Today, I’m excited to re-visit this Indo-Asian-inspired high rise we designed for a wonderful couple in Houston. This collected interior was featured in Rue Magazine last year and is still one of our favorites!

Our client is a fascinating, well-traveled professional with impeccable style.  She works overseas and splits her time between Paris and Houston, giving her many opportunities to grow her worldly art collection. She speaks multiple languages, has red hair like me, and her Spanish-Indian ancestry inspired the home’s color palette. All in all, she’s just the kind of person you want to be when you grow up.

The condo was beautifully renovated 10 years ago. The revision resulted in lots of character-building details, but our client and her husband needed a little more. As collectors and art aficianados, they needed a home where their collections took center stage.

Our goal was to make the most of the tight space by using multi-purpose furniture. But first things first, the color palette. We chose a mix of warm Sienna, terracotta, and cream. The quiet rust contrasted with calming white falls to the background, allowing prints, paintings, vases, and other pieces to consume the eyes.

Collected high-rise with vintage tea set, industrial lamps, pottery and framed impressionist art - Laura U Interior Design

collected high-rise cream upholstered seating area - Laura U Interior Design

collected high-rise chaise lounge with copper mobile and leafy plant - Laura U Interior Design

collected high-rise indo-asian inspired vignette - laura u interior design

This Uptown high rise in Houston is one of the city’s most sought-after buildings. It was a pleasure to design there! But a challenge too because of the space constraints.

When you have an art collection, it’s important to create visual space. There’s a reason why art galleries have white walls.

So when tasked with the living room, we knew we wanted to create the feeling of openness without the overcrowding. A gallery wall of paintings didn’t seem fitting. White or cream wouldn’t work either. The design team settled on a custom, hand-made silk wallcovering from Fromental. And it’s stunning! It’s the perfect piece for creating a statement wall.

However, when it arrived, it was improperly sized! Since it’s a custom piece shipped from London, there was an additional six weeks of added install time to get it where we needed it to be. (We actually had a square foot of blank wall for a while.) But the wait was ultimately worth it! The wallcovering adds visual texture and movement, while allowing the eye to wander undeterred. This covering reminds me of distant mountains, the mist floating idly by. Very evocative of the landscapes our clients have seen during their travels!

The converted den was designed to serve as a study and a guest bedroom. They even included a gorgeous, hidden sleeper sofa. Can you tell?! The living space serves as a dining area and a living room for the couple. We added a mid-century console to give our clients space to display their favorite vintage tea set and pottery. Mid-century looks continue to be trendy. I think a lot of this is due to their clean lines. They work really well to balance out loud colors or intricate patterns.

One interesting thing about the condo is that it didn’t have a closet big enough for both our clients to use. Again, that space challenge! But the condo did have a little sitting room floating in the middle of the home. So we decided to turn the sitting room into a closet big enough for both of them. We created a custom closet with built-ins to give them lots of storage space. And sliding doors help close off the multiple access points. Now they finally have a closet they can both use!

collected high-rise seating area with rose gold round mirror, womb chair, kilim rug and de gournay wallpaper - laura u interior design

collected high-rise minimalist living room with copper geometric lighting and neutral colors - laura u interior design

earthy collected high-rise breakfast nook with copper metallic geometric lighting - laura u interior design

collected high-rise minimalist bathroom with wood cabinetry and freestanding tub - laura u interior design

collected high-rise with custom dressing room closet - laura u interior design

collected high-rise minimalist kitchen with large globe lighting - laura u interior design

collected high-rise indo-asian inspired bedroom with wooden screen headboard and antique spindle leg nightstand - laura u interior design

This newly renovated collected high-rise condo is perfect for our clients. The collected style blends mid-century furnishings and antiques with our client’s favorite collections. I loved seeing their reaction at the final reveal! Your home should be filled with the items you love. It sounds so simple and cliche, but what defines home more than your “happy place”? The team couldn’t have been happier when we heard our clients say they were “over the top happy and satisfied” with their new home. 

It doesn’t get much better than that!

For more behind the scene photos of what my team and I are working on, follow me on Instagram.


Laura U

Laura Umansky is a story-teller at heart. Her unique perspective and tailored design process empower her to create singular interiors for clients all over the world.

One thought on “Montebello Collected High-rise Reveal

  1. Sarah Cummings on August 3, 2018 at 12:45 am Reply

    Hey Laura, I love your designs! So spacious and neat-looking. Hoping to see more of your photos. 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Marked fields are required.