Much like an Hermès’ bag, Singapore’s Hermès-decorated apartment is an exquisitely thoughtful, while understated, display of elegance. Located in The Marq on Paterson Hill, the interior design of the 6,200 square foot, 5 bedroom apartment was led by Yves Taralon, renowned creative director of La Table Hermès. “It’s the first time I have designed something at this height, with the sky and the view,” Taralon says. He wanted the interior to feel calm and natural against Singapore’s bustling populous and hard rectilinear structures. The space finds its balance through of recurring squares, a refined color palette and symmetry. “As soon as something’s in the right place, you have peace.”
Used for only private engagements, the apartment features “a carefully curated combination of Hermès furniture, furnishing fabrics, wallpapers, carpets, tableware, along with made-to-order leather-upholstered items and a choice of artworks,” according to the property developer SC Global Developments, a leader in the international luxury residential market.
It not only feels Hermès, it tells the story of Hermès. In the 1920s, French interior designer Jean-Michel Frank, at the forefront of modern French style, asked Hermès to cover several of his furniture pieces with the luxury house’s famous buttery leather. Last year Hermès reintroduced the designer’s signature pieces. His ever-modern sofas and chairs upholstered in rope, ecru natté and ivory bull calf, are complemented in the entertaining space by a smudge-effect silk Appaloosa rug, and a wall size chalk drawing of a horse, sketched by Jean-Luc Favero at the request of Hermès. With savoir-faire it is the focal point of the space, against a dark brushed oak wall. Frank’s inverted U tables, in calfskin, take precedence in the center of the room while a pair of yolk-yellow méridiennes by Antonio Citterio, a Milano furniture designer and past creative partner of Hermes, mirror one another. Beneath them sits unobtrusively an inlaid chess board crafted out of palisander wood and leather from Samarcande, a city most noted for its central position on the Silk Road between China and the West.
The opulent dining room offers not one pièce de résistance, but two: a dresser and a table, both custom-made in Hermès leather workshops. The square motif appears most prominent here in the parchment-covered oak table, bordered with hand-stitched electric blue Clémence leather. Taralon’s Bleus d’Ailleurs porcelain, Saint-Louis crystal glasses and Puiforcat silverware adorn the table. “I wanted to infuse the apartment with Hermès ideals: comfort, intimacy, the pleasure of sharing moments,” he says. “But the most important furniture for me is the dressoir. Every piece, every fork, has its own place.” Even the custom-made Saint-Louis chandelier that suspends from the high ceiling is finished with a single electric blue pendant.
The artform of Marquetry, one with few remaining craftsmen, adds a je ne sais quoi the master bedroom. The armour and bed are of panels of made-to-measure natural rye straw marquetry. Frank’s iconic three drawer dressing table lined in parchment and ivory goatskin offsets a pure silk Patine rug. A collection of Philippe Dumas’ Pêle-Mêle – each horseback character representing a member of the Hermès clan, so the story goes – stand out from Fil d’Argent wallpaper and porcelain. The study is furnished with a desk and chairs, in gold leather and Canaletto walnut, from the Métiers collection designed by Enzo Mari. “It adds a note of seriousness to the residence,” Taralon says.
Quotes from the June/July issue of Surface Asia
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