As the globe-trotting Brazilian behind an eponymous architecture and design firm in Sao Paulo, Debora Aguiar understands that modern life can be stressful. So she was elated when hospitality veteran Barry Sternlicht and Richard LeFrak commissioned her to work on interiors at their new brand’s first property, 1 Hotel & Homes South Beach. Slated to open in early 2015, the 425-room oceanfront hotel and 156 full residences serve as an oasis within the action-packed neighborhood. Aguiar’s work suits the space’s use of natural elements and organic materials, as well as the seamless transition between indoor and outdoor settings. So far, units have been purchased by buyers from more than 20 countries. Only 28 prized penthouses remain—mainly because they weren’t released on the market until late this year. Here, Aguiar discusses the project with DuJour.
What are your favorite aspects of this property?
“You’re embraced by a warm, harmonious atmosphere through old washed wood, natural fibers and indirect lighting. You always feel connected to Mother Nature, especially with the amazing views.”
What are the smaller things you did to ensure that connection?
“There’s detail everywhere, from woven textures to river rocks to plants. Everything invites you to touch, to sit, to stay.”
Was the commitment to green design important to you?
“I feel responsible to create green environments, especially since I’m in a position in my career that my actions teach and influence others to practice these initiatives.”
How do you hope it will make an impact?
”We have to show how easy it can be to go green. Unlike most trends that come and go quickly, wellness, nature and coziness are durable, imperishable and profitable. Eco-luxury has staying power.”
2399 Collins Avenue, 1hotels.com