One of the most celebrated interior designers of our time, Kelly Hoppen CBE creates her own home in the signature style we long for, worship and adore.
photos: Mel Yates
With such an abundance of remarkable design talents in the world, far be it from me to play favorites. But the fact that I'm an admirer of Kelly Hoppen is not one I've ever kept secret. I've never been afraid to tell you she's my girl crush. And recently, I doubled-down on that and revealed to the object of my affection exactly what is in my heart. Yes, when I had the "pinch me I must be dreaming" experience of interviewing the award-winning designer about her soon-to-be-released latest book, Kelly Hoppen's Essential Style Solutions for Every Home, I told Kelly how much I love her. Right to her face.
Having changed the current of the design industry with her singular East Meets West style - defined by a subtle fusion of clean lines and neutral tones intuitively balanced with an opulent warmth - Kelly Hoppen CBE, MBE is one of the most sought-after designers of our generation. Her diverse portfolio includes exclusive commercial properties, private homes and jets, superyachts, and five-star hotels. Kelly's brand partnerships are equally prominent (think Restoration Hardware, de Gournay, Loloey and more if you want to get a feel for the caliber we're talking here.)
But before we examine her passion project, the design of her own home, let's discuss the awards. You see, an Order of the British Empire is arguably the "royal flush" of awards; royal, indeed, as it is endowed by The Queen herself... just like a knighthood. MBE - which stands for Member of the Order of the British Empire - is awarded to someone for making a positive impact in their line of work. It is the third highest ranking Order of the British Empire award. CBE - which stands for Commander of the British Empire - is the highest ranking Order of the British Empire award. It too is given to people to recognize a positive impact they have made through their work.
Kelly Hoppen has received both.
She was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in 2009 for her services to interior design, and in 2020, Hoppen was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for her service to the GREAT campaign (the UK’s international brand marketing campaign, which works closely with UK businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and high-profile figures to promote the best of the UK abroad).
Though I've swooned over - and covered - Kelly's work through the years, I was especially jazzed when I got word that she'd done her own home. My great expectations were not only met, but exceeded. And so, it is with pleasure that I bring you "The Auction House," Kelly Hoppen's 9,000 square-foot, 6-bedroom, 6-bathroom private residence in London - a true homage to her extraordinary gift for interior design.
Situated in a residential area in London, the property was a dream of Kelly’s that finally became a reality. The ancient auction house was a blank canvas for the designer. Characteristics of her world-renowned style - an elegant play of material and texture, and her beloved neutral palette of taupe, whites, beiges, and grays complemented by beautiful pops of green, bronze, nickel, and rose gold - were employed throughout the entire project. Each area is as inviting and intriguing as the next, imbued with luxury while staying true to Kelly’s laid back lifestyle. Iconic and vintage furniture can be seen throughout, as well as bespoke pieces designed by Hoppen herself.
Poised atop a sleek set of up-lit stairs, the entrance hall is tastefully accessorized and decorated with flowers and black & white photographs. A round mirror Kelly found at the Les Puces flea market in Paris and an imposing photo of Muhammad Ali are among the items from her private collection that adorn the walls. "The bespoke light in my entrance hall is the result of a discussion with Herve Langlais and Galerie Negropontes at PAD London," says Hoppen. "It is a great addition to the entrance and draws beautiful vertical lines that emphasize the height of the ceiling. The soft curves of the metal around the delicate round paper shades are, to me, the perfect balance."
The driving force behind the seductive living room Kelly designed was her love of hosting large gatherings. Stunning wooden floors laid in a herringbone pattern strike a perfect color tone that took six months' effort to achieve. Wooden arches were added to the impressive pre-existing columns, bringing a sense of monumentality.
The stunning upholstery pieces in the seating area are Kelly's own designs, as are the bespoke bubble lights above them. The golden disk floor lamp is a sculpture called "Ribot" by DeCastelli.
A modernist Le Corbusier armchair demonstrates Hoppen's love of iconic design pieces; she had it upholstered in linen... one of her declared favorite fabrics.
Naturally lit during the day, the character-filled dining room overlooks the living room and kitchen. By night, it is illuminated by a bespoke linear pendant, Kelly's own design. The stone table is an astounding 6 meters (over 19 feet!) in length... a testament to the homeowner's love of entertaining a crowd.
Sleek rotating lacquer shutters give way to a cozy TV room.
The lustrous powder room is watched over by a glass owl that is very special to Kelly; it's been part of her personal art collection for years.
"Grouping objects with a common theme always creates impact," states Hoppen in her new book. She proves it here with a verdant arrangement placed beneath the open staircase.
The master bedroom - designed around everything Kelly dreams of - is sensual, luxurious and breathtaking. Delicate dangling bedside light pendants from Ochre are framed by clever ribbed walls that add symmetry to the room. The sultry chaise longue, designed by Kelly for her e-commerce store, adds to the relaxed ambiance of this sumptuous space.
Kelly sourced the mirror on her dressing table from Rue De Lilles in Paris.
Her spacious, dreamy walk-in wardrobe is decorated with oversized black & white photographs, a pair of vintage chairs, and two India Mahdavi stools which are utilized as accent tables in this instance.
For her showstopping master bedroom ensuite, Kelly designed a freestanding tub in collaboration with Australian bathware designer Apaiser. Crafted in reclaimed marble and inspired by the petals of a lotus flower, this one-of-a-kind statement piece is placed on an elevated marble platform that's lit from underneath for maximum impact. International contemporary artist and lighting designer Niamh Barry was brought in to design the amazing chandelier; the loops surround the bath in light for a cocoon-like feel.
"Contrary to what many people think, I am by no means allergic to color and I love the extra dimension that cleverly selected accents can bring to a space," says Kelly. This guest bedroom features burnt orange - one of her favorite hues - as well as a life-sized Mickey Mouse - the result of a collab between Hoppen and celebrated French "pop sculpture" house Leblon Delienne.
As strikingly designed as the rest of the house, this guest bedroom is dressed in Kelly Hoppen’s beautiful hospitality range, including her luxurious and sophisticated collection of hotel fabrics in collaboration with the textile brand Richloom.
"Give the connecting areas in your home the same design consideration as any other space," advises Kelly. "Although they are not usually somewhere to linger, they are passed through frequently and this should be a pleasant experience."
Once again collaborating with Apraiser, Kelly designed this marble bathtub, and named it Origami after the Japanese art that inspired it. "I love the Eastern influence and the statement it makes," she says. The ceramic side table is from Sé London.
The downstairs bedroom is embellished with French antiques Kelly obtained on Lillie Road; a chandelier of white plaster and rope from French antique dealer Gwenola Pilard at Quindry, and lacquer bedside tables from Dorian Caffot de Fawe.
Kelly's personal residence is in every way an embodiment of her in-demand style. In this ambitious project, she's brilliantly fused the Eastern principle of simplicity with the Western taste for lush, luxurious finishes and textures. No wonder Kelly feels so at home here. It's so "Hoppen."
photo: Nick Haddow
For more information about Kelly Hoppen, visit: kellyhoppeninteriors.com