It’s hard to beat the location and provenance of this Los Angeles home. It was designed and built in Brentwood, Los Angeles, in 1996 by Robert L. Earle, who gained fame as a celebrated California architect over the years having designed homes for the likes of Madonna, Sylvester Stallone, Nancy Sinatra, and Warren Beatty. The architect’s homes tend toward the more traditional style, and this, in the Mediterranean/Spanish Colonial Revival style, was no exception.
With such an impressive heritage behind it, it’s no wonder this is one of the The best homes in the worldBut time has not stood still and recent renovations and redesigns have changed the interior designs and added more improvements and elegance.
Interior designer Cara Smith of KES Studio was tasked with these updates, preparing the house for a more modern lifestyle and bringing harmony to the original’s somewhat sectioned (by today’s standards) floor plan. She guides us around, picking out the highlights.
Designer Kara Smith approached the entire home redesign with distinct realism. “We struck a balance between classic and modern, sophisticated but not stuffy, and luxurious but approachable,” she says.
The kitchen is where she first turned her attention. Ha Kitchen ideas Showcasing luxurious designs and finishes, but first there was some structural work to address. “The interiors were very discrete and closed off, so we replanned the entire space, removing walls and opening up spaces to create a large open-plan kitchen with a huge central island, marble and plaster mantle, coffee station and butler’s pantry,” she explains.
Note the new steel-framed smart glass screen connecting the formal dining room to the new kitchen.
As you move through the house, you will realize a harmonious palette of dark brown tones – soft beige, cream and caramel, with accents of black and white giving the space a natural calm and creating the perfect mood for relaxation. In the kitchen, bleached walnut cabinetry, gorgeous Arabescato Vagli marble countertops, and blackened steel accents are the main materials that contribute to the dark brown color palette. Anyone looking for kitchen island ideas cannot help but be impressed by the stunning curved design topped with this luxurious marble.
Furniture includes a Holly Hunt dining table used for casual dining, dining chairs, Thomas Hayes benches, and Lawson Fenning pendant lights.
Kara Smith, founder of KES Studio, is a self-taught designer with a passion for exploring new styles, curating artwork from around the world, and incorporating bespoke product design. Because every project is an opportunity to craft something truly unique, Cara believes thoughtful design begins with understanding the client’s aesthetic as well as the project’s goals and challenges, and combining it with her own interpretation to create distinctive, custom designs. While Cara is intimately involved in each project on a daily basis, she is constantly searching for inspiration through travel, art and culture. Not only is she aware of emerging trends, she is also a tastemaker who helps influence the future of design.
When asked about her inspiration and style for the new-look rooms, designer Cara Smith said: “The interiors are classically modern, featuring furnishings with clean, simple lines, plush fabrics and dramatic chandeliers.” Indeed her Dining room ideas For a formal dining space at home, distill this style perfectly.
This was an odd space in the house’s original floor plan, sandwiched between the kitchen, main entrance and staircase. It is now linked to the kitchen by a large steel and glass screen with arched doors (pictured below), thus connected to the other spaces, but separate enough to create the right atmosphere for more relaxed entertaining with friends.
This stylish space showcases some great ideas for a modern dining room, for example, we love the arch-back dining chairs. These subtly complement the arched openings which are a theme throughout the house and typical of Mediterranean/Spanish architecture.
Other key pieces that caught our eye include the bleached herringbone wood flooring topped with a custom wool/silk Art + Loom rug, while above the custom Una Malan dining table is a stunning yellow crystal chandelier. A custom marble fireplace mantel gives the room a new focus.
The new must-have for the home that has it all: Meet the wine room, this room is sensationally luxurious. The wine room ideas we like here include the curved glass wall surrounding Brescia Capri marble slabs set in a custom oak wine cabinet, and the Arteriors oval console that doubles as a tasting table.
In the library/home office, the house’s original Robert L. Earle architecture is still very much evident. A row of arched windows overlook the backyard and the look is enhanced with new painted molding details in the classic style.
Between them Home library ideas For this elevated space, designer Cara Smith customized a custom marble and bronze executive desk with folding chairs from KES Studio, artwork from Manolo Ballesteros, and Holly Hunt wall sconces.
Providing a clever frame for home library ideas, double built-in oak bookcases are set on either side of the entryway into the walls with ornate vintage molding details, while a KES Studio area rug by Mark Phillips keeps things soft and luxurious underfoot.
There was also space in the generously proportioned room for designer Kara Smith to play around with seating ideas for her home office. The Una Malan sofa and lounge chair shine with the Castilleja coffee table. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a good book.
Living room ideas It was developed from the desire to reduce some of the details of the 1990s. “We respected the home’s original architectural style, but updated the interior architectural details by simplifying the moldings, creating new stone fireplace mantels with modern shapes, and adding carved ceiling details,” says designer Cara Smith. There’s an understated elegance to the new living room scheme, still in keeping with the taupe color palette, but this time with a touch of calm gray and blue mixed in. The room features the same bleached wood floors seen elsewhere in the main rooms.
Other key pieces include: a KES Studio for Marc Phillips area rug, a custom two-tone plaster coffee table, a pair of Gallotti & Radice lounge chairs, and a Chen Chen & Kai Williams Geo Transitions mirror above the fireplace.
The family/entertainment room is perhaps the most surprising space in a remodeled home. The entire space has been converted from the original attached 4-car garage, while a new detached garage has been built into the grounds.
The interior design of this new room is eye-catching, and although it mirrors the color palette elsewhere in the house, there are bold new treatments and departures in Kara Smith’s media room ideas. The custom bar is created from backlit limestone wall panels, there are coffered ceiling details, plus plenty of space for friends and family to gather to enjoy a movie and have a good time together.
The oversized sectional sofa is a custom piece, the area rug is from Erik Lindstrom, the coffee table is from Liaigre, and one of the room’s most opulent details is the custom leather-covered tabletop.
Another living room? Wrong, no. This comfortable and quiet sitting space is part of the primary bedroom. If there is space in the bedroom for a sofa, coffee table, armchairs and a wall-mounted fireplace, well, by all means make it a part of your home. Bedroom ideas, Designer Kara Smith advises. Nothing says relaxation quite like a bedroom sofa.
On the practical side, the coffered ceiling features built-in curtain pockets, while a custom walnut pop-up TV sits at the foot of the bed (not pictured), the custom fireplace and hearth are in sand-colored marble, and the area rug is from Art + Loom, another custom piece.
The final stop on the tour is the luxurious bathroom, where Kara Smith has completely re-planned the space.
“I created his-and-hers bathrooms surrounding an enormous wet room area with dual shower heads and a built-in soaking tub, all featuring some of the most beautiful book-matched Calacatta Manhattan marble we’ve ever seen,” she says.
Praise indeed, but it certainly leaves a lasting impression among them Bathroom ideas It’s a landmark moment in the remodeled home as a whole.
Interior design: Kara Smith, founder of KES Studio
Photography: Ingalls Photography