The Ultimate Home Tour: Entryway

Peter Marino does not believe in buying off the rack, or at least not off the showroom floor. "I don’t walk furniture showrooms. I would much rather design something myself," says the New York–based architect. "I like to involve different artists when I design things for a room. The variety of input creates something completely different. Nearly everything in this room has been designed from scratch."

The room in question—a 900-square-foot entryway-cum-gallery in a Palm Beach, Fla., house owned by a retired couple from New York—reflects Marino’s taste for the one-of-a-kind. Indeed, the house itself, with its Asian-influenced design, is unique along the coast of Palm Beach, which is populated by Italianate mansions. "The recipe here is modern architecture plus Asian spices. You have to balance the yin and the yang or you end up with a home that looks like a Chinese restaurant," he jokes.

After entering the house through a set of bronze doors, which Marino imbued with various textures including one that resembles reeds, you immediately look out to the ocean. To the right are a mirror and an 18th-century Italian chest made of ebonized walnut inlaid with mother-of-pearl and brass. To the left is a fireplace and chairs. "I like entryways with fireplaces. It makes you feel warm right away," says Marino. "And since the house is more than 10,000 square feet, you often find yourself waiting for people." Hence the chairs, which are accented with cushions made from Japanese silk.

Although the homeowners possess a large collection of art that includes several paintings, Marino did not place any of them in the gallery. "I wanted to start off calm. This is a space you pass through quickly—not a great place to contemplate a work of art," he explains. "Instead, you see elements that you find throughout the house: bronze, beige, stone. It’s very much the table of contents." The walls may be bare, but they have been covered with a dozen coats of lacquer.

Marino collaborated with French craftswoman Claude Lalanne on a pair of ginkgo-leaf bronze benches, and with Pennsylvania ceramist Paula Winokur on the tiles inside the French-limestone fireplace. Per Marino’s request, the tiles have a spongelike texture that, he says, recalls the sea. Another oceanic tie-in is the carpet, which Marino designed to look and feel like sand.

"It’s difficult to categorize the style of a room like this. I just call it international good taste," says Marino. "It’s so versatile; it could be anywhere in the world."

Peter Marino Architect
212.752.5444
www.petermarinoarchitect.com

Photo by Darlene Halaby
A stunning transformation brings out a Southern California property’s coastal side...
Photo by Leonardo Finotti
In Brazil’s most populous city, a high-rise home provides a chic and spacious sanctuary for its art...
Photos by Robert Canfield; Roger Davies; Doug Burke; Eric van den Brulle
If one room in the house best captures the spirit of its inhabitants, it is the kitchen...
At age 16, Kelly Hoppen designed a friend’s kitchen, and that was the start of her London practice...
Photo by Rebecca Lievre
Perennial delights from floral designer Jeff Leatham...
The recently opened Gubi flagship is a uniquely material world...
Classic finishes and nature-inspired designs soak the bathroom in style...
Photo by Jamie McGregor Smith
LONDON The Connaught Formerly a walk-in humidor, the brass bar in the distinguished hotel’s...
Pure instinct led Fleur Bresler to create one of the country’s foremost collections of wood art...
Photo courtesy of Claudiu Voichin
The Chicago Landmark is located north of downtown and just a block from the shore of Lake Michigan…