andrew Sheinman: Once our clients purchased the house, Francis and I became involved immediately. Charles collaborated closely with us to rework some of the interior architecture.
ML: What was your inspiration for the interior design?
AS: The owners wanted a contemporary design that felt glamorous, and we wanted to pay respect to the architecture by using clean lines and very luxurious materials.
ML: How did you make it feel glamorous but still appropriate for the mountains?
AS: I don’t think those two things are necessarily working in opposition. The mountains are glamorous. We used a lot of winter whites, organic shapes and only natural materials. There’s no reason that nature can’t be luxurious.
ML: It’s a large house with tall ceilings. How did you keep it feeling comfortable?
CC: We incorporated a lot of indirect lighting, which makes the spaces glow. The lights play off the materials of the walls so you get a warm sense of enclosure.
AS: We were also very careful about scale. By choosing large-scale furnishings, we were able to prevent the large living spaces from feeling cavernous.
ML: Many of those living spaces connect with one another. Did that influence your design?
AS: We didn’t want to create a theme for every room. Instead, the home has a few overall themes that make appearances in each space. One of those themes is stone and metal, so we chose alabaster-and-silver light fixtures for the dining room. Those metal accents are carried through the entire house, and they add a sense of glamour.
ML: You also used onyx throughout the house, from the bar in the great room to the bathrooms.
How do you keep such an opulent material feeling elegant instead of overdone?
CC: Less is more. Incorporating the onyx here and there throughout the house creates consistency. By keeping it simple, we were able to achieve elegance without fussiness.
AS: I think the natural variegation of the onyx relates to the home’s surroundings as well. It’s very luxurious, and it has an organic feel to it. The veins in the stone are reminiscent of the grain in wood; you can see nature in it.
ML: How does the home’s design enhance the views?
AS: We kept it simple and didn’t introduce too many materials so that your eyes are drawn to the outdoors. And we only used electronic shades on the windows. We felt that window treatments would have impinged upon the architecture.
ML: This home seems to take mountain style in a new direction. Do you think the mountain-home
aesthetic is changing?
CC: There are still a few people who want a log or timber house, but the majority of our clientele wants a contemporary take on mountain living. There’s nothing that says you’re in a mountain house more than viewing the mountains through a glass wall. The house doesn’t have to say “mountain” if the view does.
“We wanted to keep the house very calm and relaxing, so we didn’t use a lot of color,” designer Andrew Sheinman says. “The unity of surfaces creates an air of luxury.”
Color The designers took cues from the home’s architecture when selecting the color palette, which ranges from creamy beiges to chocolate browns. The beige and gray tones of the great room’s stonework inspired a rug in similar hues, while the dark stain of the antique beams is referenced in furnishings like the dining room table and chairs.
Pattern Sheinman and Nicdao highlighted the home’s custom furnishings by choosing solid fabrics within the purposefully limited color palette. “We were very focused on the form of each piece, and solid colors bring out the shapes,” Sheinman says.
Texture While the solid hues showcase the clean lines of the furnishings, rich,
textured textiles create a sense of balance. “The use of cashmere, wool, mohair and suede keeps the house feeling very warm and luxurious,” Sheinman says.
ARCHITECTURE Charles Cunniffe, Charles Cunniffe Architects, Aspen, CO, 970-925-5590, cunniffe.com INTERIOR DESIGN Andrew Sheinman and Francis Nicdao (with the help of Lori Beard Raymond, ASID, and Aaron Dussair), Pembrooke and Ives, New York, NY, 212-995-0555 GREAT ROOM SIDE TABLES Custom polished nickel side tables by Hudson Furniture Inc., New York, NY, 212-645-7800, hudsonfurnitureinc.com COFFEE TABLES Custom parchment coffee tables by Mary Kuzma Finishing, Brooklyn, NY, 718-388-8577 CUSTOM THROW PILLOWS Holland and Sherry, New York, NY, 212-355-6241, hollandandsherry.com RUG Custom Fusion Rug by Rug Art, New York, NY, 212-207-8211, rug-art.net FOYER CUSTOM CHANDELIER Marsia Holzer, New York, NY, 212-431-9343, marsiaholzer.com SCULPTURE (through the door) Guy Dill, 212 Gallery, Aspen, CO, 970-925-7117, 212gallery.com LOWER ENTERTAINMENT ROOM CHAISE Custom Trace Simple ST Germain Chaise by Ralph Pucci International, New York, NY, 212-633-0452, ralphpucci.net ARMCHAIRS Prive Armchairs by Cassina USA Inc., New York, NY, 212-245-2121, cassinausa.com CUSTOM COFFEE TABLE Jonathan Arnold Inc., Oceanside, NY, 212-245-2121 CUSTOM THROW PILLOWS Holland and Sherry, New York, NY, 212-355-6241, hollandandsherry.com EXTERIOR OUTDOOR FURNITURE 1966 Collection, Richard Schultz, New York, NY, 212-688-3620, richardschultz.com DINING ROOM CHANDELIER Custom Two-Tiered Cosmopolitan Chandelier by Urban Archaeology, New York, NY, 212-431-4646, urbanarchaeology.com DINING TABLE Custom Squares Base Dining Room Table with Acacia Top by Hudson Furniture Inc., New York, NY, 212-645-7800, hudsonfurnitureinc.com DINING CHAIRS Custom City Dining Chair with Horsehair Upholstery by Holly Hunt, New York, NY, 212-891-2500, hudsonfurnitureinc.com RUG Custom Hand Knotted Tibetan Rug, Beauvais Carpets, New York, NY, 212-688-2265, beauvaiscarpets.com KITCHEN BAR STOOLS Skipping Bar Stools by Karim Rashid, DDC Domus Design Collection, New York, NY, 212-685-0800, ddcnyc.com GREAT ROOM BAR COUNTERS Honey Onyx, Porcelli Marmi sas, Pietrasanta, LU, Italy, +39 0584 793866 /72064 CHANDELIER Custom Crystal McAstor Chandelier, Wired Custom Lighting, New York, NY, 212-446-6025, wired-designs.com SCULPTURE Botero Sculpture POWDER ROOM Single Tier Chandelier with Czeck Crystals, Chameleon Fine Lighting, New York, NY, 212-355-6300, chameleon59.com WALLS & VANITY Honey Onyx, Porcelli Marmi sas, Pietrasanta, LU, Italy, +39 0584 793866/72064 MASTER BATHROOM SCONCE Custom Evasion 2 Arm Wall Sconce by Jean De Merry, New York, NY, 212-715-0646, jeandemerry.com CHAIR Custom Ingot Chair, Lorin Marsh, New York, NY, 212-759-8700, lorinmarsh.com WALLS & COUNTER White Pearl Onyx, Porcelli Marmi sas, Pietrasanta, LU, Italy, +39 0584 793866/72064 GUEST MASTER BEDROOM BENCH Boxcar Bench, Lorin Marsh, New York, NY, 212-759-8700, lorinmarsh.com CHANDELIER Oh Mei Ma Chandelier, Ingo Maurer, New York, NY, 212-965-8817, ingo-maurer.com CUSTOM DRESSER Ian Ingersoll, West Cornwall, CT, 860-672-6334, ingersoll.com CARPET Custom Hand Knotted Striped Carpet, Stark Carpet, New York, NY, 212-752-9000, starkcarpet.com