Our Visit to the Proper Hotel in San Francisco
As you might have seen on our Insta stories last week, the EHD team took a trip up to San Francisco to go to the Pinterest headquarters for a special content creators conference (which was awesome and I’m SO excited to get it all amped up). We stayed at the Proper hotel which was absolutely stunning. They reached out a while ago for Brian and me to have a getaway, but when we needed a place to stay for this conference, we realized this was better and worked out so well. Sara brought her camera and we were able to capture my room and the lobby/restaurant to show you the design insanity that is this hotel.
Proper was designed by Kelly Wearstler and like all her work, it’s CRAZY in such an inspiring way.
It’s Art Deco meets ’80s with modern amenities and takes an incredible amount of design risks. There are some things that had I seen individually, I would have deemed “ugly.” But together, it was amazing—design magic. It was such a great reminder that when you think outside the trend box and do something exciting, you can create a space that goes beyond anything you see online—good design can dictate and change moods and thus really can control our happiness. Of course, a hotel is an easier venue to execute this kind of risk-taking because it is meant to be a temporary space; no one will live here long term and there really isn’t just “one” client.
I can’t tell you how much this shot of inspiration was needed for our team. The complex cocktail of spirits that came together at the hand of Kelly Wearstler was like a palate cleanser. As designers in a digital world, we are SO stuck behind a computer. We need inspiration but finding it takes time and effort. When found, that inspiration changes your perspective, shifts your norms, breaks your own rules and makes you want to create awe-inspiring spaces.
Soaking in the dining room, visually. was definitely inspiring (the food was awesome, too). The floor, the walls, the light fixtures (which we all stared at for a solid 10 minutes trying to describe), the COLOR, it’s all such a good reminder of how you can customize a space in a way that makes you want to look at every. single. detail.
The team at Proper gave us a discount for our stay, but this post was something that we wanted to do to show you the inspiration that we felt while there. We couldn’t stop talking about it and we’ve been referencing it since.
Before I destroyed my room with clothes and passed out on my bed, Sara shot it (and another guest room) and I’m so glad she did so that I can see the risks that were taken and analyze how we felt about them even after we left.
So many patterns. Yes, they were all different scales but there were SO MANY PATTERNS.
We counted nine (NINE!) black-and-white patterns of different scales. That’s crazy. I would have never done this. I would have definitely said it was too much and even called it “overly-designed.” But when you are in the space, it’s incredible. You can tell that Kelly had fun in hopes that when you stay there you also have fun.
Would I do this in a residential home? Not typically. But here, it worked like magic.
Bold large-scale floral wallpaper + smaller scale wallpaper + medium shade fabric + even smaller sofa fabric + bed textiles: It shouldn’t work, BUT IT’S WONDERFUL.
I’ve been staring at these photos, realizing that all those rules you think should apply, just don’t when done REALLY well. Breaking the mold creates excitement. And the EHD team was EXCITED.
If you are visiting SF, I can’t recommend Proper enough. That city doesn’t have a ton of boutique hotels so I was excited that this was an option. If you are into design, it’s worth a visit, even just for a drink at the bar.
So what do you think? Could you do this in your own home? Or is this kind of design nuttiness best left for a hotel, designed by Kelly Wearstler?
***Photography by Sara Tramp for EHD