L’Auberge Del Mar
Designed by Barclay Butera
Located in Del Mar, California, the Del Mar Race Track-adjacent L’Auberge Del Mar has been a hot spot for Hollywood celebrities throughout its long history. It was fitting, then, that designer Barclay Butera—who is known for a highly regarded classical design aesthetic with a contemporary twist—was chosen as creative director for the recent renovation of the historic hotel. An expert in residential interiors and an admirer of the early Hollywood era, Butera has owned several significant homes, including those of Frank Sinatra, Bette Davis and Desi Arnaz, Jr. Of these properties, Butera is certain of one thing: “I felt like I was respecting their era through their homes,” he reveals.
Butera’s mission at L’Auberge Del Mar was to bring a fresh approach and an air of sophistication to the 120-room hotel that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. “I’ve overseen every aspect of the project, from exterior colors and landscaping, to the rooms’ decoration,” explains the designer. “I gave a very light, comfortable British colonial feel to the entire hotel.” Highlights include a cohesive color palette of celadons and chocolates, along with many of Butera’s signature nautical and abstract prints and original art pieces from artist Mark Whitney. Textures include velvet, mohair, woven silk and wool, and crisp bed linen—all from Barclay Butera Home-branded collections.
Parading Butera’s design philosophy, L’Auberge del Mar is all about indoor and outdoor living alike, touting great outdoor gathering spaces and unobstructed views of the Pacific Ocean. “Each of the ground floor rooms surrounding the pool area has a cabana to extend the room outdoors,” says Butera. The design also evokes the hotel’s original Hollywood era and history, when Bing Crosby, Lucille Ball and Pat O’Brien frequented the hotel and its environs—the Del Mar Fairgrounds and Racetrack, namely. The hotel pays homage to its celebrated past with a montage of black-and-white photos of classic Hollywood visitors who made the hotel a retreat from Los Angeles.