Florida Design

Let There be Light

By Luis R. Rigual | Photography by Kris Tamburello

Proper illumination makes all the difference in a Sunny Isles Beach residence

It was the third thing God created after the heavens and the Earth. And anyone who’s been the unfortunate subject of a photograph taken under its fluorescent form can attest to its power. Simply put, lighting is everything. 

Just ask interior designer Tamara Feldman, whose recent approach to glow in a Sunny Isles Beach vacation condo makes a case for expert illumination. 

The eleventh-floor residence at Turnberry Ocean Club boasts views of the city, the ocean, and the Intracoastal, which means different variations of natural light depending on the time of day. Feldman made the most of this sun abundance in the bedrooms with glossy walls that welcome and reflect the light, creating vibrant spaces in the process. But it was her treatment of electrical lighting features that deserves the credit for bringing the apartment to life. We see this in the living room with a cantilevered ceiling pattern that introduces a sculptural element in the room while providing indirect illumination. Also worthy of note are Feldman’s selections of ornamental lighting. In the dining room that comes in the form of Ochre’s Medusa Bloom Oval chandelier, with blown-glass drops that infuse the space with just the right amount of warmth thanks to its LED technology.

However, the most carefully lit space in the home has got to be the family room, which seems to float depending on which corner you find yourself in. Here, subdued indirect lighting livens a custom wall unit that anchors the TV set and provides shelf space for photographs, books, and objets d’art. “We wanted a space for the family to tell their story,” says Feldman, “and we played with the dimensions of the partitions and cladded certain areas in marble.” Nearby, an origami-like piece of art on the wall gets its own spotlight, but not in the expected way. Rather than from a picture light above the piece, the illumination comes from the back to make the artwork float and blend with the geometry of the space. On the ceiling, making an ornamental statement is Rick Tegelaar’s Meshmatics chandelier, which, as Feldman puts it, “elevates the nature of the humble galvanized steel wire netting by stretching and molding it to three layers of beauty on a glass frame.” 

Together, all these thought-out and carefully executed lighting decisions enhance Feldman’s contemporary aesthetic, and play up the luxurious details of the furniture and accessories from Roche Bobois, The Rug Company, Patricia Urquiola, and Moroso.

“The proper implementation of lighting creates the right depth and height in a space,” says Feldman. “Without the right illumination, you can’t infuse mood, provoke senses, or allow for the eye to appreciate a beautiful room.”

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