Groves & Co. Brings Subtle Luxury to an Executive Suite for Michael Kors
A fast pace and high pressure are mainstays in the world of fashion superstar Michael Kors and his husband, fashion designer Lance Le Pere. But they like their surroundings understated and serene. For years, they have been drawn to the layered modernism of Groves & Co., which designed their three residences in New York and Florida. When it came time to renovate the 2,000-square-foot executive suite where Kors and Le Pere work, they asked Russell Groves to bring his subtle luxury there as well.
In the same building as the Manhattan headquarters of Michael Kors, the clothing and accessories company, which recently acquired Versace for approximately $2 billion, the office consists of four main areas arranged in an enfilade: reception, conference room, and an office each for Kors and Le Pere, who is the creative director of the women’s collection.
“Unlike his public persona, Michael’s personal aesthetic is quite pulled back,” Groves begins. “He works with color all day long, so he requested a neutral space.” The walls and ceiling are painted white; black and grays appear in flooring and furniture, Groves playing with textures and finishes for visual interest. Walnut, oak, Italian marble, glass, and stainless steel compose the materials palette, with faux fur blankets and pillows from the Michael Kors Collection and wool and leather details adding softness. Classic furnishings by the likes of Charles and Ray Eames and Florence Knoll are rooted in mid-century modernism.
The result is a calculated visual palate cleanser. “Russell immediately understood the combination of efficiency, elegance, comfort, and personality that are so important for our work environment,” Kors states. But simplicity, Groves suggests, is actually hard to engineer. “It’s like a fashion show,” he says. “Behind the screen it’s utter chaos. But when the model walks down the runway, it looks effortless.”
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