How interior designer Maurizio Pellizzoni brought old-school movie style to a Kent home
South-East London isn’t a place much associated with old-time Hollywood glamour. But in Keston Park, an exclusive gated development located between Bromley and Orpington, interior designer Maurizio Pellizzoni has created a home that pays tribute to the era of classic MGM movies.
The house itself is modern (‘it was an empty shell when I got my hands on it,’ says Pellizzoni), which means it’s full of clean, contemporary lines that lend themselves perfectly to the strong colours associated with the style. In this case Pellizzoni plumped for a simple colour palette – black and white makes a statement in one bedroom, while the master is varying shades of mocha.
There’s an emphasis on texture throughout the house, but particularly in the bedrooms – think top-quality linens, soft carpeting and leather armchairs. It’s as much about comfort as style. The furnishings, meanwhile – mostly sourced at Ralph Lauren, though some pieces are from B&B Italia and Flexform – are bold and masculine. There’s a reason for this: ‘The client is a single man who works in the City,’ says Pellizzoni. ‘He wanted a bigger house – it has four bedrooms – but it’s very much a bachelor pad.’
That means it boasts some impressive bachelor-pad features, such as the cinema room in the loft, which comes complete with a 20-seater Poliform sofa, pool table and bar area. There’s a huge, retractable screen, perfect for movie viewing, while two life-sized figures of Batman and the Joker flank the entrance. Yes, there’s humour here, but the silver ashtrays, walnut furniture and glass decanters make it a dream spot for sipping late-night whisky sours and smoking cigars.
The overall vibe might be masculine, but soft throws and silver frames add a touch of old-fashioned luxury. Attention has been paid to the detail – look closely and you’ll see silver models of classic cars and, in the sitting room, an ocean liner. Meanwhile, even the coffee-table books have been chosen with an eye for glamour. The pictures, too, are a vital part of this look, and include a large black-and-white New York skyline in the sitting room, as well as photographs of movie icons like Frank Sinatra and Marlon Brando. ‘The artwork comes from America and England,’ says Pellizzoni. ‘Some pieces are original; others are reproduction prints.’
The old-Hollywood theme is continued throughout the home but, in a fun touch borrowed from boutique hotels, each bedroom has its own style. That said, Pellizzoni’s own favourite spaces are the cinema room and sitting room. ‘The colour in both is very balanced – one is grey and black; the other is cream and white,’ he says. The sitting room also opens out onto the garden, giving it a light, airy feel. Pellizzoni had carte blanche to do what he liked with the house, but worked closely with the client. ‘As I always do,’ he adds. Knowing that the client didn’t want to go over budget, Pellizzoni persuaded him to keep the existing kitchen, rather than splurging on a new one. Instead the room was updated with new artwork, design features and Tom Dixon lighting. The whole project proved a big hit with the client. Pellizzoni smiles: ‘He knew exactly what he wanted and was very happy with the results.’
For more information about Maurizio Pellizzoni visit the MPD London website
All photography by Jake Fitzjones Photography Ltd