Bold and Beautiful


Alison Damonte proves neutral interiors are a thing of the past

In the entry the custom screen was a design collaboration between Alison Damonte, ReCheng Tsang and Kristina Kotlier.
Photos by Bruce Damonte.

“We believe that helping our clients define their genuine style and developing that style through our own perspective is what makes for timeless interior design. We like wild dreams. A bit of fearlessness and irreverence during the design process creates more thrilling spaces—even when restraint finds its way in,” says Alison Damonte of San Francisco-based studio alisondamonte on how she creates her signature bold designs that are warm, welcoming and collected. When hired to transform this 6,000-square-foot home in Hillsborough for a client who is an architect, she and her team were ready to push their client to the edge of her comfort zone. “Just as in life, we believe that this tension creates growth and a more sophisticated, authentic and unique design,” she notes.

In the living room a custom sofa, benches from Gabriel Scott and daybed from Flexform offer ample seating. Photos by Bruce Damonte.
In the fireplace nook, Damonte hung a pendant by Bec Brittan. Photos by Bruce Damonte.

Originally built in the 1970s for a concrete contractor, the client loved the Mid-century style home but had executed a series of renovations to enlarge the floor plan and further connect with the outdoors. “Over the course of several years she created a resort-like, but still very family-friendly home, that included a dedicated playroom for her kids, and a home gym, sauna and cigar room for the adults,” she says. “Her work is so rigorous and thoughtful, We greatly appreciated how exquisitely detailed and executed the renovation was and we learned so much from working with her through the process.”

A custom dining table and Eero Saarinen chairs sit below a vintage pendant in the dining room. The artwork is an original print by Ellsworth Kelly. Photos by Bruce Damonte.
In the kitchen/family room, the sofa is from Flexform and the rug is by Armadillo. Photos by Bruce Damonte.

For the interiors, the client wanted the selections that would complement the architecture, speak to her love of modern design and exude fun. Something Damonte is known for cultivating. “Our work was a combination of joyful exuberance in the casual, family-oriented spaces and quiet sophistication in the public spaces,” she notes. “Materials, textures, color, form and nods to Mid-century design history were always at the forefront of our design choices.”

 Inspired by the vibrancy of the original poolhouse design, the team left the room untouched. Photos by Bruce Damonte.
In the husband’s office sits an Le Corbusier LC2 Sofa a vintage desk and a Discus Pendant Designed by Jamie Gray found at Matter Made. Photos by Bruce Damonte.

Bright tones of red, yellow, pink and orange dance throughout the bedrooms while soothing shades in the main living spaces are enhanced by striking features including a divider made of metal circles, designed by Damonte. “The view from the front door through the main room to the backyard and pool is so classically Mid-century, that we didn’t want to completely obscure it by creating an entry space,” she recalls. “We eventually landed on a custom curtain screen made by local artist ReCheng Tsang that is inspired by Paco Rabanne’s Space Curtains, composed of hand-shaped discs in a combination of glazed and unglazed porcelain, brass and acrylic that are suspended together with small brass hooks allowing the screen to move a bit with a breeze or a passerby.”

The green carpeted stairwell is grounded by the ceiling that is covered in Benjamin Moore’s Blackberry Punch CC-962. Photos by Bruce Damonte.
In the girl’s room a bold yellow wall covered in wallpaper from Elitis features geographic shades by Victoria Hagan from Holland and Sherry. Photos by Bruce Damonte.
In the son’s room a bright red wall is anchored by an Ikea rug and a vintage Corbusier chair. Photos by Bruce Damonte.

While many designers dream of that TV big reveal, most projects are completed in phases. However, when it’s time for the photoshoot, designers get to see the finished product through their own visionary liens. “The shoot is always such a fun ending to a project,” says Damonte. “All of our ideas have gelled, the final touches are in place and the layers of rooms have developed more than we could have ever envisioned in the early design phases. The client was so happy with the final result as was I. This project has really been a career-defining one for me.”