Friday, March 11, 2011

Gerard Butler's Old-World Style Manhattan Loft

Old-World in New York

In May, 2010, just when as were admiring how well our deconstruct-to-the-structure-and-burlap armchair looked next to our industrial shelving (which does look fabulous, by the way), Architectural Digest profiled Gerard Butler's Chelsea loft in May, 2010, causing the interior design world to sit up in our Belgian linen-covered bergères and take notice. Designed by movie set designer Elvis Restaino, this 3,300 square-foot, two-story loft seems to incorporate just about every design style (save Contemporary Zen), with spectacular results! When asked to describe the loft's style, Butler offered, "I guess I would describe the apartment as Bohemian old-world rustic château with a taste of baroque."

Located on the sixth and seventh floor of an abandoned warehouse, the loft was mostly white and uninspiring, broken up into several small rooms. Butler, however, saw the tall ceilings with oversized arched windows, and realized its potential. His architect, Alexander Gorlin, gutted the apartment for a fresh start, leaving only two support beams. With his hiring of set designer Restaino, Butler found a kindred design soul, and the two developed the loft's "fanciful aesthestic" over four-years' time.

Below is the entryway. The mahogany double doors were salvaged from a Brooklyn brownstone. The coin wall ornament, to the right of the window, was removed from a demolition in Ohio. The plaster surrounding the walls were colored and textured to highlight the coin. The ceiling mural was painted on squares of 1940s movie poster paper, covered in plexiglass, then affixed with decorative buttons. The archway and columns were made from chicken wire and colored plaster, which were color matched with real limestone sculpted lions installed in the arch.

Says Restaino, "You can't compare paint with colored plaster. There is so much more texture and depth to colored plaster. It gives the wall life."
Another view of the entryway during the design phase.

The theatre room. The columns are from India; the wooden arch support was salvaged from a cathedral in the Bronx; the stone lion's head came from an old library. The sofa and ottoman are from ABC Carpet & Home. The previously-white ceiling beams were repainted an aged, wood-grain brown, a much more cost-effective process than chemically-removing or sandblasting paint.

The kitchen cabinets and backsplash were fashioned from leftover reclaimed flooring material.

A closer view of the backsplash and the sink. Love that Celtic motif on the sink apron! The backsplash looks to be made from colored and textured plaster-covered tiles and wood pieces.

Both elegant and rustic -- three mismatched crystal chandeliers suspended over a medieval-style dining table.

Butler's bedroom.

Butler, who maintains two other homes, a Spanish-style house in the Hollywood Hills and a flat in London, has plans to renovate the loft's second floor and adjoining rooftop terrace. "Whenever I open that huge door, I just think how lucky I am," he says. "Those walls that surround you in the entrance hall and the huge chandelier right in front of you and this beautiful fresco above you -- you realize you're somewhere that's completely original."


1 comment:

  1. Gorgeous. If I win the lottery I am definitely going to pinch a few ideas.Great taste and as classy as the man himself.
    Joan (hug) xxx