Friday, March 20, 2015

Designer Celerie Kemble's Beachfront Get-A-Way in the Dominican Republic

In the clubhouse at Playa Grande Beach Club: Designer Celerie Kemble, husband Boykin Curry and their children Rascal, Wick and Zinnia

As you know from my last few posts I am craving spring: spring gardens, spring dishes, and now a spring vacation, anywhere warm and relaxing.  Within an hour of posting the beautiful Palm Beach Dodi Thayer lettuce ware dishes for Tory Burch, I saw this beachfront getaway designed by Celerie Kemble.   It was a breath of fresh air...  So grab a Coke-Zero or an Evian, kick your shoes off and join me in designer Celerie Kemble's Dominican Republic getaway, with a laid back tropical atmosphere and Caribbean colors ... along with curated items to inspire a little island life into your home.  Enjoy!

Paradise knocked, and interior designer Celerie Kemble and husband Boykin Curry persuaded investor friends to answer yes to purchase 2,000 jungled acres along the Domincan Republic's northern shore bordered by a huge beach with lapis blue Caribbean waters called Playa Grand.   Kemble then designed a resort complete with a clubhouse, cabanas, and bungalows.

"It was like we'd been dropped down into paradise." 

-Celerie Kemble

Clubhouse great room

In the compound's clubhouse Kemble painted the 22 foot ceiling pale aqua, and paved the floors with handmade tiles in a pink, navy-blue, and yellow pattern.  The room is a mix of softly colored fabrics, vintage Indonesian ikats and shell-encrusted chairs.

"I think interiors that are well designed tell people how to behave." 
 "Here, I want them to know they're supposed to be barefoot..."

 - Celerie Kemble


 It's all in the mix of fabrics, and Bailey & Griffin's Scène Chinoise fabric for Duralee makes it easy.

The Kemble-Curry residence named Casa Guava

Ten years later, her own oceanfront home at the Playa Grande Beach Club named Casa Guava, a delicate "French Colonial" topped by a pale-green metal roof, gingerbread trimmings and porches. All of the fanciful fretwork was cut by an artisans hand.

"I wanted something that felt romantic yet wild." 

-Celerie Kemble

Ceilings and floors are painted in a Ladurée palette of macaron pastels.  While the rooms are filled with heirlooms, pieces from Kemble's line for Henredon, vintage wicker chairs, flea-market finds, chic but quirky metal furnishings, and light fixtures give a decidedly fresh, relaxing, put your feet up feel.


 In hues forget-me-not and lime stone-and-enamel clasps Bulgaris limited-edition Icona 10 crocodile handbags will keep you in the island mood while shopping.

In the Living Room: Kemble's slipper chairs are from her line for Henredon

"Celerie throws together a crazy combination of new and old and high and low," 

says her husband Boykin

 "but rather than looking like a cluttered mess, 

it all feels right, as if the objects had been looking for each other."


New for Spring 2015 and perfect for adding in a mix of soft colors Aileurs bedding by Yves Delorme is a pretty, winsome garden design.

Cabanas by the New Jersey Barn Co. flank the resorts swimming pool.


Janus et Cie's Quadrati outdoor 3 seat love seat is latticed and modern and perfect beside your pool, in the garden or on a patio.

Dinning Room:  Old cabana painting frame the folding doors, vintage garden chairs surround the dining table; and D. Porthault linens dress the four-poster bed in the master bedroom beyond.


For a playful paradise feel mix and match Voyage en Ikat Limoges by Hermès's

Guest Room

Latticework details play with the tropical light, splintering it into dappled patterns in the guest room.  A fresh beautiful guest room to relax and dream in.

"I wanted the whole place to feel saturated with sun and salty air."

Celerie Kemble


Add pop of color or keep it white with Pier One's Peacock Armchair

Celerie and her daughter Zinnia

I hope it's lovely (and getting warm) where you are...

xx Rié

Photo credit: Douglas Friedman AD April 2015


  1. This home is incredible! And I love the Hermes plates! The prettiest blog I've seen all day!!
    xo. Leslie
    Segreto Finishes

    1. Wow, thank you! Coming from your talented self that means so much! xx Rié

  2. This was such a fun post! I love that she is so unabashedly unafraid of color and/or pattern!!

  3. warm? far from it as we just received 5" of snow.......oh well, articles like this brighten the day!

    1. Debra, 5 inches! The sun is coming, sending it your way! I couldn't find your email address so I will ask it here: beginning in April I want to start a new series called LIVE BEAUTIFULLY. I am asking different designers and visionaries to answer the question, “What does living beautifully mean to you?” or “How do you live beautifully?” It could be as long of a list as you desire, or a short sentence. I will include pictures that you provide, or add them myself, plus a link to your blog. Oh by the way I added your blog to my Signature Sites and Blogs. Let me know. Rié


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