A four-level 1890s townhouse in Brooklyn’s Fort Greene is brought to life through an esteemed curation of European vintage design pieces.

New York City-based design firm Ronen Lev’s founders Jessica Wilpon Kamel and Christina Akiskalou have a way with New York homes. The design duo have built a portfolio sensitively nudging these homes into the present through agelessly elegant interiors. Briefed by the young, creative clients to envisage a home full of colour and “unlike anything they’ve seen before,” Ronen Lev have channelled unexpected patterns, vivid artwork and an esteemed furniture curation. 

The dining space features a vintage marble oval dining table, vintage Bruno Rey dining chairs and a custom-designed shelving unit by Ronen Lev. The original fireplace and artwork by young Brooklyn painter Marcus Leslie Singleton in the centre of the room subtly distinguish the dining space from the living room.

“We played with scale to create tension in the space with the tall mirror and low sofa,” Jessica Wilpon Kamel says.

The parlour floor – the second floor in historic New York brownstones and townhouses accessed through the building’s front steps – is always the most luxurious. These grand rooms are often filled with period detailing such as high ceilings, stone fireplaces, large street-facing windows and ornate ceiling work. Ronen Lev founder Jessica Wilpon Kamel explains that she and Christina deliberately restricted the amount of furniture in this room, allowing each piece to shine in its own right. “Each piece is so special and unique in this room; we wanted every element to have space to breathe,” Jessica says. 

An intimate sitting area is formed at the front of this room, while the back plays home to an eclectic dining space featuring a vintage dining table and dining chairs and a custom-designed shelving unit by Ronen Lev. In the centre of the room, the original fireplace and artwork by young Brooklyn painter Marcus Leslie Singleton subtly distinguish both spaces.

The living space features a pair of yellow Luteca Line chairs, the Tacchini Julep sofa, Umberto Bellardi Ricci Travertine coffee table, Stephen Antonson Angele chandelier and vintage Alexander Girard bench, upholstered in checkered fabric. This traditional pattern repeats itself throughout the home, seen in the powder room tiles and entry foyer.

Layers of blush and terracotta in the primary bedroom evoke warmth, providing the client with their own sanctuary away from the rest of the home. As for both children’s rooms, Jessica admits these two rooms were the most significant challenge she faced when redesigning the home. “We wanted these rooms to feel like a place the kids would feel comfortable and would want to spend time in,” Jessica says. “We didn’t want them to feel like they were ‘decorated’ but instead a room that would inspire them to feel uniquely themselves,” she adds. With this in mind, Ronen Lev approached these rooms through a playful design lens, selecting soft, rounded furniture and vibrant green and yellow hues.

Ronen Lev’s Clinton Hill Townhouse is ultimately a celebration of those who live there. As Jessica puts it, “a space doesn’t have to be loud, bright or come at you from all directions to feel complete.”

Layers of blush and terracotta in the primary bedroom evoke a sense of warmth. Pictured: the Furniture Marolles stool, Pinch Anders pendant, vintage oak vanity table by Guillerme et Chambron, Armadillo x House of Grey Etoile rug – Porcelain and wall colour in ‘Pink Ottoman’ by French paint manufacturers Ressource Peintures.

It wouldn’t be a Brooklyn brownstone without a statement powder room. Ronen Lev opted for the whimsical Maison C Studio Natura Morta wallpaper, a Nickey Kehoe scallop sconce and exposed brass plumbing.

The formal sitting room features the Nickey Kehoe curved sofa, the Swedese Lamino easy chair and a white Serge Mouille pendant.

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