An American family sought Sydney-based interior design studio Hugh-Jones Mackintosh to design their home in San Francisco’s Bay Area, observing clear parallels between the two coastal cities and their outdoor-focused living. ‘Bay Blue’ seamlessly fuses the two distant corners of the world, reflecting its vibrant, cosmopolitan owners through a unique global lens.
Aside from their like-connection to the outdoors, San Francisco and Sydney differ in their approaches to architecture and design. The clients chose to engage Hugh-Jones Mackintosh rather than a local design team to deviate from the traditional design aesthetic and bring a fresh Australian perspective. Confident that their approach resonated with the clients, Hugh-Jones Mackintosh embraced the opportunity, embarking on their first project outside Australia.
Through a measured approach to the interiors, Hugh-Jones Mackintosh were able to realise the clients’ vision for a “sanctuary in the shape of a home”. Being avid travellers, it was imperative that their home felt like somewhere they could escape from their busy lives. “The owners wanted to create balanced and calming spaces while infusing elements of their vibrant personalities through the choice of materials, furniture, art and lighting,” Justine Hugh-Jones says.
The palette consists of mostly natural and neutral materials punctuated by bold, somewhat unexpected colours. Notably, different shades of blue and green were used to evoke a sense of calm while paying homage to the coast. This is revealed in the study, painted a royal blue; the bar room painted deep teal-blue; and the master bedroom, painted a sage green.
In addition to choosing colours that echoed the home’s natural surroundings, Hugh-Jones Mackintosh strategically placed steel-framed glass windows and doors to frame views of the garden throughout. “By exercising restraint with the window furnishings, we ensured the threshold between inside and outside didn’t become too cluttered, allowing the interiors to breathe within the landscape,” Katrina Mackintosh says.