Upper East Side – Baccarat Home Hotel by Christina Markham
Set within Sydney’s eastern suburb of Bellevue Hill, through a stately, three-storey family home Christina Markham has manifested an elegant slice of New York opulence.
The brief was given by well-travelled clients, who were inspired by the Baccarat Hotel in New York – in particular the hotel’s blending of classic and contemporary design elements. Embarking on the project with the first site visit in 2015, lead architect and interior designer Christina Markham saw the potential to bring this marriage of old and new to the residence.
From the outset, the cosmopolitan reference is present. A black steel and glass doorway gives way to a sweeping space, with generous proportions akin to the Baccarat Hotel lobby. As they do in the lobby, the crisp and distinctive lines of doors, floors, stairs and mezzanine travel up and down the scene, framing spaces and creating a sleek order. These lines continue into the ground floor living room, where furniture sits in sedate solidarity with surfaces while the glass and steel frame doors open out to a private courtyard, sheltered by towering fiddle leaf figs.
The kitchen is a display of material luxury. A spectacular light fitting is suspended in the centre of the room, above the Poliform Artex kitchen island countertop in granite. The synergy of these two features is palpable. The room is anchored by Poliform Artex cabinetry, finished in black elm and featuring smoke reflective glass doors. Not only does this cabinetry balance the space, framing lush garden outlooks in the process, it also provides for a high-performance kitchen, designed with attention to detail and a quality finish.
A muted palette of dark tones is carried confidently throughout the home. A subdued glow filters through the translucent curtains in the loungeroom and is reflected from furniture. Off the master bedroom, a Poliform Senzafine walk in wardrobe, finished in cenere oak, piombo metal and elefante techno leather, is at once an elegant display and a functional space. Possessing Poliform’s signature characteristics of technical excellence, quality materials and a luxury finish, the design of the wardrobe is minimal and distinctive. Its adaptable, modular design has been tailored to the space, serving the particular needs of its users. With its Ego doors in transparent reflecting glass, the visual effect of the wardrobe is that of a reliquary, with a sense of grandeur befitting a shopfront on Fifth Avenue.
This project was not to be rushed, spanning four-and-a-half years before completion. The duration of this work perhaps speaks to the timelessness of the finished space – a calm and commanding home, transportive in concept and grounding in materiality.