Tour the 2019 San Francisco Decorator Showcase

David Nash

The 42nd annual San Francisco Decorator Showcase is a little bit of history repeating, given that this year’s house, a historic mansion known as “Le Petit Trianon,” was also the property that hosted the fifth iteration of the design event in in 1982. On the National Register of Historic Places, the home was built in 1904 for Marcus and Cora Koshland, a wealthy couple who modeled the residence after the actual Le Petit Trianon at Versailles. At more than 18,000 square feet, the stately Presidio Heights home features 33 redesigned spaces, including nine bedrooms, eight bathrooms, two kitchens, a spacious front rotunda, a grand marble staircase, a three-story atrium, and two lower levels complete with several large entertaining spaces. It's no surprise it's also on the market currently for $30 million.

Benefitting San Francisco University High School’s financial aid program, the showcase has raised over $16 million. Fifty of the West Coast’s top interior and landscape designers have contributed rooms sponsored by Hakwood, Da Vinci Marble, Purcell Murray, C2 Paint, Kohler, Blue Star, and Vanguard Properties. The showcase opens to the public beginning Saturday, April 27, and tickets are available at decoratorshowcase.org/tickets or at the door. On the eve of its opening, AD PRO takes a look inside.

The Gardens: Zeterre Landscape Architecture

Zeterre Landscape Architecture.
Photo: Christopher Stark

Jarrod Baumann of Zeterre Landscape Architecture took inspiration from one of the parterres in the Orangerie at Versailles and created a very classically formed garden, but with the contemporary edginess his firm is becoming known for. Artist Yoko Kubrick’s sculptures are a focal point, highlighting the abstract lawn design, patterned after a lily flower. Outdoor furniture was supplied by Paola Lenti and furnishings came courtesy of Dzine. You’ll have to imagine the space at night when it’s illuminated by Flos lighting, or be lucky enough to experience it firsthand.

Family Room: Heather Hilliard Design

Heather Hilliard Design.
Photo: David Duncan Livingston

A marriage of French-inspired design from the 17th century to the present is the basis of Hilliard’s family room. The bright space makes the most of its Duoplank European oak herringbone floors by Hakwood Inc., which lay the groundwork, literally, for an array of well-placed furnishings. Highlights include an 18th-century tapestry from FJ Hakimian, and an M. Criaerd 18th-century Louis XV black and gold lacquer chinoiserie commode from C. Mariani Antiques.

Butler’s Pantry and Atrium: Kari McIntosh Design

Kari McIntosh Design.
Photo: John Merkl

McIntosh turned this butler’s pantry into a seriously amazing space for creating floral masterpieces. Antique McCoy pottery is shown with contemporary ceramics by local artists Torryne Choate and Linda Fahey against a backdrop of out-of-this-world gilded entomology-themed wallpaper from Fernando the Neat. A glass verre églomisé backsplash painted by Caroline Lizarraga Decorative Arts rests beautifully behind a black apron sink and a custom-colored faucet from Kohler. The highlight, however, may be the Versailles planter boxes from Eye of the Day Garden Center—the very same design as the originals for Versailles used to house wintering plants.

Dining Room: The Wiseman Group

The Wiseman Group.
Photo: Courtesy of Wiseman Group

Paul Wiseman, who hasn’t created a showcase room in over 20 years, returns with a bang after designing one of these very rooms back in 1982. Inspired by passionate collectors Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé, Wiseman’s team, including James Hunter, transformed the dining room of Le Petit Trianon into a hideaway full of objects, artwork, and furnishings, both classical and contemporary. Some of the eye-catching pieces included a Model E lantern from The Noguchi Museum, a selection of decorative bowls and plates by Jean Cocteau from Foster Gwin, an Oushak carpet from Mansour in Los Angeles, and an Edwin Lutyens octagonal table and chairs.

Living Room: Studio Collins Weir

Studio Collins Weir.
Photo: Matthew Millman

Susan Collins Weir and Chris Weir created one of the most airy, contemporary spaces, organized around an imposing coffee table by artist Mathieu Lehanneur. Originally bound for the Cooper Hewitt, but thankfully rerouted, the dramatic centerpiece is courtesy of Carpenters Workshop Gallery. The custom seating, a circular sectional designed by SCW and produced by HEWN, is as comfortable as it is inviting. The chandelier by Régis Botta for Ozone, from Bright on Presidio, floats effortlessly above.

Bathroom: Deniece Duscheone Design

Deniece Duscheone Design.
Photo: Jose Manuel Alorda

Utterly dramatic, this double-stall powder room by Deniece Duscheone Design stopped us in our tracks. Wallpaper from Timorous Beasties helps turn this jewel box of a bathroom into a “mystical garden of magic and the macabre.” With Jonathan Browning sconces and cocktail tables from De Sousa Hughes, a chandelier by Jocelyn Marsh and vintage mirrors, both from Coup D’Etat, plus a sink, faucets, and state-of-the-art toilets by Kohler, answering nature’s call has never been so chic.

Salon: Martin Kobus Home

Martin Kobus Home.
Photo: Christopher Stark

A salon worthy of playing center stage to several well-designed acts, this space from Martin Kobus is moody and harmonious. Walls in a warm petrol color and a ceiling covered in a geometric wallpaper from de Gournay would tend toward too masculine, if not expertly juxtaposed against feminine silhouettes. Custom-designed furniture in gilded ocher tones, mixed metals, velvet, and brass structures fit the space perfectly in what the designer calls “old-school meets New Age glamour” and “an unhinged place for all to play and be heard.”

Master Bathroom Spa: ABH Interiors

ABH Interiors.
Photo: Suzanna Scott

Alexis Humiston of ABH Interiors was inspired by the butterfly-themed debutante ball that original house owner Cora Koshland hosted for her granddaughter. The retreat is wrapped in custom de Gournay's Paradise Lost wallpaper, a collaboration with ABH. Chairs from Amy Somerville flank the fireplace, tiled in Cl´é Tile, and the ATRA coffee table. The faceted glass sinks, faucetry, and freestanding bath are all by Kohler.

Bedroom: Dina Bandman

Dina Bandman.
Photo: Christopher Stark

This incredibly charming bedroom is as fanciful as it is feminine. Dina Bandman hit it out of the park with her custom de Gournay magnolia motif wallpaper and inventive trailing magnolia branches, with plaster-dipped magnolias, that extend from the mirror above the fireplace up the ceiling. From the beautifully installed floors by Tulip Flooring and Holland and Sherry drapery and canopy fabric adorning the bed to the antique secretary desk from 1stdibs, the designer has created an ethereal masterpiece.

Master Bedroom, Dressing Room, and Master Bathroom: Navarra Design, Inc.

Navarra Design.
Photo: Courtesy of Navarra Design

Kathleen Navarra knows how to accept a challenge. Her three connected spaces share many of the same elements, creating a seamless flow. The original architectural details were the starting point, punctuated by rich, warm contemporary furnishings. Kneedler Fauchère supplied the custom bed, mirror, and cocktail tables by Ironies. Handprinted wallpaper depicting a modern interpretation of the Garden of Eden by Aux Abris and Sloan Miyasato was a real treat. In the bathroom, Kohler plumbing, vanities, and fixtures were perfectly paired with a Fox Marble vanity slab and sconces from Baker Furniture.

Indoor Garden: Brandon Pruett Design

Brandon Pruett Design.
Photo: Courtesy of Brandon Pruett Design

Everything looks better under natural light, and Pruett’s indoor garden is no exception. The house’s incredible skylight is made even more stunning through the designer’s use of plants, including Rhipsalis and Alocasia, from two of his most trusted sources, Cal-Orchid in Santa Barbara and specialty plant store Roots. All one needs to do is look up from one of the landings below and simply marvel at his work.

Rooftop Room: Willem Racké Studio and Susan Lind Chastain, Inc.

Willem Racké Studio and Susan Lind Chastain, Inc.
Photo: Courtesy of Willem Racké Studio and Susan Lind Chastain, Inc.

With views of the sky and the city, this French-themed room is papered in a modern version of a black and white toile with whimsical scenes and landscapes of San Francisco by Willem Racké. Fantastic 1980s Garouste & Bonetti settees, once covered in a red velvet, are now perfectly sheathed in an appealing tone by Sandra Jordan. A carpet from Tony Kitz helps anchor the room, and an array of accessories from Found by Maya dot the space perfectly. One of our favorite pieces is a 1950s bar cabinet which at first appears to be malachite, but on closer inspection is made of a much different exterior material.

The Breakfast Room: ECHE

ECHE.
Photo: Christopher Stark

Incorporating a decisive mix of antique, vintage, and contemporary pieces, Eche Martinez has created a tranquil room with tones of green and gray that evoke the elegance of a timeless garden. Campaign-style dining chairs from Richard Wrightman are perfection. The wood-paneled walls have been artistically transformed by Willem Racké and mimic the look of an old-world, limestone-clad veranda.

Ballroom: Applegate Tran Interiors

Applegate Tran Interiors.
Photo: Christopher Stark

The designer’s own description of the massive lower-level space says it all: “18th-century Europe meets [the] 21st-century world in a contemporary ballroom layered through time, connecting generations with art, light, and music.” Vernon Applegate and Gioi Tran are known for over-the-top design, and this is no exception. A phenomenally curated selection of artwork from ceramic vessels from Carpenters Workshop Gallery to pieces from Alex Ray Art Advisory, Josh Wafer, and Linda Horning fill the space. A bar, partially upholstered by Classic Elegance, is a mixologist's dream, complete with refrigeration by Purcell Murray.

Main Catering Kitchen, Service Lounge, and Powder Room: Jaimie Belew Interior Design and David Armour Architecture

Jaimie Belew Interior Design and David Armour Architecture.
Photo: Drew Kelly

This design collaboration is one for the record books. Four delineated spaces, two incredible talents, and one massively successful outcome. Reconfiguring the original floor plan, the pair created an even more organized, efficient, and delightful set of spaces. One of the most eye-catching elements was an enormous table-style prep island in the kitchen featuring a quartzite top from Da Vinci Marble, with wide pedestal bases of hand-carved marble with classic motifs by Provence Stone. Blue Star Cooking supplied the custom appliances, as Kohler did the plumbing fixtures, and Catalina Cabinets the custom cabinetry.

Classically Modern: Scott Robert Design

Scott Robert Design.
Photo: Christopher Stark

The right designer can create a big impact in the smallest of spaces. At just 27-years-old, Scott McMahan is the youngest solo designer ever to be given a space at the Decorator Showcase. An oak-and-steel chevron floor and wall trim set with steel strips are just two innovative elements. The focal point is a seven-foot custom-steel console table, with laser-cut, inlaid lacquer and glass panels by Iron Roots. Above it hangs a Renaissance-inspired diptych by Sonoma artist Aiden Kringen. A Gear Suspension chandelier by McEwen Lighting helps tie the space together.