Although he has an impressive background in commercial development and the fashion industry, designer Bradley Bayou says his heart remains in real estate. As a child, the owner of Los Angeles-based Bradley Bayou Design would help his mother rearrange the house. But it wasn’t until a friend approached him to do his home that he would make the leap to interiors.
WRITTEN BY JEANINE MATLOW PHOTOGRAPHY BY BLAKE MARVIN AND JOSHUA MCHUGH
That project led to others like this gem nestled in the Hollywood Hills. Located in one of LA’s hottest neighborhoods, the 5,500-square-foot ranch-style home boasts spectacular views of the city and is close to everything, says Bayou. Because the homeowners admired his style, the designer was given carte blanche to do what he does best. Bayou feels incredibly fortunate to be in this line of work and it shows in the meticulous details he brings to the table. Initially, this house was an empty shell that was in the midst of a renovation. “We picked it up from that point,” says Bayou, who describes the newly remodeled interiors as “world modern,” a sophisticated mix of midcentury and international finds. “I travel a lot, and everything influences me. I got that from fashion.” This effortless blend of old and new pieces from around the globe fills the home with artistic flair. “If I can’t find it, I design it,” says Bayou who lets the stylish environment slowly reveal itself. “I really believe in unveiling, not walking through the front door and getting it,” he says. “The way the home is shaped where you enter one area and then another, it’s shown in bits and pieces. There’s a lot of drama that way.”
He also likes to include a cocoon. “I always put a room where people can congregate and get cozy and escape,” says Bayou. Here, it’s a screening room that can accommodate the homeowners or twenty guests. Red-velvet blackout curtains provide a nod to historic Hollywood with the same fabric found at local movie theaters. Zebrawood walls with silver channels surround glamourous objects like a 200-year-old Chinese table, Art Deco chairs, and a vintage Italian bar.
In one area of the grand room, a white-onyx fireplace faces a midcentury Italian coffee table and a pair of sofas designed by Bayou. Off-white Venetian plaster walls throughout have a bit of sheen to them. “It gives a real warmness that paint doesn’t give. It makes the walls feel heavy and thick,” he says.
Glitter art by Mary Corse illuminates the dining room as does the midcentury Italian light fixture. The round table, which was designed by Bayou, is surrounded by Edward Wormley for Dunbar chairs covered in off-white cowhide. “At night the painting glitters like the view outside,” says the designer about the space that overlooks the City of Angels below. By day, heavy gauze draperies allow natural light to filter through the windows.
Zebrawood cabinetry sets the tone in the custom kitchen where white Carrara marble covers the countertops and backsplash tiles are made from stainless steel. Swivel stools saddle up to the island while limestone floors provide the perfect contrast against the wood. Upper cabinets with frosted-glass doors reach the high ceilings found throughout the house.
In the master bedroom, the well-executed mix continues with a generous section of handsome paneling behind the bed that came from a midcentury office building that was demolished. The olive-green leather headboard complements a plum-lacquer nightstand designed by Bayou.
It doesn’t get any better than the magnificent master bathroom that stops you in your tracks with its brilliant juxtaposition of a modern bathtub edged with 200-year-old wood from China. A strategically placed faucet fills the tub from above where the curved ceiling resembles a giant stone wave, and pebble floors add another layer of texture.
Bayou also created the glorious outdoor spaces that feature an infinity hot tub that spills down into the swimming pool. As he explains, the colors for the home are based on the natural landscape. “I want the feel to come inside. With the amazing views, you really want to optimize that and make those the paintings,” he says.
The scenic retreat offers the best of both worlds as it can be party ready at a moment’s notice and perfection for a quiet night at home, thanks to Bradley Bayou, a designer who doesn’t miss a beat when faced with the challenging task of outfitting a home. It seems he’s finally found his true calling