March, 2017


Built for a family of five – a couple, twin daughters and a son – the Sperber Home in Point Dume is the ultimate testament to what great design, décor and landscaping can do to transform a once unattractive plot into something majestic

The home is a complete remodel of a house that has poor South Western style architecture and décor from the 1980s. Says Martyn Lawrence Bullard, “The design brief was to make the house, originally a small adobe structure, into a modern day family home, with Mediterranean flavour and easy, indoor/outdoor beach living and flow.” The house was almost completely torn down, rooms were reconfigured, windows were replaced with huge metal frames and tiled flooring was replaced with French White Oak in pale grey tones. Martyn elaborates, “To give the house patina, I used distressed white French Oak to clad walls and floors, warming up the space, yet retaining the beach vibe. Antique fireplaces from France and Spain ground the rooms and provide warmth and glow on the chilly winter nights in Malibu. Soft paint colours, pale blues and greens, reflect the ocean and blue skies of the locale and make the home feel airy and friendly.” A mix of massangis limestone and marbles have been used on other surfaces and an 18th century stone fireplace and bookcases have been added to create character in the home. With the help of architect, Doug Burge, the team has also reworked the spaces adding extra guest rooms, a gym, spa and family room.

World-renowned interior designer, product designer and prominent television personality, Martyn Lawrence Bullard, talks to CW Interiors about his design inspiration behind the spectacular Sperber Home in Point Dume, Malibu.

The interiors of the house are easy and pleasing to the eyes with the use of comfortable soft furnishings, modern mid-century antique pieces and quirky lighting fixtures around the house to give it an eclectic vibe. Batik fabrics from Martyn’s own product line have been used; a mix of natural fabrics and raw woven ones make up wall coverings in the home and custom design tribal rugs adorn the rooms. Martyn shopped from all over the world including Paris, Los Angeles and London to get the look absolutely perfect. “Most of my inspirations come from travel. I extensively travel the world for work and always find inspiration from each new country I visit. An understanding of

different cultures and their history, acts as the backbone to my design work and often culminates in eclectic, mixed interiors, which I always prefer. As in this home, objects from India, Morocco, Sweden, Portugal, Spain and France blend perfectly with the more casual Californian style in a high meets low experience”, says Martyn.

Martyn also goes the extra mile by making sure the family’s likes, dislikes and preferences are perfectly incorporated into their spaces. For the kids’ rooms, he interviewed the youngsters to get a sense of what they liked—the twin girls went for pinks, purples and disco balls while the boy expressed his love for surfing and Hawaii. To translate this, the boy’s walls were painted with surfing themed pictures and furniture was made from driftwood.

Further, being the family behind the ValleyCrest landscaping business, outdoor spaces to entertain guests was of utmost importance. “The clients love to entertain and the house was designed around many gardens and patios that offer a variety of entertaining options”, explains Martyn.

The end result is a home that embodies outdoor California living at its best. Beautiful tropical plantations along with custom made furniture for the outdoor add the right amount of character to the external spaces. Personally, however, Martyn’s favourite corner remains the dining room. “My favorite space has to be the dining room. I love how the walls are completely covered in a sepia batik fabric

which creates a splendid and cozy room, creates a less formal atmosphere and yet allows the family a versatile space to dine as it connects directly with the outdoor dining area”, he says. Heavily inspired by his travels, Martyn’s own product line is a reflection of modern-day things he would like to own himself. “I am passionate about creating and live to see how others use the things I have designed”, he says. Constantly juggling the different professional roles in his life – designer, businessman and television personality – a strong team and aligned processes help to keep things moving. But no matter what, Martyn’s love for design always takes centre stage. “The TV work has to fit into my design schedule, as the design and my clients are my first priority always”, signs off Martyn.

The TV work has to fit into my design schedule, as the design and my clients are my first priority always.

MARTYN’S FAVOURITES Favourite Architects/Designers: Sir John Soane, Tadao Ando, Richard Neutra. Renzo Mongiardino is my design icon. David Hicks, Jacques Grange and the late David Collins. Favourite Architectural Structure: The ancient buildings of Rome, especially the Pantheon, are always so breathtaking; the foundation Louis Vuitton in the Bois De Boulogne is spectacular; I am a huge fan of the late Zaha Hadid’s work and the wild and energetic structures of the Danish Architect Bjorke Engels.