Designer Jan Showers follows up her best-selling, Glamorous Rooms, with Glamorous Retreats, and its more than 225 pages of beautiful homes and rooms are awe inspiring. Twelve individual projects, all homes of clients who use these glamorous rooms as second and third homes; a place to "reconnect with simplicity, nature, art, pleasure and relaxation". Must be nice, huh?
While the houses are lovely, and the decor beautiful, what you can't miss in any of the spaces of the 12 featured houses in the book, are the remarkable, breathtaking views, and how Jan allowed those views to be unobstructed. The interiors are simple, much less styled than the grand main houses of these clients, but there is still is something to be learned in every house.
From mountain to beach, from houses filled with amazing art to cottages primed and perfect for guests and kids, each house is different and means something different to the owners. Each house is introduced with a story, of how the owner found the house, and where and how Jan and the owners found the pieces within. This Harbor Island home in the Bahamas for instance, was a long-term rental for the now owners, who live in Houston full-time and used Jan to decorate their home there. The beach house was furnished with light, bright, vintage furniture and fabrics, with ocean colors and accents throughout the house. Still, it's not your cliche beach house.
One of my favorite rooms in the book is this cathedral ceiling bedroom. That iron bed, dressed with Italian voile panels and simple bed linens is so peaceful looking, isn't it. Like the perfect little cocoon to curl up into each night. Jan is a fan of these well dressed and curtained bedrooms, so it's no wonder she suggested it here in this Colorado home.
And lastly, but certainly not least, a house a little closer to me. In Toronto, a house all about art and collections. The rooms are spare, letting the art speak and communicate to the owners of the home and their guests. I was particularly taken with the garden. Designed by Tina McMullen, the plantings and paths surround unique and modern art placed by the owners and Jan.
I'm linking both of Jan's books here as I do recommend them both, but fear we will run out of time before I can do a proper post on her first book, Glamorous Rooms. Both books are wonderful examples of the marriage of items, making a room both beautiful and uniquely personal. If you have a partner who prefers to have a say in the design of your home, or work with picky clients who just can't seem to agree, picking up either Glamorous Rooms, or this book, Glamorous Retreats will quickly and effectively give you inspiration for making it work - in the most sophisticated and beautiful of ways.