The phrase “your majesty” is used when addressing a queen or a king. But why not apply it to your home? By designing your space with the right decor, a residence can become your majesty — a regal retreat whose stately opulence and dignified flair makes you feel noble.
What does it take to design a property fit for a monarch? As high-end homeowners rediscover the comfort and cachet of the royal aesthetic, here’s a curated lookbook to help you envision a castle of your own.
Maximalism From the Birthplace of Baroque
Paris is a city of palaces. A casual stroll through the streets of the capital takes you past a dazzling display of some of the world’s finest imperial architecture — the Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées, the Palais du Luxembourg, the Palais de Justice and its neighbor, the iconic Louvre.
Iryna Kakura – Propriétés Parisiennes Sotheby’s International Realty
So a private 19th century mansion and garden in the center of Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré is as legitimate as it gets when imagining your own royal quarters. This apartment exhibits a host of first-class furnishings, from the botanical motifs in the wallpaper to its lush courtyard and plush salon. Exotic touches that border ever-so-slightly on excess are a signature of classic royal style. So too is architectural magnificence, as evidenced by this home’s polished checkered floors and four-meter ceilings.
A Country Estate Kitchen Fit For a Royal Feast
The Academy Award-nominated Spencer is one of many recent films and television shows that have restored royal residences to prominence in the popular imagination. But while the Princess Diana-inspired drama does provide an exquisite portrait of Sandringham House, many of its most intriguing detours take the audience into the expansive country kitchen.
Tim Salm – Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty
This impeccable downtown Chicago property creates a strikingly similar impression. Parlors filled with antique accents and foyers fitted with coffered ceilings lead to one of the property’s most remarkable features — a wood-paneled kitchen at the back of the home. From the beautiful exposed beams to the full La Cornue range, it’s like you’re getting a glimpse inside the functional quarters of one of Europe’s great historic estates.
Take Comfort In Rich Colors and Soft Textures
Another defining characteristic of traditional castles is dramatic drapery woven from fabrics such as velvet, satin, and lace. These create densely-decorated domains, made even cozier by elegant furniture and extravagant rugs. Deep jewel tones are among the colors properly befitting a sovereign’s sanctuary.
Isabella Masserini – Italy Sotheby’s International Realty
These trends are on display in this stunning villa overlooking Lake Varese and the Italian Alps. This home is almost museum-like in its preservation of authentic paintings, paneling, tapestries, mirrors, and mantles from notable residences. The Tea Room and Monumental Library come from an 18th-century English villa, while the Napoleonic Room takes its artwork, boiserie, and stucco from a renowned Parisian manor and the primary suite is furnished with pieces from a 17th-century French castle.
Illuminate Your Living Space, and Go For Gold
While rich, dense colors may be a hallmark of historic royalty, so too are pristine white spaces with gold accents. The relative minimalism of this palette can be augmented with chandeliers and antique lighting fixtures that further brighten the space, as well as salon-style art hangings that add visual vitality.
Beverly J. Cole – Sotheby’s International Realty – East Side Manhattan Brokerage
This French Renaissance-style townhouse offers its owners a grand foyer and staircase that doubles as a picture gallery. Monarchical lineages go back generations, and many royal homes honor family and history through collections of portraits and heirlooms. That aesthetic is perfectly captured in this rare relic of the aptly-named Gilded Age on New York’s Upper East Side.
Regal Residences Require Regal Landscaping
Interior design is essential to a personal royal residence, but castles, palaces, and historic estates are equally renowned for their green spaces. Manicured gardens, fabulous fountains, meticulously maintained hedge sculptures, and private woodlands are all classic features of a royal landscape.
Richard Klug – Sotheby’s International Realty – Beverly Hills Brokerage
There’s no shortage of royal landscapes among the mansions of Beverly Hills, but few can compare with this nearly 10-acre property. With its vast sports courts, well-tended walking trails, and picturesque children’s maze, the external view of this gated residence is the very image of a ruler’s court. Forget about a pool house — this home boasts a pool pavilion that functions as a luxury retreat for two, along with a gorgeous coral-colored guesthouse.
Royalty are the original luxury icons, and their residences continue to inspire high-end design and decor to this day. Indulge yourself, and embrace a style that’s as elegant and timeless as the traditions that inform it.
Interested in more opulence? Take a tour through Gianni Versace’s Baroque Italian palazzo in Manhattan.