Summer is about alfresco living

VilleFrancheTerrace in a converted water cleaning station in Villefranche sur Mer, France designed by Philippe Tondeur (Photo: Laurent Saint Jean for 3Mille)

I have gotten rather addicted to Pinterest!  It is quite easy for me to get caught up in collecting and organizing beautiful images from architecture and design to fashion and art.  I know I am most certainly not the only one, and all of a sudden an hour goes by.

It is Summer after all, and one of my favorite categories is “Alfresco Living”.  Given the typical cool summers in San Francisco, only most rarely dotted with hot days and balm evenings, I am dreaming of spending my time outside, and in warmer climates.  Come and travel with me virtually as we visit some of my favorite outdoor living spaces.  From romantic to modern, I would love to hang out at any one of them right now

IbizaContemporary seating and pool with a divine view at Dupli Dos in Ibiza, Spain by Juma Architects and Minimum Arquitectura (Photo: courtesy of Juma Architects)


Outdoor patio and pool at “Mansion Kyani” a privat villa for rent on Santorini, Greece (Photo: courtesy of Santorini Heritage)


Roof top terrace of Bruno Frisoni’s and Hervé Van der Straeten’s home in Tangier, Morocco (Photo: François Halard for Vogue)


Private pool at a suite at Oberoi Udaivilas in Udaipur, India (Photo: courtesy of Udaivilas)

Capri Jean Louis Deniot 002

Relaxed outdoor lounge seating on a patio in a home in Anacapri, Italy designed by Jean-Louis Deniot (Photo: courtesy of Jean-Louis Deniot)


Outdoor living room at the Villa Amanzi in Phuket, Thailand designed by Original Vision Studio (Photo: Marc Gerritsen)


Bougainvillea-covered patio in the home of Amador Calafat-Busquets on Mallorca (Photo: courtesy of El Meuble)

ML Bullard

Moroccan inspired lounge area in the backyard of Martyn Lawrence Bullard’s home in Los Angeles, CA (Photo: William Waldron for Elle Decor)



Lounging terrace with view of the Mediterranean at a villa in Positano designed by Lazzarini Pickering Architects (Photo: Matteo Piazza)


Terrace with sea view in a garden in Carpintera, CA designed by Eric Nagelman (Photo: Tim Street Porter)

I love the very different cultural expressions of these places.  I have been to Udaivilas, but I would graciously accept an invitation to visit any all of the other places.  So if you own one of them give me a jingle, and I will be on my way.

Wishing everyone a balmy summer!




Pro Spotlight on Porch

pic11Artwork in a bedroom in a Victorian townhouse in Pacific Heights, San Francisco

My firm partnered with Porch, the newest kid on the block of design-related apps, which will officially launch in June.  I was impressed by the drive and passion this group of young tech geniuses brought to our industry by developing a brand new way of connecting home owners with professionals.

I am honored that they chose me for the first “Pro Spotlight” on their blog.  Check it out and look out for Porch on your smartphone in June.  I would love to hear your thoughts.



Fabulous books to add to your library

Casadei tiger and patent leather pumps resting comfortably on New Paris Style, David Hicks and Fortuny Interiors

I love gorgeous design and coffee table books, and my addiction is as serious as the one I have for shoes.  Pumps or sandals, high heels, ballerinas, loafers or boots, is the kind of eye candy this girl lives for.  I believe I chose my apartment over the other two available at the time because it had a larger walk-in closet that included built-in shoe shelves.  How could I resist?!  I know I am not alone in either passion.  Most designers I know not only love fashion, but they also like me have an extensive collection of design and architecture books.  It is always fun to browse a colleague’s library.

With my interview series “Tea With Claudia” I have had the wonderful opportunity to spend time with interior designers and architects who are not only some of the best in the country, but have also had a number of books published about their work.  Among my illustrious guests John Saladino has “Monochrome”“Style by Saladino” and “Villa” out, Bunny Williams authored “On Garden Style”, “An Affair with a House”, and “Bunny Williams’ Scrapbook for Living”, Jamie Drake got “Jamie Drake’s New American Glamour”, David Easton “Timeless Elegance: The Houses of David Easton” and Geoffrey Bradfield “Geoffrey Bradfield: Defining Millenium Modern”, “Geoffrey Bradfield Ex Arte” and “A 21st Century Palace”.  Of course I own them all, and I would highly recommend you checking them out too.

My latest obsessions are “New Paris Style”, “David Hicks: A Life of Design” and “Fortuny Interiors”.  Also look out for the upcoming “Luxurious Minimalism: Elegant Interiors” scheduled for March 5th, “Designers at Home: Personal Reflections on Stylish Living: Inside the Lives of Leading Tastemakers” by super lifestyle blogger Ronda Rice Carman, to be released on April 9th, “Shelton, Mindel & Associates: Architecture and Design”, going on sale April 16th, and  “Michael S. Smith: Building Beauty: The Alchemy of Design” available on May 14th.

Happy reading!  And pleas drop me a line to let my about your favorite design and architecture books.