Old-World Charm Mixes With Bohemian Style in This New Boutique Hotel

Old-World Charm Mixes With Bohemian Style in This New Boutique Hotel

By Michele Koh Morollo
Interior design maven Kelly Wearstler fuses vintage European patterns with contemporary style in this beautiful San Francisco hotel.

Dubbed "the presiding grande dame of West Coast interior design" by The New Yorker, interior designer and author Kelly Wearstler has worked her magic yet again with the San Francisco Proper, a luxury hotel by Proper Hotels & Residences. 

The hotel is located in the city's hip Mid-Market neighborhood. The historic building, which is cladded in brick, stone, and terracotta, was originally built in 1926 by Albert Pissis, an acclaimed local architect. 

The local firm Hornberger + Worstell recently repurposed the iconic building, transforming it into a 131-room boutique hotel. 

To develop the hotel's design concept, Kelly Wearstler—who was responsible for the interior public areas, restaurants, and guest rooms—created a narrative of a bohemian woman. 

"I conjured an extensive backstory for the hotel. "You’re in this cool bohemian woman’s home, and it’s like a series of living rooms," Wearstler explains. "This woman lives there with a black cat called Charmaine, who hangs out on the rooftop, and you are just lingering in her eclectic, artful salon—perhaps waiting for her."

Luxe furniture by designers such as Jean Royere, Gio Ponti, and Adolf Loos inspired the unique look of the hotel’s rooftop lounge.

Aesthetics from various eras influenced the design, which harmonizes contemporary sensibilities with old-world charm. 

The lobby salon has been arranged like a series of living rooms, and includes one-of-a-kind artwork and furnishings.

Wearstler combined custom furniture, fabrics, lighting, and wallcoverings with vintage pieces from Paris, Milan, and San Francisco to weave history into the stylish and colorful modern spaces.

Paintings by local artists, including Joe Ferriso and Jonathon Anzalone, are housed in the lobby. 

"Placing four patterns together in a single room was a way to modernize these classic papers, and give depth and dimension to each guest room," Wearstler adds. "The mix of textures and natural materials complement the patina of the original building, while also infusing a touch of modern wit and comfort."

The intimate dining room is furnished with elements from an array of modernist styles.

Inspired by vintage graphics from a variety of European countries, Wearstler custom designed 32 original patterns exclusively for the hotel.

For contrast, different colored tiles have been integrated in the bathroom floor and walls.

Oak floors provide the guest rooms with a rich, warm feel.

One of the rooms features stylish bunk beds, which are perfect for kids.

Wearstler states that her goal with the San Francisco Proper was to create an updated version of a European salon—a hotel with "a very residential setting that evokes the super comfortable, artful living spaces of the past." 

Project Credits: 

 Architecture: Hornberger + Worstell

Interior design: Kelly Wearstler

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