Thursday, January 20, 2011

San Simeon: Casa Del Sol

San Simeon was built as a hilltop village, not as a single mansion. While the main house, Casa Grande (which I've been featuring), is surely one of the largest houses in California, 3 other main guest houses dot the hilltop compound.The main guest house with the most spectacular views (none of them are anything to scoff at) is the Casa Del Sol (or Cottage 'C'), so named because it faced the sunset. These cottages were constructed and finished first as the main house took years to near completion. Hearst and his family chose this guesthouse as their first hilltop residence. I love these metal screens at the front doors.
The details rival that of the main house. The design is Spanish Revival, concentrating on architecture in southern Spain from the Renaissance and baroque periods; It's a glorious mish-mash.
The plan of all of the cottages is a U shape with a courtyard entry so that the views are out towards the mountains and ocean. This ancient 'sculpture' (the polite word for it) lies between the 2 doors into the entryway. Similar statuary dots the estate. Some of the guest rooms had private entries. I love these fretwork doors!
The main sitting room is definitely grand, if not comfortable and filled with Spanish antiques.The tile floors were probably great on a hot day. Now the buildings all have air conditioning.The decorative and reclaimed ceilings continue from the main house in all of the rooms of the guest cottages; they really steal the show!Julia ingeniusly selected uplight chandliers to draw attention to the ceilings. I love the way the light reflects off the gilding.
The rooms are decorated as if inhabited by guests with suitcases and clothing.I thought the fabric curtaining behind the bed was a nice soft touch in these relatively cold rooms.The main guest bedroom deviates from the yellow color scheme and is much cosier. The brilliant views and windows make up for the dark color. I loved these recessed light fixtures, much prettier than a boring,typical can.
Of course, we can't forget that the emphasis here is really on the views. You can't beat them!
As with all of my San Simeon posts, written permission was kindly granted to post my interior photos of the estate on this blog only. Please respect that and do not copy. Thanks!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


In honor of the B52's concert I attended tonight (and because I'm too tired for a design post), attached here are 2 of their hit songs which were the last 2 they performed tonight at the 930 club. Enjoy!

Back to our regularly scheduled programing tomorrow!

Finally a semblance of tech savviness....

For months I've been receiving emails from people asking 'How do I follow you'? Well, I'll admit I never looked into it but now have FINALLY figured out the system! To follow ArchitectDesign, you can now click on the networked blogs link seen right here on my sidebar.
Happy Reading!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

DCOTA winter market

I'm back from my whirlwind adventure to speak on the Elle Decor panel 'Redesigning Design' at the DCOTA winter market. First, I just have to say that DCOTA is the most beautiful design center I have ever seen; spacious and light filled, it's a pleasure to spend time there.
Jennifer and I with Empress of the Eye
Unfortunately due to the weather, the moderator, Allison Mezzafonte and 2 of the panelists, Habitually Chic & Little Augury were unable to attend. We soldiered on however and Ellen Rubin, executive director of brand development for Elle Decor, took on the role of moderator. The Peak of Chic, Velvet & Linen and I had a great time discussing how we feel the internet has impacted the design world and how our blogs have impacted our lives and careers. I think the biggest impact for us all are the friendships our blogs have made. As Brooke said in the discussion, it had traditionally been so hard to make friends as passionate about design before our blogs; sentiments echoed by both Jennifer and myself. Nearly everytime one of us has met a fellow blogger the first thing we say is "I feel like I already know you!".
with Jennifer and Lynda Quintero-Davids
Other subjects we hit upon included different social media outlets (facebook, twitter, blogger), their pros and cons and how we utilize them. Of the three of us, we don't utilize twitter but do have a presence on facebook. We felt there was only so much time in the day and we try to concentrate on our blogs.
Advertising was another subject we hit upon and our conclusion was that blogs maybe can't make one much money, but the opportunities they have provided the 3 of us outweigh any financial incentives ( I mean, Elle Decor asked us to speak at a conference; hello, thats amazing!). It was so great to meet fellow bloggers (Hello Empress of the eye and Focal Point!) and to help contribute to the design dialogue that Elle Decor continues to foster by continually reaching out to the blogging community. Thank you so much for including me and keep up the good work Elle Decor!