Meet Maslina’s Interior Designer Léonie Alma Mason
With roots in Geneva, Germany, and Paris, Léonie Alma Mason’s eye for art can be credited to a childhood centered around traveling and a family fashioned by museums
Léonie graduated with honors from Paris École Camondo in 2011 and began her career as an interior designer in small studios to ensure she could understand the reality of the field.
Léonie opened LA.M Studio in 2014, which boasts a team of four today. The Studio takes on a variety of different projects, both public and private, to ensure that there is always a new challenge ahead. In an effort to keep an open mind, Léonie and her team can devise a variety of spaces, from a charming flat in Paris to a luxury hotel in Croatia. One of the Studio’s most notable projects to date is the five-star Castelbrac hotel in Dinard on the Emerald Coast.
Inspired by the work of international architects such as Carlos Scarpa, Gio Ponti, or Studio KO, Léonie’s work is chic and contemporary, enlivened by contrasting textures, colorful details, carefully selected cloth, warm indirect lighting, and quality materials. Her natural knowledge, past experience, and working relationship with quality craftspeople reveal interiors that are elegant, bold, and timeless.
Léonie’s designs are daring and unusual, yet stay authentic to the climate and environment they are in. From conception to realization, her strict attention to detail, rigorous lines, and fluid movements give life to spaces that are radiant, original, and relaxed, which you can see implemented in the interiors of Maslina Resort.
Where did Léonie find the inspiration for Maslina’s interior design?
“My deep memory first inspired me. When I was contacted about this project, I instantly remembered the holiday I spent on Hvar island just after the war. It was 1998 and I was eleven. Even though it was 20 years ago, I remembered the pine needles on the ground, the smells, the shades, the rocks, and the transparency of the sea.
These memories allowed me to jump into the mind of a guest coming here. The wild and untouched nature of Hvar combined with leisure helped me to conceptualize a warm, easygoing but chic, and luxurious holiday destination. I saw this as a place that would welcome guests from all over the world, a place that would draw attention because of its unrivaled view and spectacular surroundings.
Thus, when envisioning the interior design, I focused on the four elements. The rocks and the mineral aspect of the island were one of the first inspirations. Then I remembered the pines and the natural color chart. At first glance, you would think that the pines are green, but they are also grey, dark blue, and dark grey. They present a large palette that we used throughout the project.
Along with the rocks and the pines, the colors of the sea, the smell and nature itself, I was also inspired by the winds. I dreamt that all windows could stay open so that the light summer breeze would flow in the curtains. Motivated by this, I chose to implement very light and transparent curtains in the common spaces to structure them softly.
However, also crucial was to design a space that makes guests feel like they are at home. Luxury doesn’t mean that things need to be shiny. We envisioned luxury so that it feels intimate; that guests can feel at ease everywhere. We paid attention to every detail.”
What materials were used in the process?
“We all share the same idea of respecting the environment and were mindful when choosing each material. To create this elegant, simple and peaceful atmosphere, natural materials were the key element.
When choosing the materials, I first thought about what could best relate to the color of the ground or the contrasting dark greens of the trees.
The first idea was to use the large rocks from the site to anchor the project on this special island. You will find the local stone from Brac Island used for all sinks, but also when you first enter the lobby. Then the terracotta brings a smoother traditional link to the color of the ground. You will be able to feel the slight imperfections that bring charm to a place.
Dark shades from the natural surroundings move from the outside and into the restaurant first. The unique black Italian terracotta used on the walls will accompany dark green lava stone tables and green ceramic pendants, creating this dark but vibrant atmosphere.
You will also find exotic Iroko wood everywhere, from the commons to the rooms, to enhance the dialogue with the landscape and the Asian-pavilion-inspired wooden facade. Finally, brushed brass is executed all around the hotel to highlight this luxury feeling and special attention to every detail.”
What are some of the unique design elements at Maslina Resort?
“First of all, 80% of the interior project is custom made, from carpentry elements to special steel doors with fumato glass, the stone sinks, mirrors, all brushed brass items (like the hooks, handles, and accessories), and even some lighting in the restaurant and the wine cellar. With this intention, we created a lot of furniture pieces, but I also set out to find a few charming and comfortable vintage pieces to make the guest feel as if it was already there.
The standout item will surely be the oversized stone desk that welcomes every guest. We chose the stone from the neighboring Brac island a long time ago and had no choice but to use it in the lobby because it weighed 12 tons! This wonderful rock has imperfections that I wanted to highlight with a special traditional Japanese method called Kintsugi (the ancient art of repairing broken ceramics with powdered gold).
You will also find unique travel trunks as wardrobes in the rooms, based on the old-fashioned idea of opening your chest during your travels and settling for a few days or more. It is crucial to understand that we really tried to create an original atmosphere; a place where you’ll want to spend a holiday and forget the routine of everyday life.
Maslina will do its best to manifest Mindful Luxury for you on your holiday."
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