Tour a Leading Collector’s Inimitable London Dwelling

For de la Cruz, who grew up in a household of art collectors, coexisting with gigantic, museum-worthy works of art is absolutely nothing unusual. Her moms and dads are Carlos and Rosa de la Cruz, the Cuban creators of Miamis de la Cruz Collection, a modern art museum in the Design District. In the just recently refurbished late-1800s home she shares with her partner and, intermittently, her kids (de la Cruz is the mother of 4 young boys: two teenagers who are at boarding school in the U.K. and two 20-somethings who live in the U.S), these art work take center stage.The architects working for de la Cruz gutted the existing kitchen area, which had been remodeled in the 1980s and was “little and impractical,” and put it inside a boxlike structure within one of the large reception spaces.” Art collector and designer Rosa de la Cruz lives with her partner in a vast Victorian apartment in Londons Knightsbridge area.

Rosa de la Cruz might live in a quintessentially British building– among the old Victorian estates of Knightsbridge, some of which have actually been converted into large apartments– but the interiors of her home are far from standard. “People are taken aback when they walk in,” says the precious jewelry and interior designer of her gallery-like reception spaces. “London doesnt tend to have white spaces unless its an extremely modern-day building, and after that to see these huge paintings on the walls, its extremely unforeseen here.” For de la Cruz, who grew up in a household of art collectors, existing together with enormous, museum-worthy works of art is absolutely nothing uncommon. Her parents are Carlos and Rosa de la Cruz, the Cuban creators of Miamis de la Cruz Collection, a modern art museum in the Design District. Influenced by her art-filled upbringing, de la Cruz started purchasing pieces on her own before she ended up college. Over the previous 3 years, her collection has actually grown to include lots of paintings by the likes of Chris Ofili, Damien Hirst and Laura Owens, artists who at one time or another specified contemporary arts zeitgeist. In the recently renovated late-1800s house she shows her partner and, intermittently, her children (de la Cruz is the mom of four boys: 2 teenagers who are at boarding school in the U.K. and two 20-somethings who reside in the U.S), these art work take center stage.The designers working for de la Cruz gutted the existing cooking area, which had been renovated in the 1980s and was “not practical and small,” and put it inside a boxlike structure within among the huge reception spaces. A custom-made table and bench were painted black, contrasting with Jasper Morrisons “Hi Pad” white-leather chairs and stools. The vintage ceiling light is a Serge Mouille design.
A Thomas Houseago painting of 4 ghostly figures greets visitors at the entryway. It is nine feet high and 6 feet large, making the vintage Philip Arctander “clam” chairs on either side appearance almost small. Yes, the scale and visual effect of many of the paintings is outsized, however that does not indicate the furniture is an afterthought. De la Cruz is also a collector of midcentury objects (her focus is on 1950s home furnishings by Jean Royère, Charlotte Perriand, Jean Prouvé and other French masters) and she has thoroughly chosen each purchase in order to create a discussion between art and design. “If you stroll through the house, every space has a different curation because of the art,” she discusses. “My ultimate objective was to make all the components speak with each other.” In the sun-flooded household space, a painting by Brazilian artist Beatriz Milhazes, rupturing with circular shapes that are at romantic and once psychedelic, harmonizes with a set of “Copacabana” easy chair by Mathieu Matégot, their curved tubular frames covering a round seat. And in the formal dining area, a series of Jean Royère “croisillon” chairs with crisscrossed oak backs are a perfect match for an inkjet-on-canvas work by Wade Guyton illustrating two black Xs. These vast spaces, in addition to the cozier four bed rooms in the back of the 3,700-square-foot house, will be featured in a Rizzoli book by Alex Eagle titled More Than Just a House: At Home with Collectors and Creators, out in October. The book looks into de la Cruzs many ventures, that include an eponymous precious jewelry line released with former Harpers Bazaar fashion director Tierney Horne, a burgeoning style practice, and an ever-growing collection of striking artworks and midcentury furnishings. “People walk into my house and say youre a minimalist,” de la Cruz quips. “But Im not, Im a collector at heart.” Art collector and designer Rosa de la Cruz copes with her partner in a vast Victorian apartment in Londons Knightsbridge area. Her striking, large-scale modern art work take spotlight in the home, whose reception rooms were painted white to produce a gallery-like atmosphere. “The anchor here is the Beatriz Milhazes work, one of the first pieces I purchased 30 years back,” says de la Cruz of the brilliant painting hanging on the household rooms right wall. “There are lots of circles and colors throughout the space; I create threads that cross areas, getting concepts, in some cases unconsciously.”