Monday, November 3, 2014

Carleton Varney Colorizes The Colony Hotel

Last month, my husband and I had the privilege of attending the grand reopening soiree for The Colony Hotel, Palm Beach. The Colony had closed temporarily over the summer to complete its multi-million dollar renovation, led by renowned interior designer Carleton Varney.

Located within steps of Worth Avenue, the Colony has been a symbol of Palm Beach glamour since it opened in 1947, and it boasts an impressive guest list that includes American Presidents, British Royalty, movie stars, and corporate czars.

Mr. Varney’s task was to refresh while preserving the legacy of the hotel’s rich past. Precisely 285 fabrics were selected for the curtains, throw pillows, and various upholstery throughout the hotel's 91 rooms and suites, featuring Floridian shades of pinks, yellows, blues, and greens.  My all-time favorite print, Brazilliance - which features palm fronds and grape clusters, is used repeatedly throughout the hotel. Each room has its own personality with unique colorways, pattern combinations, lamps, and artwork including original watercolor paintings by Palm Beach resident Edwina Sandys. The renovation instills a happy, whimsical vibe that stays true to the hotel's traditional British Colonial architecture.

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel
The exterior walls of The Colony Hotel have been many shades over the last six decades from brown to yellow. The current color, selected by Mr. Varney, is Wolcott Salmon, which was Dorothy Draper's favorite color - and it is named after her ancestor Oliver Wolcott, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Click here to view the Dorothy Draper/Carleton Varney Paint Collection for Fine Paints of Europe.  

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel
The Colony's glittery new chandelier in the lobby weighs more than 1,300 pounds and contains 637 individually hand-hung crystal pendants.

The walls of the main lobby are covered in Jasper Peony from the Carleton V limited wallpaper and fabrics collection. 

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel
Aren't you just loving all of the Brazilliance?!

 Image via Patricia Sheridan
The famous Polo Lounge now features photo murals by photographer Harry Benson, gingham and cowhide fabrics, and generous doses of emerald green. 

 Image via Patricia Sheridan
The hallways on each floor are are done in different shades - Carleton Blue, Dorothy Pink, and Millbrook Green. 

Image via my iPhone
The wallpaper in the halls below the chair rail was designed by Mr. Varney's son, Sebastian. 

Image via Patricia Sheridan
The veranda between the pool (which is shaped like the state of Florida) features blue and white checks and a Brazilliance banana leaf canopy. 

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel
The $9 million+ renovation cost breaks down to just under $100,000 for each of the hotel's 91 guest rooms and suites. 

Image via my iPhone
No detail has been left unturned... from the menus to the ice buckets to the glass covers - a trait Mr. Varney undoubtedly learned from his mentor, Dorothy Draper

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Image Courtesy of The Colony Hotel

Known as "Mr. Color," Varney is president and owner of Dorothy Draper & Co., the oldest design firm in the United States, and I could not have been more thrilled to meet him in person! 

Want to see more of this spectacular hotel? Click here to read an earlier post I wrote on the Colony renovations, or visit thecolonypalmbeach.comFor more on Dorothy Draper & Co. and Carleton Varney products, shop online at www.dorothydraper.com or www.carletonvarney.com

And if you are in Palm Beach this season, make sure to take advantage of cabaret at The Colony Hotel's Royal Room, described by The Palm Beach Post as "probably the best place for cabaret on the planet." More on that to come! 

6 comments:

  1. Although I have always found Carleton Varney's decor to be a little over the top, he must be congratulated on his use of colour. Not one person will be "greiged to death" in that hotel. I breathe a sigh of relief not to see brown brown brown brown brown everywhere. One opens a shelter magazine these days and flips through pages and pages of neutrals that are très ennuyeux. Vive la couleur!

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  2. I love Carlton Varney! Lovely post... you look adorable!! xo

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  3. Great post!
    Love the portrait of you and CV !
    Dean

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  4. How wonderful to have met Carlton Varney! I still would love to take his decorating class at the Greenbriar. You look fantastic in that Lilly shift!

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  5. Hi!
    All of the fabrics and wallpapers are available through our firm, MP Interiors, which is an agent company for Carleton Varney and many other famous brands- thanks again for this fantastic coverage! www.mp-interiors.net
    Dean Farris

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  6. You are living right, Andrea. I would LOVE to meet the fabulous Mr. Varney. He knocked it out of the park with this renovation. Thanks so much for sharing it. I want to make a reservation now.

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Thank you for your lovely comments. They absolutely make my day!

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