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  Issue 19-4

A New York Couple Tapped A South Florida Designer To Contemplate Their Spa-Sibilities


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Joseph Pubillones,
Joseph Pubillones Interiors, Palm Beach, FL

Saxon Henry

Daniel Newcomb, Palm Beach Gardens, FL


"No one will argue that spa vacations are the rage. After all, who doesn’t love the quiet solace of whispery surroundings and indulgent amenities? The savvy spa-worshiper might argue, however, that having these in your private retreat trumps a stay in even the finest resort. One astute couple with this viewpoint asked designer Joseph Pubillones to create a serene interior for their 6,000-square-foot vacation condominium in Palm Beach, Fla.

With Zen-like intuition and clarity, the designer went to work, capturing the essence of tranquility with a dash of worldliness. “This is the young couple’s second home and they wanted a serene setting with a spa-like feel,” Pubillones says. “I played with contrasting materials to bring warmth to the spaces, but kept everything light and peaceful.”

Floor-to-ceiling windows and pale stone floors that continue onto a wrap-around terrace create the illusion that there is no division between inside and outside. Solar shades are tucked into soffits, leaving windows completely free of adornment, and the muted backdrop of the main living spaces evokes the sandy shores below. “The shag area rug under the seating gives the feeling that you’re walking on the beach,” Pubillones says. “It makes people want to take their shoes off the minute they see it.”

“I felt that we needed to bring ornamentation into the master suite, but I wanted it to be integrated into the walls,” Pubillones says. “That set the tone for the design of the tiles, which has a very abstract Moorish feel to it.”

Pubillones’ training as an architect served him well, as it resulted in some defining slights of hand. Corbels in the ceilings of the living and dining areas reference Art Deco architecture. They also provide the space with a lofty feeling that belies the limitations of the eight-foot-high original ceilings. Pubillones placed recessed lighting in a lower ring of the home’s stepped-down ceiling to create the illusion that the ceiling is floating when lit.

The retreat’s spa-like attributes are most evident in the master suite, which Pubillones gutted to create a completely open space swathed in creamy Venetian plaster and Bisazza mosaics. “We play with elements that are decorative but never gratuitous,” Pubillones says. “The chandelier above the infinity- edged tub, for example, signifies rain trickling down to the water below.”

References to the adjacent shoreline abound, from the fossilized shells and marine life embedded in the stone flooring to the birdseye blue maple-clad walls of the den. “I wanted this room to have a strong relationship to the ocean,” the designer says. “I like to bring allegories to rooms and this one suggests that the space is underwater — that it is being seen while diving or snorkeling, and that soft shapes are floating around.” A Japanese painting from the 1960s and an organic-shaped lounge chair that mimics an entwined mound of seagrass further the theme.

“I was fortunate to have had exemplary training as an architect, but my eye was always to the interior details and architecture,” says Pubillones, who now concentrates his efforts on the inside. “It’s not work; it’s what I love.”

Click Here to View Interior Design Sources

Living Area
Sofa - Poltrona Frau, S.p.A., New York, NY
Bench/ottoman and cocktail table - New Design Furniture Manufacturers, Inc., Lauderdale Lakes, FL
Club chairs - Artefacto, West Palm Beach, FL
Bench and chair cushion fabric - Donghia, Inc., DCOTA, Dania Beach, FL

Dining Area
Table and chairs - MouraStarr, New York, NY
Chandelier and pedestal - Custom designed by Joseph Pubillones, Inc., Palm Beach, FL
Artwork - Susane R Lifestyle Boutique, Miami Design District, Miami, FL
Flooring - Real Stone & Granite Corp., Fort Pierce, FL

Master Bedroom
Bed, desk and desk chair - Custom designed by Joseph Pubillones, Inc., Palm Beach, FL
Barrel chair, bed, desk and desk chair fabricated by New Design Furniture Manufacturers, Inc., Lauderdale Lakes, FL
Occasional table - Mecox Gardens, Palm Beach, FL
Light fixture and floor lamp - Arteriors Home, Dallas, TX
Desk lamp - Maitland-Smith, High Point, NC

Master Bath
Tub - Sok, Kohler, Ferguson Bath & Kitchen Gallery, West Palm Beach, FL
Tub surround, vanity and shelving fabricated by New Design Furniture Manufacturers, Inc., Lauderdale Lakes, FL
Countertop - Innovative Surfaces, Riviera Beach, FL
Tile - Bisazza North American, West Palm Beach, FL
Tile fabrication and flooring - ARH Specialty Tile, Inc., Lake Worth, FL
Sconces and chandelier - Luxe Cable + Light, Miami, FL
Chair fabric - Rogers & Goffigon, Ltd., D&D Building, New York, NY
Sculptures - Arteriors Home, Dallas, TX

Sofa and lamps - Ligne Roset, New York, NY
Chair - Phillips Collection, High Point, NC
Cocktail tables - Luminaire, Coral Gables, FL
Light fixture - 20th Century Lighting, Los Angeles, CA
Wood wall paneling - La Cuisine Interiors, West Palm Beach, FL
Artwork - NoHo Modern, Los Angeles, CA

Table and chairs - Catalina, Ficks Reed, Cincinnati, OH

Design assistants - Maria Alonso and Fran Gervolino, Joseph Pubillones Interiors, Palm Beach, FL
Interior renovations - A.Valdes Construction, West Palm Beach, FL
Accent pillow fabrics - Kravet Couture and Lee Jofa Fabrics & Furniture, Florida Design Center, North Palm Beach, FL
Draperies fabricated by Drapery Castle, Boynton Beach, FL
Upholstery services - My New Old Chair, West Palm Beach, FL



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