This Ethan Allen villa-style room is feminine without being fussy
It seems a little disloyal but every time I return from a stay at a good hotel, I look at my bedroom - more specifically my bed - and wish it was like the super-comfortable, luxurious, good-looking one I had left
behind. There is something about a hotel bed that spells pampering. From the linen to the mattress and pillows, and the fact that someone changes the sheets every day for you, a hotel bed is on many a wish list.
So what does it take to make you feel like you are checking into your favourite hotel, every night? Fortunately, not so much that it becomes a daunting task. Simply take a clear-headed look at what is already in the room, the existing colours, furniture and accessories. Then think of the look you need to work towards and through a process of selection and elimination, create your new boutique bedroom.
The many tips from experts on the following pages are easy to incorporate into your new look without breaking the bank.
Style 1: Villa
Key elements: feminine, hand-crafted detail, fresh
This look is feminine without fuss, serene yet strong, has a heritage feel while also being comfortably modern. This is a good example of a monochromatic room using lime green as the main colour complemented by fuchsia pink to add depth and contrast (imagine an orchid, green leaves with lots of white flower). Inspired by the best of French and Scandinavian design, Villa seamlessly blends carved woods, hand-crafted caning and deceptively simple artisan touches with dressmaker details. It offers a fresh richness that never overwhelms. The room captures the feel of a calm gathering spot with details of craftsmanship enriching its ambiance.
Style 2: Glamour
Key elements: comfort, mansion-style, luxury
This look of this room is a blend of art deco, Chippendale and Modern. An utterly grown-up style, it evokes the feel of an Old Hollywood mansion or the home of a sophisticated connoisseur. A deliberate marriage of fashion and sumptuous comfort, it seeks to surround you with sleek finishes and sensuous opulence. Varied shades of cream and brown are used, owing to their wide appeal, and clean lines are one of the key features. The accessories are luxurious with beautiful crystal lamps. Gorgeous white roses add an extra touch of luxury.
Style 3: Eichholtz
Key elements: classicism, subtle prints, easy feel
This is a contemporary/Colonial style bedroom set up in the Eichholtz style (Theo Eichholtz is a Dutch merchant turned designer who has pioneered his own style that is a coveted trend in the world of modern design). The bed is classic in dark mahogany wood. To make it more innovative we selected “flightcase” old-style luggage in vintage brown leather as side tables and a chest of drawers. The bed linen has plain cotton fabric along with a flower-patterned blanket that matches the wallpaper. A modern steel side table matches a classic, comfortable chair in linen for the small seating area. An armchair in the bedroom is always perfect for a coffee break, a reading corner or just as a decorative piece. The pouf in front of the bed can be used in many ways. Accessories, as usual, are very important and can change the whole appearance of a room.
Style 4: Ralph Lauren Home
Key elements: leather, animal prints, tone on tone
For this room, we selected elegant pieces from Ralph Lauren Home. The bed is the most important focal point in the room, upholstered in luxury leather and enriched with nail trim; the bed linen is, in keeping with the latest fashion trends, animal patterned. The small side table is a Neo-Classic piece in carved wood. For the seating area we created a contrast in the style introducing more contemporary pieces – leather chairs with mirrored chrome arms and base, as a well leather coffee table, to give a different feel to the room. Steel is a dramatic detail on bookshelves in rosewood finish. The colours are tone on tone, neutral but they create a sophisticated look.
Keep your cool this summer
Designers share their tips for creating a fresh, calm and beautiful bedroom as the temperature rises. From choosing linens to lights, pillows to paint colours, here’s how to turn your room into your haven from the heat
Rama Turkmani Mouton
Dubai-based interior designer
Bedding It\'s time for a summer feel as the heat is on. What your bed needs is a new full set of bed linens in pure white. Crisp white bed sheets and pillow covers instantly give your bed - and bedroom - the five-star look. And remember, nothing beats 100 per cent Egyptian cotton. Also upgrade your pillows with a pair for sleeping, a pair of Euro-size shams, and a pair of standard-size shams. You\'ll be amazed to see how smart and posh your bed looks.
For a brighter, more vibrant look, add throws in your favourite summer colours. Place a few bright blankets, folded, at the end of the bed keeping the rest of the bedscape in white. Add new accent pillows on your bed.
Accessories Make space on your dresser or table for a vase and fill it regularly with fresh white lilies or your favourite flowers. Stock the night stand with a few of your favourite magazines or books. Books create a calming and grounded mood.
Walls Look at your walls and if they are busy try to simplify them. For a more ambitious approach, remove everything from the walls, repaint them in white except for the wall behind your bed, which can be in an accent colour or accent wallpaper. Add a large artwork, or a collage of your favourite photographs on one of the walls.
Lighting Lighting is very important, it is what makes good hotel rooms look relaxing. Add swing-arm lamps by the bed; they offer wonderful reading light and create a relaxing ambiance. Add scented candles or potpourri in your accent colour to a niche in the room.
Design and product developer at THE One
Bedding Recreate a crisp hotel bedding look with pristine white ironed sheets, pillowcases and quilt covers. Go for down or fluffy-looking quilts and cushions. Hotel rooms are never cluttered, so keep your bedroom clutter-free.
Furniture Use a pretty chest of drawers as a bedside table to keep your necessities within arm\'s reach and store bigger items in a fabulous-looking freestanding cabinet.
Candles Use scented candles in your favourite fragrance and make it your or your family\'s very own signature scent. It will give you the feeling of ‘being home\' every time you enter the room.
Create a corner Invest in a small desk with a quirky chair or stool and place a mirror above it to create depth. Use this as a dressing table or to showcase your favourite things, such as a selection of perfume bottles and candles or books and special stationery. Enhance the cosy, relaxed atmosphere with the sound of music.
Gloria De Filippo-Fakih
Design team leader at Ethan Allen
Aroma Add fragrance to the room with fresh flowers.
Walls Paint the walls in a deep but uplifting colour then use all-white bed linen to contrast beautifully with the wall colour and lend the bed a forever fresh feeling.
Furniture Add a cosy reading chair, an ottoman and side table if possible. Try to pick small furniture for your bedroom that has an antique, or hand-painted look, as it lends character to the room. Add small area rugs, especially if the floor surface is hard as in ceramic, wood or marble. This is a simple way to add pattern and colour but also cut down on sound in the room.
Lighting Lighting defines space with an amazing beauty. Make sure you have both ambient lighting and overhead lighting that can be adjusted to create different moods.
Gardening Install a water feature outside an open door or window if you have a patio or balcony off your bedroom. Its soothing sound will help you relax. If a garden opens out next to your bedroom, add flowering plants that will attract birds. It is a changing artwork in motion.
Windows Frame your windows with luxurious fabrics. The bedroom is a perfect space for window treatments to puddle on the floor.
Pillows Pillows, pillows, pillows... Soft, comfy, big, overstuffed, with trims and tassels to throw on top of your bed. Fill your pillow with a lavender sachet, for peaceful sleep.
Executive housekeeper at Crowne Plaza Dubai-Deira
Bedding Invest in a good mattress that fulfils all the criteria of feel, look, durability and orthopaedic comfort. High thread count bed linen ranging from 280-300 cotton is the best option for all skin types. Light-coloured bed sheets work better than dark. Add throws and runners instead of a bed cover, and a darker shade will protect the bed sheets and enhance the look of the bed.
Pillows Pillows are like the face of the bed. Euro pillows/large standard pillows with shams are best to uplift the look and act as good backdrop on the bed. A combination of a different-sized pillows makes the bed look comfortable.
Maintenance One of the important points to keep in mind while designing a bedroom is that it should be easy to maintain and clean. Avoid over-designed furniture or artwork that needs cleaning in crevices.
Curtains Curtains must have blackout material and drapes should close with an overlap to shut out the light.
Lighting The last thing you want to do when all tucked up in bed is get up and switch off a light. Install a three-line switch next to the bedside lamp so you can turn off the lights easily.
Aroma Fragrance your room with lavender sprays on your pillow, scented candles or fresh flowers.
Interior designer Bloomingdale\'s Home
Style Choose a style and main colours you really like. For inspiration, look for your favourite style in magazines, shops, in the hotels you visit. Coordinate the main items, which are bed and bedside table, with the accessories and materials that are already in your room such as tiles and marble. Wallpaper, curtains and bed linen should be coordinated by colour and pattern. With patterned wall paper use plain fabric curtain or vice versa, then you will have a more elegant result.
Colours If you like extrovert colours or patterns use them on the wall behind a plain colour headboard. Choose warm and neutral colours for the main items and play with colourful accessories.
Bookshelves Arrange a comfortable space; the layout should not be too busy or over-accessorised. You need a place that helps you relax. Keep the room tidy and simple. Introduce a bookshelf; it is a nice way to bring to your bedroom the books and magazines that you prefer, as well as photos in frames and souvenirs from your travels.
Design director at And So To Bed
Bedding The bed should take centre stage. It should always look sumptuous and inviting, piled high with pillows and cushions. Everything should be soft and luxurious. Layers of finishing touches could include silk bedcovers and throws in cashmere or faux fur; use these to dress the bed or even a bedroom chair or sofa.
Colours Colour helps to set the scene; choose a palette of related colours and layer them and maybe introduce a single contrast colour to create drama. Hotel bedrooms often use really dramatic wallpaper on a single wall to create a mural effect. This works especially well on the wall behind the bed.
Lighting Lighting in the bedroom is really important as it helps create the right degree of lushness and opulence - opt for beautiful lamps and a dimmer switch so that you can alter the mood at will. Big bedside tables are a must-have. They ‘frame\' the bed and can be dressed with opulent lamps.
Seating areas A comfortable seating/relaxing area in the bedroom will add to the boutique look.
Mirrors Hotel bedrooms always make the most of reflective surfaces such as glass and mirrors. These introduce luxurious sparkle and can help illuminate darker corners of the room. An en suite bathroom is a must, but ideally so is a separate dressing area. This keeps the bedroom spacious and uncluttered.
Music Other touches to help create the most sumptuous environment are music, flowers and fragrance.
Colours Keep the colour palette neutral for extreme elegance. Choose one base colour and one co-ordinated colour. Paint the ceiling in a slightly lighter or washed version of the base colour to give the room a more intimate look. Monochromatic colour palettes allow you to use bursts of colour and sheen in areas where you need to - such as pillows and cushions - without detracting from the overall elegance.
Functionality Pay attention to the functionality of the room. Divide your bedroom into different zones. For example, where your bed is placed, the surrounding area should be clutter-free. If you have a corner or an area away from the bed that can be turned into a seating area with a side table and a lamp, that gives the room an added dimension.
Knick-knacks Say no to too many knick-knacks. Choose just a few favourite pieces and place them strategically. Keep surfaces of tables, cabinets and other furniture relatively free of clutter.
Bedding The bed is the focal point in your bedroom. Use the best-quality bed linen you can afford (the higher the thread count, the better the quality). Mix the textures on your bed by adding plenty of plush pillows of various sizes.
Mirrors Place a large decorative mirror or an interesting painting on the wall next to your seating or relaxation area. This creates a second area where you can relax or read before sinking into that inviting bed.
Lighting Install an opulent chandelier, matching bedside lamps and wall sconces to give the room layered lighting.