A Delightful Retreat


Massucco Warner transforms a boxy San Francisco apartment into a cozy retreat

The living room furniture covered in fabrics from Holland & Sherry sit atop a rug from Stark Carpet.
Photos by Karyn Millet.
The art in the living room was sourced from Dolby Chadwick gallery.
Photos by Karyn Millet.

“We envisioned a soft, ethereal retreat in the clouds, and it was an easy mark to draw inspiration from all the surrounding beauty, both natural and manmade,” says Julie Massucco Kleiner, co-founder of Massucco Warner on how her firm approached the design of this 2,000-square-foot apartment set high atop Russian Hill. “The apartment has quintessential views of the Bay Area so our goal was to draw you in while adding warmth and coziness to a somewhat boxy concrete space.”

Dining chairs surrounding the banquette are from Quintus. Photos by Karyn Millet.
Inn the kitchen the backsplash is by Waterworks and the stools are from Holly Hunt. Photos by Karyn Millet.

The mid-century building is a landmark in the city so when the clients heard the apartment was open, they jumped at the opportunity to purchase the apartment and convert into a cozy city escape. “They wanted a getaway within the city, with multiple uses in mind—a turnkey space for family members who are visiting from out of town for extended periods, as well as entertaining business associates to an in city retreat from their primary home,” Massucco notes. “The views are pretty magical, and one of the drivers behind our client wanting to purchase a retreat with panoramic views of all the best San Francisco sights!”

Blue Floral Wallcovering by Phillip Jeffries makes an impact in the primary bedroom, the lamps are by Paul Schneider Ceramics.
Photos by Karyn Millet.
In the dressing room, a custom Selenite Mirror by Ron Dier Designs is flanked by Urban Electric Co. sconces. Photos by Karyn Millet.

They enlisted Massucco Warner, McGriff Architecture and Trinity Building Co. to transform the home and add personalized layers of design and comfort that they were accustomed to in their main residence. “The challenge with this project was how to add character,” she notes. “The main spaces lacked significant details such as moldings, and this client has other homes with a ton of architectural interest. Therefore, we leaned into textures and shapes of furnishings and surfaces to layer warmth and added features to make the spaces feel more personal.”

In the primary bathroom, the cabinetry is by Cabinetry is Waterworks and the tile is by Ann Sacks.
Photos by Karyn Millet.
A pair of Lilac ceramic lamps by Hwang Bishop add softness in the guest room. Photos by Karyn Millet.

From the soft blue, gray and neutral hues found throughout, the apartment now feels like a cloud floating atop the San Francisco fog. Massucco notes, “The client was so thrilled when it was completed because this was an exceptionally drawn out project due to the construction limitations during the Pandemic, and it was sheer happiness when we revealed the finished pied-à-terre!”