By Priyanka Rajput By Priyanka Rajput | May 12, 2023 | Home & Real Estate HBNY Home Tours
Perched on the 24th floor of the coveted Jenga Tower, this Tribeca home boasts breathtaking views and stunning contemporary design.
In the living room, Phillip Jeffries wallcovering, a vintage rocking chair and artwork by Diego Anya.
According to Francis Toumbakaris, designer and founder of Francis Interiors, finding an interior designer who you love working with is similar to finding a good therapist. “I think the work a designer does is so personal it goes beyond just designing a home,” shares Toumbakaris, adding that just as a therapist helps you understand and address your personal needs, an interior designer understands your lifestyle and creates a space fit for you—and that’s exactly what he hoped to achieve when transforming a stunning two-bedroom Tribeca residence at the Herzog & de Meuron-designed building dubbed the Jenga Tower for its purposefully misaligned look inspired by the game.
Interlude Home swivel chairs complement sleek Arteriors coffee and side tables.
After several years of residing and working in San Francisco, the homeowner, a tech industry executive, decided it was time to trade the sunny West Coast for the charms of the East. She had previously worked with Toumbakaris on two other homes, a charming West Village abode and a dreamy loft on the border of West Village and the Meatpacking District, but after living in the latter through the lockdown, she felt it was time to start afresh. And so, when she found her new home, a 1,668-square-foot luxury condominium, there was no doubt that Toumbakaris would be the one to give it the look she envisioned.
Eye-popping Slim Aarons photographs line the hallway.
For Toumbakaris, a former ballet dancer, designing a home is about more than just aesthetics. It’s about movement. He knows that every object, curve and detail can contribute to a sense of rhythm and add grace to a space. With that in mind, he set out to transform a place that evoked an early-aughts masculine feel into one with softened feminine touches. The idea, Toumbakaris says, “was to play with the existing structures,” several of which were rounded in shape, from the structural column in the living room to the oblong-shaped kitchen counter, and develop a concept around it.
An Arteriors pendant hangs above the kitchen island.
Toumbakaris advises that designing a home is like composing a symphony—every note, every detail and every element must come together in perfect harmony. But what if you only had three months to bring that symphony to life? This was the challenge that Toumbakaris and his team faced when they began the project. The homeowner had to move out of her old home and into the new one, which limied the designer from experimenting. The solution? “We stuck to the basics and prioritized statement pieces that were readily available,” reveals Toumbakaris. “Even though we did not have the ability to, say, change the fabric on a sofa or a bed, we worked with the products we had and then played around with the textures and colors of the wall to add that personal touch.”
A Nuevo Living dining table from Safavieh
From the beginning, Toumbakaris knew that he wanted to play with a monochrome palette and complement it with cream-colored undertones and brass accents for a softer look. “Brass, not shiny or polished, but honed or brushed, always warms up a space,” shares Toumbakaris. So while most of the furnishings, the rug by Surya and the Phillip Jeff ries wall covering are in black and white, the side and coff ee tables by Arteriors features hints of brass, which add a touch of femininity to the living room. But his favorite, he shares, are how the unexpected pieces, like the rocking chair he found at the Design on a Dime charity gala, turned out to be the showstoppers. In the bedroom, “we wanted to give it a luxury boutique hotel look,” he continues. “So we chose a bed where the upholstery expands behind the nightstands and added an oversized dramatic blossom mural by Philip Jeff ries to give it a feeling of grandiose.” At the entryway, a collection of photographs taken by late California artist Slim Aaron are neatly arranged to create a gallery wall. The idea, Toumbakaris shares, was to allow his client to experience Palm Springs while living in a glass tower in New York.
Floor-to-ceiling windows flood the chic bathroom with natural light.
As the homeowner stepped into her newly transformed 24th-floor residence, she exclaimed, “God, you worked your magic again, Francis!” The designer’s mastery of space and attention to detail had helped bring her vision to life. And with plans already in the works for their next project, it’s clear that their collaboration has just begun.
Francis Toumbakaris, Francis Interiors francisinteriors.com
Herzog & de Mueron herzogdemeuron.com
Alexico Group alexicogroup.com
Peter Simone peterbuiltelectric.com
Sofa sectional in living room
Throw pillows in living room
Swivel chair in living room
NUEVO BY SAFAVIEH
Dining table and chairs
Kitchen island pendant
Wall coverings in living room and bedroom
UNIVERSAL FURNITURE - DESIGNED BY NINA MAGON
Bed, nightstand, stool and dresser in bedroom
A Nina Magon bed and nightstand, Surya rug and Phillip Jeffries wallcovering
Photography by: PHOTOGRAPHY BY SEAN LITCHFIELD