A favourite project of mine is still Koji. The owner was young and adventurous and open to us experimenting with innovative materials to create something really unique. His collection of Bentley cars, all in black and red, provided some inspiration. He wanted a stronger, masculine interior style rather than what he considered to be a “safe look”.
The best example of this is in the master cabin where we used red and black, with touches of grey and taupe, to smooth out the contrasting tones and give some harmony to the atmosphere. The floor is a custom-made eel leather. The very thin eel leather panels came from Vietnam but were backed with a special material by our craftsman in Italy to give strength to the leather, making it suitable for underfoot.
The headboard is a focal point in the stateroom. I wanted something that was a piece of art in itself. The felt sculpture was designed by Luxury Projects but created by my friend Dianne Schepers, of Pure Felt. The custom-made bedside lamps, with their brushed steel base and red resin shade, act like projectors, giving the headboard a three-dimensional effect.
We used a lot of gloss surfaces, inspired by the Bentley black gloss, but I wanted to contrast this with softer textures. The bedside cabinets and chest of drawers were fronted with a custom grey laser cut leather by Foglizzo, the sofa was upholstered in a richly textured fabric from J Robert Scott, and on the bed we used a unique 100 per cent cashmere bedspread by Kohro, which is woven in double height.
In the en suite bathroom, we experimented for the first time with cocciopesto, an ancient technique used by the Romans for the floors in noble houses and thermal baths. Working with Tarsie Vivendi, we created a beautiful light grey sink top, walls and floor, inlaid with red and black accents that matched the whole décor scheme of the cabin, tying everything together.