From an Architectural Digest article (April 3, 2020):
Whimsical, wild, and wacky are but a few words that most aptly describe Bill Bensley’s unique design aesthetic and the exceptional hotels born from it. Credited with upping the ante on Southeast Asia’s hospitality design, he is one of the most intriguing artists in the field today.
Originally from California, Bill has called Asia home since 1984 when he lived in Singapore and Hong Kong before moving to Bangkok and setting up Bensley, a full-service hospitality design atelier made up of architects, landscape architects, interior designers, and artists.
“I can take you around the house and say, ‘The base of this column exists at Capella Ubud, and the top of this bathroom door is Four Seasons Chiang Mai, and this lantern is the prototype for all the lamps that we used at Four Seasons Koh Samui.’ There are still remnants of pieces here from probably 100 different projects,” says Bensley.
From an Architectural Digest online article (March 14, 2020):
“Tangier is the crossroads of so many civilizations,” says AD100 talent Frank de Biasi of the evocative Moroccan port city that he and his partner, the multifaceted designer Gene Meyer, have made their home. “There’s a central energy here,” he explains, “where the Atlantic meets the Mediterranean, where Europe meets Africa. It’s a psychic point like no other place.”
Many of the traditional houses here, however, have a claustrophobic lack of light, so when the couple found a ruinous place on a little open square, with exposures on three sides, they knew they could make it their own. Their renovation ultimately took four years as they rebuilt paper-thin walls, replaced a life-threateningly vertiginous staircase with one inspired by the Old Fort Bay clubhouse in the Bahamas, and installed a light-well based on one de Biasi had seen in India and such mod cons as under-floor heating.
Today we visit Fayetteville, Arkansas to tour a tiny house capable of booming sound. When Asha Mevlana isn’t on tour with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, she hosts neighborhood concerts from her compact custom home. Situated between her living quarters and the trailer devoted to her instruments, Asha’s porch has enough room for performers to fill the street with music, courtesy of the built-in, wall-sized outdoor amplifier. The innovations don’t end there, though, as living in a tiny house presents plenty of design challenges to overcome. Watch and learn about the ins and outs of this peculiar property on today’s episode of Unique Spaces.
On this episode of Unique Spaces, Architectural Digest brings you inside an unconventionally beautiful home in Phoenix, Arizona built out of a repurposed grain silo. Designer Christoph Kaiser takes us on a tour of the property he called home for 18 months, highlighting the array of bespoke elements that went into making the circular enclave.
“If one imagines a list of the greatest, most influential houses of the twentieth century, it seems highly likely that the mid-century period will dominate,” writes Bradbury in the book’s introduction, going on to name such famous edifices as the three famous glass houses by Philip Johnson, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Lino Bo Bardi, respectively; Richard Neutra’s Kaufmann House; and Luis Barragán’s Cuadra San Cristóbal. “One could, of course, go on.…” he writes.
In the design world, is there any style that’s having more of a Renaissance moment than midcentury modern? It’s everywhere, from luxury hotels to high-end residential interiors to mainstream furniture lines from the likes of CB2 and Anthropologie, and it’s showing little sign of slowing down. In the midst of this revival, writer Dominic Bradbury, who has contributed to Architectural Digest, has compiled what might just be one of the most comprehensive books ever to be published on the subject.
I wanted this book to be a bit different. It’s not an encyclopaedia of India, but I really tried to go to a lot of different places and photograph whatever I saw that I thought seemed really visually intriguing. I went to music festivals, sporting events, wrestling…and there’s cricket and horse racing in this book too. There’s fashion week, and then small villages in Odisha. As a photographer, if you’re picky like I am, I didn’t want to just include say, a horse racing photograph, but I wanted to put myself in that position, and if I came up with something good, that would be great. I just wanted to try and put myself in a lot of different positions to see different elements of India.
Scott Schuman has been travelling to India for the better part of a decade. For his acclaimed fashion blog, The Sartorialist, Scott has photographed the eye-catching, sometimes strange, effortless whimsy of street fashion all around the world, and India has made a significant appearance too. Now, Scott is releasing a book of photographs specifically dedicated to the country—The Sartorialist: India, published by Taschen. Scott speaks to AD India about his travels to the country, his quest for the cool kids, and what still surprises him about Indian fashion.
Champagne is a lot bigger than it seems. Vineyards can be up to an hour away from each other depending on traffic, so it’s best to pick a home base in the heart of the region. The luxurious Domaine Les Crayères was the former home of Madame Pommery’s daughter (Pommery was a 19th century French businesswoman who took over her husband’s successful wine business after he passed away). The space was transformed into a hotel in the early 1980s, where it still retains some of the Belle Époque sensibility from its previous owner.
Champagne is one of those places in the world that there’s truly no bad season to visit. Yet, before you let the bubbles get to your head, remember to plan everything in-advance as many vineyards are small, independently owned, and can’t always accommodate walk-ins. The place is also very spread out, so you should consider renting a car or hiring a driver if you’re booking several tastings. Luckily, getting to Champagne is easy, as it’s only a two-hour train ride from Paris. In fact, some travelers even opt to simply make a day trip out of it. Time spent aside, the grandiose French architecture all the way to the glow of the vineyards will warm your heart (no, it’s not just the alcohol) and have you immediately wanting to come back.