Admittedly, Hollywood Regency is probably not the first style you would associate with Soho Home or a Soho House. And yet, traces of the aesthetic lie in the rich textiles and velvet upholstery seen throughout the Houses. Viewed as the counterpart to the screen’s Golden Age, this interiors movement originated in the 1930s and shared an affinity with opulence. From the sets of Hollywood classics to the homes of the stars, decadence was the word.

'The only real freedom we have left is the home, only there can we express anything we want' - William Haines

At the heart of the movement were figures like William Haines and Dorothy Draper. From marginalised actor to successful designer, Haines was a key figure within the movement. Ousted from the industry after refusing to hide his homosexuality, he went on to thrive as an interior and furniture designer to the rich and famous, including his co-star and life-long friend Joan Crawford. His style melded mid-19th century European designs with modernism, creating something glamorous and ostentatious yet somehow refreshing. The scale of his furniture paired with dramatic accents and heavily dressed walls has come to be evocative of the Hollywood Regency style in general. Think velvet chaise longues and plush cushions, perfect for archetypal Hollywood swooning and Scarlett O’Hara levels of drama. Perhaps not so coincidentally, the 1939 film actually borrowed paintings from Haines’ personal collection to adorn the walls of the plantation home.


'The Drab Age is over' - Dorothy Draper

As one of the few female designers of the time to achieve significant commercial success, Draper didn’t shy away from bold and exaggerated design choices: creating an aesthetic that preemptively aligned with Susan Sontag's musings on camp. To imagine a room from her perspective is to be bathed in colour, strong lines and statement flooring, from polished chequered tiles to patterned carpets. The contrast of highly varnished surfaces with plush sofas and textiles was Draper’s interpretation of balance. As one of her greatest commissions, the interiors for the Greenbrier Hotel epitomised her style, lying somewhere between Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining and Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, only with more chintz. Each room more colourful than the last, the grand arches and hallways were belied by playful design. Toeing the line between baroque, modern and lovably kitsch, Draper’s impact on the world of interiors was substantial to say the least. Beyond her private and public commissions, she went on to become a celebrity designer, writing several books on interiors for the average home and coining the phrase 'If it looks right, it is right', empowering the tastes of the individual and encouraging them to trust their instincts.

Contrast is king

Do as Draper did and embrace the contradictions and clashes. Mixing patterns, textures, and finishes gives a space depth, warmth and is far more interesting to the eye.

Trappings and trimmings

Pay attention to the details. Statement pieces like this gilded wheatsheaf table can be softened by layering your spaces with different textiles. Drape fabric from the walls, spread it across floors and throw it over chairs to achieve a lived-in look.

Low-level, high-glamour

One of the lesser known laws of physics: the lower the chair, the comfier it is. Throughout the Houses, the club spaces and bedrooms are dotted with low tufted sofas and chaise longues piled with cushions - because who says comfort can't look good?

More is more

Forgo Coco Chanel's advice and add more. Gilded, exposed pipework is an up-to-date way to embrace the glamour of Hollywood Regency style, while marble basins and fringed velvet footstools never fall out of style.

Soho House West Hollywood

A space on Sunset Boulevard for eating, drinking and meeting, complete with a roof garden and screening room.