Interiors insider: Fernanda Semler, Botanique

 

‘The most common decorating mistake
is trying hard to make everything match,’ says design entrepreneur Fernanda Semler who opened the luxury hotel Botanique
near Sao Paolo in Brazil last Autumn. She tells Annie Deakin about taking design
risks, interior trends and what is post-luxury.

When you are decorating a home, it's all about… the energy and style of the people who are living and using the spaces. For a hotel the idea is to surprise and create interesting but intimate spaces.

I'm always searching for… items in the decor that have the right mixture of concept and innovation.

My design philosophy is… post-luxury. It’s about what comes after the brands and over-charging that has taken the world by storm.

The most unusual interior I have created is… the interior moor-cum-monastery garden inside my beach house in Alagoas in northern Brazil.

To decorate, you need to… take risks, challenge colors and texture and still keep an eye on what's real and trends that will not dissipate with time.

Every space has… it's own life, and is eager to tell you a story.

The key difference between decorating a home or hotel is… the flux of diversified clientéle.

The last hotel I stayed in was… Nuss Hotel. It is a reformed convent in the centre of Palermo Soho in Buenos Aires. It’s a very trendy and fun district. Before that, we stayed in Twin Farms in Vermont, a very sophisticated and understated retreat. There is incredible art on every wall and - what I appreciate the most - invisible and efficient service.

The most beautiful hotel in the world is… Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur.

My favourite cities for buying furniture and art are… Copenhagen and Vienna.

When I start a project I… spend a lot of time in the space itself, looking at its empty voids. That's when a film begins, in my head, with the place coming to life. Intuition is king in design, more so than creativity.

For style advice, I call… my Austrian friend and great scenographer Katja Klopf in Vienna. Also - Alice Ferraz – a wise fashion professional who guides on what is just a trend and what will carry on.

For inspiration, I turn to… How To Spend It, Monocle, Portal Pitanga, Adelia Borges, Bazaar, Bamboo (Brazil) and last but not least House & Garden.

My favourite interior trend is… handcrafted pieces with a designer twist.

I hate…. the endlessly repeating minimalist scene, with marble, sunk lighting, coffee and black colouring, plate glass; it is all ad nauseam.

I am excited by… the combination of traditional organic materials and forms with contemporary ones. I like eternal colors, such as white, gold, beige, brown and black always sprinkled with strong and lively ones. Red, mauve and sienna are my favorites.

Annie Deakin is interiors writer for sofa and interior design website mydeco.com.

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: 3rd Line Virtualisation, Windows & Server Engineer

£40000 - £47000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A 3rd Line Virtualisation / Sto...

Recruitment Genius: Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Service Engineer

£26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A successful national service f...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive / Sales - OTE £25,000

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Fixed Term Contract

£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We currently require an experie...

Day In a Page

Syria civil war: Meet the military commander who says his soldiers will not rest until every inch of their war torn country is free of Islamist 'terrorists'

‘We won’t stop until Syria is back to normal’

Near the front lines with Islamist-controlled towns where Assad’s troops were besieged just last month, Robert Fisk meets a commander confidently preparing his soldiers for battle
Fifa corruption: Strip Qatar of the World Cup? Not likely

Strip Qatar of the World Cup? Not likely

But if a real smoking gun is found, that might change things, says Tom Peck
Twenty two years later Jurassic Park series faces questions over accuracy of the fictional dinosaurs in it

Tyrannosaurus wrecked?

Twenty two years on, Jurassic Park faces questions over accuracy
The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation may undermine Hillary's chances

The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation...

... and how it may undermine Hillary's chances in 2016
Genes greatly influence when and how many babies a woman will have, study finds

Mother’s genes play key role in decision to start a family

Study's findings suggest that human fertility is still evolving
12 best olive oils

Extra-virgin, cold-press, early-harvest, ultra-premium: 12 best olive oils

Choosing an olive oil is a surprising minefield. Save yourself the hassle with our handy guide
Rafa Benitez Real Madrid unveiling: New manager full of emotion at Bernabeu homecoming

Benitez full of emotion at Bernabeu homecoming

There were tears in the former Liverpool manager’s eyes as he was unveiled as Real Madrid coach. But the Spaniard knows he must make tough decisions if he is to succeed
England can win the Ashes – and Elvis Presley will present the urn

England can win the Ashes – and Elvis will present the urn

In their last five Test, they have lost two and drawn two and defeated an India side last summer who thought that turning up was competing, says Stephen Brenkley
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)