Palm Beach Chic

Just in time for the weekend, we can all take a vicarious visit to that tropical bastion of sunny style in Jennifer Ash Rudick’s lush new book Palm Beach Chic! Within its pages of four hundred beautiful color photos by Jessica Klewicki Glynn, we gain entrée to the architecture, interiors and gardens of not only classic grand dames estates but also stylish apartments, glamorous post modern houses and bohemian cottages. For such a tiny barrier island, Palm Beach offers a big dose of style. Welcome to a privileged peek behind the hedges.

Palm Beach Chic cover

Perhaps no other structure is more associated with timeless Palm Beach splendor than Villa Artemis. Originally built in 1916 for the Guest family by architect F. Burrall Hoffman, who also designed Villa Vizcaya, it has since been in the Rosenthal/Horvitz family for more than 50 years.

Palm Beach Chic Villa ArtemisCurrent residents Jane and Michael Horvitz recently undertook a renovation to update the property with comfort and livability. Working with architects Ferguson & Shamamian, garden designer Mario Nievera and interior designer David Kleinberg, they refreshed the estate while maintaining a healthy respect for its legacy.

Palm Beach Chic Villa Artemis door

A newer structure commissioned with the grandeur of Addison Mizner’s mansions in mind is Terry Allen Kramer’s La Follia. Completed in 1995, the 43,000 square foot Italian Renaissance style compound, designed by architect Jeff Smith, is of a scale that hadn’t been seen in Palm Beach for decades.

Palm Beach chic La Follia terrace

Kramer’s vision for grand indoor/outdoor living included requests for lots of loggias and terraces and light filled interiors. Interior designer Pauline Pitt and garden designer Mario Nievera completed her dream team and were given 22 months to complete the project. My favorite room has to be this Elsie de Wolfe style trellis room with Palladian style doors opening onto the ocean.

Palm Beach chic La Follia trellis roomWhile the mansions may be symbolic of Palm Beach, the cottages are chock full of charm and style. Architect Howard Major was responsible for many prominent Palm Beach mansions but he also built this enchanting “intimate cluster” of six cottages now known as Major Alley. Here the human scale and personality of his tropical Georgian style shines. I would look forward to going to work every day in the beguiling office below, hung with banana leaf paper, overlooking a courtyard pool.

Palm Beach chic Major Alley

In Jean Pearman’s Major Alley cottage, she and designer Mimi Kemble chose a glowing cantaloupe glaze for the walls, the perfect backdrop for the neutral upholstery and the owner’s antiques.

Palm Beach Chic cottage Lilly Pulitzer’s daughter Liza Pulitzer Calhoun has translated her mother’s colorful aesthetic into her own with a more ethnic bohemian vibe. Her easy and alluring compound of two connected cottages carries on the “relaxed Pulitzer legacy.” This fun bar is just swimming with tropical appeal.

Palm Beach chic Liza Pulitzer

An outdoor living room connects main house and guest house with colorful flair.

Pam Beach Chic Pulitzer terraceEverything Harry and Laura Slatkin touch is singularly stylish. So it’s no surprise that their Palm Beach house is the epitome of understated chic. Designed for relaxing and family vacations, it effortlessly bridges the gap between contemporary and timeless style.

Palm Beach Chic Slatkin house

Harry and Laura both love to entertain and frequently plan their beautiful table settings together. Below, lunch on the terrace features pieces from their collection of blue and white with hibiscus blossoms from the garden.

Palm Beach Chic Slatkin table

And Laura transformed the master bathroom into a pink Palm Beach paradise with a profusion of Porthault.

Palm Beach Chic Slatkin bath

As Lars Bolander says, “There are no rules in design. It’s fantasy and how you put it together.” His West Palm Beach property, Bamboo Hill, is a testament to his sophisticated seasoned eye and ability to mix and match high and low and all styles and periods for a fantastic and unique Palm Beach Chic.

Palm Beach Chic Lars BolanderThe mix of art alone is worth a look. Author Rudick expresses it well, “It’s hard to determine where Swedish designer Lars Bolander’s passion ends and his obsession begins.”

Palm Beach Chic Bolander art

“Scandinavians are always looking for light,” Bolander explains, so the outdoor spaces are as considered as the ones inside. With Spanish sofas, Indian textiles and rugs from Marrakech, Worth Avenue seems worlds away.

Palm Beach Chic Bolander terrace

Kathy and Billy Rayner’s house represents a magical metamorphosis of non-descript ranch into outpost of chic wanderlust. Peter Marino performed the transformation, including exotic wall treatments in the library below

Palm Beach chic Rayner house

and the design of a Turkish pavilion inspired by Billy’s sketches of Topkapi palace – a guest room below.

Palm Beach chic Rayner guest room

Even the landscape, designed by garden designer Denis Lamarsh references such exotic locations as Jardin Majorelle in Marrakech.

Palm Beach chic Rayner garden and pool

And while Palm Beach Chic features houses ranging from mansions to cottages, it also includes several apartments like the colorful upbeat West Palm pad of designer Meg Braff. With a penchant for color and pattern, she has created a cheerful and stylish getaway for her busy brood.

Palm Beach Chic Meg Braff

After touring the twenty-five uniquely alluring homes featured in Palm Beach Chic, you’ll feel like you’ve had a very stylish vacation!


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9 Responses to Palm Beach Chic

  1. Thank you for sharing this! I am struck by how much classical proportions are used in the architecture. I hope we see more of this in Southwest Florida where I live! We’re having a boom of construction with coastal contemporary architectural and decorating styles that focus more on the ocean than creating unique stories within rooms, too.

  2. AJFlamingo says:

    So thrilled to see Lars Bolander featured here! My hubby has worked for him all over the world. He’s a wonderful man! I worked for his equally-talented wife, Nadine Kalachnikoff as a PA. Undoubtedly, the best days of my life!

  3. AJFlamingo says:

    i cannot wait to buy this book to add to our vast collection of interior design books. Thanks so much for introducing us to it. Your blog is my absolute fave!

  4. Dean Farris says:

    I like your review of the book!
    I concur with Kristin, the west coast of Florida (Naples) needs more classical architecture and less of the “Coastal Contemporary” which is looking all the same and very commercial- is it a bank, a restaurant, or a house? Kristin, check out the Martin residence at 5th Avenue and Gulf Shore Blvd S. It’s a beauty!
    Dean

  5. franki says:

    Oh, isn’t this wonderful!!! We absolutely adore Palm Beach…was thrilled to go to the “Traditional Home Design House” there…The Flagler Mansion, etc. The Villa Vizcaya is not to be missed. Your coverage is just exceptional!! franki

  6. Tania Vartan says:

    wonderful…it all looks just great and I know them all!

  7. Karena says:

    A smashing review Stacey!
    The author has given us a timeless portrayal of Palm Beach Chic!!
    From the cottages to the estates to the lush gardens these properties are all stunning and memorable!

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena

  8. It’s on my book list now!… I adore Laura Slatkin’s frothy pink bathroom! Jenny

  9. beautiful – and timely – have you seen richard’s new palm beach collection for century ;0)

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