Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Mario Buatta Decorates a Glamorous Manhattan High-Rise

Last week, I featured the incredible Palm Beach and Southampton homes Mario Buatta decorated for Hilary Geary and Wilbur Ross, Jr. The couple's primary residence, located on the 30th floor of a Fifth Avenue Manhattan high-rise and also decorated by Buatta, is equally as stunning. Let's take a look inside the apartment, as featured in Architectural Digest. Photography by Derry Morre.

“The shiny walls glitter at night and glitter during the day, reflecting the lights of the city,” Mario Buatta says of Hilary Geary and Wilbur Ross’s apartment on the 30th floor of a Manhattan high-rise.
 A 19th-century bureau-bookcase with chinoiserie details, from Kentshire Galleries, adds ballast to the living room. “Every room needs something tall in it,” Buatta notes. Travers flamestitch bench fabric. Yellow pillow fabric and chair print, Brunschwig & Fils. Stark carpets.

“It’s really an evening apartment,” says Buatta, who created multiple seating areas for entertaining. The painting is by Russian artist Ivan Godlevsky. Newel Art Galleries low table. Mallett tea caddy. Pollack sofa linen. Drapery plaid and pillow print from Travers.

The eggplant shade on the living room walls, which Buatta treated to resemble porphyry, is “a great foil for all the pastels—it makes them sing out.” A painting by Helen Frankenthaler, at left, hangs below a work by Carlos Mérida. The portrait is by Sally Avery.

In the dining room, wraparound draperies inspired by batik create a tentlike feel. Drapery fabric from Brunschwig & Fils. Regency-style table from Smith and Watson. Vaughan gilded chandelier. Peach Ultrasuede on chairs, Lee Jofa.

“Because of the topiary trees, you feel you’re in a pavilion,” Buatta says. St. Bart’s artist Jean Verrechia painted the figure, which hangs over an 18th-century English sideboard, from Hyde Park Antiques. Pair of goose tureens from Ann Getty. Carpet from Stark.

Using knotty-pine paneling, Buatta transformed the once “hideous” library into a warm space “the color of a pecan” anchored by a Chiu Ya-Tsai canvas. Sofa and pillow fabrics, Colefax and Fowler. John Boone wall lights. Yale R. Burge side table. Patterson, Flynn & Martin carpet.

Blue and white hues define the master bedroom. Julia Gray chest of drawers. John Boone floor lamp. Newel Art Galleries 1950s basket sconces. Star print and trims from Brunschwig & Fils. White sofa fabric from Clarence House. Drapery stripe, Cowtan & Tout.

“The whole master bath is mirrored—it’s like a prism,” says Buatta, who also used white marble with black-marble trim. Art Déco dressing table from Lorin Marsh. étagère from Yale R. Burge. Niermann Weeks light fixture in mirror. Lee Jofa Ultrasuede on chair.

Can't get enough of Mario Buatta? Check out his recently released book, Mario Buatta: Fifty Years of American Interior Decoration, the eagerly anticipated first monograph that celebrates the 50-years-and-counting career of the decorating legend. Influenced by the understated elegance of Colefax and Fowler and the doyenne of exuberant American decor, Sister Parish, Buatta has decorated for notable clients such as Henry Ford II, Barbara Walters, Malcom Forbes, Mariah Carey, Blair House, the President's guest quarters... and of course Hilary Geary and Wilbur Ross, Jr. This lavish book includes many unpublished photographs, Buatta's personal stories, and his own rules for decorating. 

And for even more Mario Buatta goodness, click here for his upcoming book tour, including author events in New York, Miami (above), Nashville, and Huntsville, AL.  I plan on attending the Miami event, and I'd love to see you there! 


  1. His work is so glamorous yet cozy at the same time, he's so fantastically talented.

  2. Stunning. So nice to see this progress and all your posts along the way. Such a beautiful home!

    Luxform Tuinverlichting & Buitenverlichting


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