Monday, March 16, 2009

~Let's Talk About Sex ...Samantha

Inside Samantha's Apartment

Written by: Sheryl Berk

For Samantha, nothing less than a sensational space would do. So when her old neighbors on the Upper East Side objected to her amorous activities at all-hours, she decided to move to the meatpacking district in downtown New York. Jeremy Conway went to work, creating a typical "conversion apartment" for the trend-savvy Ms. Jones. "You find these all over New York," he explains. "They're industrial spaces, maybe a factory or warehouse, and the developer goes in, redoes it, puts in a fabulous kitchen and Voila! Instant apartment."

Of course, Conway makes it sound a lot easier than it is. A great deal of purposeful design and planning went into creating Sam's new abode. "There's voyeurism to it, a lot on display," he says. "With Sam, what else would you expect?"

The Boudoir
"Of course, there's no couch in the main room-just a bed. It's Sam's most lived in piece of furniture, hence it's the star attraction of her living room!" laughs Conway. He and his crew actually built the bed. "It's very large, with a platform and two nightstands on either side that are attached," he says. "And it's on wheels so we could easily move it around the set."

Conway calls Sam's style of decor "The Big Game Hunter Look." There's lots of crimson and sienna-dark, passionate reds that evoke heat and desire. The linens are from Calvin Klein and ABC Carpet and Home. There's even a fireplace. "A nice touch, but you just know that Sam never uses it," Conway says. "Too much work. The best she'll do is light some red candles along the mantel. Besides, if she wants heat, she can generate her own."

To play up the romantic red theme, Conway added a red lacquer gilt Chinese 19th century armoire from Far Eastern Antiques and Arts in NYC. "Besides the color, it's a bit exotic and unusual. Something Samantha would be drawn to."

A Room with a View
Sam's loft had to have large windows, "again, to reinforce her exhibitionist personality," says Conway. "We did a very New York treatment: old, double hung windows that you'd find in an industrial space. And we put them on a corner-so anyone looking in from the street would be sure to get a full view of Sam in action."

A large, full-length 1935 French wall mirror with nickel and brass decor is propped against a wall. "It acts like a third wall in the apartment to break up the space," says Conway. "Light reflects off of it and it gives a sense of depth to the room. But Sam wouldn't really care about what it does to enhance the space-she'd love it because it gave her a great view of what she was doing in bed."

Conway decided to keep the apartment's other accessories to a minimum. "We just added some small upholstered ottomans, a few lamps and prints on the walls." The art work, however, is his favorite find: "They're 18th century illumination prints-like you'd find as chapter headings in old books-from this great store called The Orange Chicken on Franklin Street," he says. "They're a lot of fun."

Kitchen and Bath
The kitchen contains top of the line gear such as a Viking stove and a Gemini sink. "In addition, we brought in a lot of Calvin Klein dishware and Le Cruset pots and pans," says Conway. There's also a great wine rack, stacked with fine vintages. "It all looks very handsome, but it also looks brand new. We wanted to make it pretty obvious that Sam is not a domestic goddess by any means."

A thin veil of curtain is all that separates the bathroom from the boudoir. "Not a problem for her," Conway chuckles. "Sam's not shy." We saw a little more of the tub this season when she and Maria were in a bubble bath. "I was actually glad they filmed a scene in there," he says. "I'm very proud of what we created. There are beautiful acoloramatic slate tiles and a veneered storage unit made from African bubinga wood." Bubinga wood? "Well, it all goes back to that huntress theme," Conway adds. "All the other ladies on the show have an apartment. Sam, she has a lair."