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Living room furniture can be easily rearranged to accommodate entertaining. The ten-foot sofa might be the only thing that’s not going anywhere—the upholsterer had to finish it up in the condo because it didn’t fit in the freight elevator in one piece. See more photos in the gallery below.
“They didn’t want a home that looks like a showroom,” says Sasha Adler of the owners of a 4,700-square-foot condo in a Gold Coast high-rise. Good thing. Adler and Lauren Buxbaum, design directors at Nate Berkus Associates, create spaces that never feel locked into a single style.
Right after purchasing the condo, the young couple hired the design duo to come up with new wall colors and window treatments, to redo a bathroom, and to select furniture. Adler says it was exciting to share their design influences with the homeowners.
She and Buxbaum are known for juxtaposing vintage pieces and antiques—often charmingly aged pieces with cracked leather or chipping paint (“They’re ‘trust-us’ moments,” jokes Adler)—with furniture of their own design, much of it influenced by mid-
century French and Italian styles. The combination perfectly fits these clients—ardent travelers who had few requests other than that their eclectic art collection be integrated into the design.
In the many-windowed living room, Adler and Buxbaum’s pieces include a ten-foot sofa influenced by Milo Baughman’s classic Tuxedo sofa, a coffee table made from reclaimed Italian limestone, and a goatskin drum table with a green lacquer finish. Nearby are two Louis XVI chairs with original leather upholstery and a 1950s lamp by Jacques Adnet clad in hand-stitched Hermès leather. To top it off, the designers carefully edited the couple’s collection of art objects from their travels and arranged them in a 19th-century Napoleon III cabinet. “It’s an assembly of pieces from different countries, all different points in time—yet it feels very current,” says Adler.
For all the artful elegance of the condo’s furnishings, the home remains child-friendly (the couple has a two-year-old son). In the family room, Milo Baughman chairs were upholstered in a sturdy outdoor fabric, and Adler and Buxbaum’s fractured-resin coffee table has no sharp corners. “A kid could stand on top of it! It’s indestructible,” Adler says.
Following the custom at Nate Berkus Associates, all furnishings chosen by Adler and Buxbaum sat in a warehouse until other work on the condo, including the bathroom renovation, was finished. Then the family left home while the installation took place. “It’s something we picked up by Nate’s being on Oprah, where people want that television feel,” Adler says. “The room is done—raise the curtain!” A layered oasis awaits.
Photography: Bob Coscarelli
Styling: Cynthia McCullough