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Palm Beach


James Andrew – The Brazilian Court Hotel Palm Beach. Sporting a Tom Ford pink silk “Spencer” jacket, white cotton French cuff shirt, pink and green silk madras pants, pink silk brocade slippers, green and white silk hounds tooth pocket square, Seaman Schepps shell and pink sapphire cufflinks, Cartier “Tank Divan,” and Creed Windsor fragrance.

Scott McBee and I have been pretty busy this summer and haven’t really had time for proper holidays, so we treated ourselves to a few mini-getaways instead!

Palm Beach is always a preferred destination and quite handy to New York – just a quick 2 hour flight. Some super chic friends of ours recently shared their gorgeous photos of the Brazilian Court Hotel in Palm Beach. Suitably intrigued, it was not long before McBee and I sorted some rooms there and were on our way!

I’ve always looked for hotels that capture the essence of a place, and I am quite pleased to say the Brazilian Court captures Palm Beach in the most wonderful way. The hotel was designed by famed architect Rosario Candela in 1926 and doubled in size come the mid-30s at the hand of the legendary Palm Beach architect, Maurice Fatio. A series of courtyards, lush tropical gardens, and classical/Renaissance architecture in the Mediterranean style give it a crisp elegant beauty. While there (and we were treated to the sublime “Astaire Suite”) one has the feeling of being a guest at a marvelous Palm Beach estate – true tropical splendor! And it is located right in the center of town with all the best of Palm Beach only a short stroll away.

We really had no mission other than to luxuriate and decompress – so most days we started with a brilliant breakfast at Cafe Boulud – the hotel’s restaurant), then we’d head off to lounge poolside. Later, we’d take a walk to the beach, maybe promenade down Worth Avenue, and follow this by a relaxing lunch at the Surfside Diner.

James Andrew. At The Brazilian Court Palm Beach wearing a Tom Ford cotton floral shirt, white cotton twill pants, magenta ikat velvet slippers, “Sergio” sunglasses, Lock & Co Hatters – straw panama hat, Cartier Tank Divan, James Kiel Patrick woven white cotton belt, Tom Ford Mandarino Di Amalfi fragrance.

We’d get dressed for the evenings, and dined at some of our favorite “old school” Palm Beach restaurants like Bice which has magnificent Milanese cuisine. On another night our dear friend Tom Samet gathered together a chic collection of friends and took us to a divine dinner at Buccan which serves innovative American cuisine made with fresh well-sourced ingredients.

September is a marvelous month to visit Palm Beach, with amazing deals to be had on hotels and dining, and it is so incredibly peaceful. It’s almost as hot in New York as it is in Palm Beach but one has a pool and the beach to enjoy, making it the perfect venue for an extended summer getaway.


James Andrew - the Colony Palm Beach.

James Andrew – the Colony Palm Beach.

The Colony Palm Beach is the next best thing to having a home in Palm Beach! From the well situated Colony it’s an easy thing to indulge in all that Palm Beach has to offer. Of course, with the Colony’s delicious culinary offerings, Polo Bar, and nightly Royal Room cabaret, it’s really more than tempting to simply stay put!

Breakfast served poolside is such a treat, and when you’re there, do try the “low country shrimp and grits” and/or the the shrimp and avocado omelette — it’s all so very Duchess of Windsor. We spent pretty much every day lounging and lunching with friends — only leaving the Colony’s confines to soak in some sun in the afternoon at the nearby beach before returning for cocktail hour and the evening’s festivities. We were lucky enough to be there for the infamous Thursday “Boys Night” which is as you may have surmised, an opportunity for local and visiting guys and their pals to congregate — we ourselves celebrated the night under the stars with bottles of rosé, though inexplicably most remained indoors. If you are anything like me, when you’re in the tropics, you want to be, well…in the tropics!

I’m photographed (top) poolside at the Colony dressed for dinner and “Boys Night” in a Tom Ford palest blue silk dinner jacket (worn casual), Tom Ford white cotton twill pants, white cotton shirt, and ivory suede loafers, Mark Pomerantz blue and white floral silk pocket square, Le Noeud Papillion purple and pale blue glen plaid silk ascot worn as scarf, Seaman Schepps pearl and pale blue sapphire cuff links, Paul Stuart blue and white ribbon belt, Creed Windsor fragrance, and a bit of Tom Ford Bronzing Gel to enhance my tan.


James Andrew, the Colony Palm Beach

James Andrew, the Colony Palm Beach

One of my primary requirements of a hotel is that it capture the essence of its surrounds, and when we read that Carleton Varney’s criterion regarding the re-imagining of the Colony Palm Beach was that “people on vacation in Palm Beach should feel like they’re staying in Palm Beach,” we knew that the Colony would be perfect!

Varney’s mentor, Dorothy Draper, was fearless in her use of color, and imbued all of her work with tremendous personality. Carrying on this tradition, Varney has certainly given his decoration for the Colony loads of Palm Beach personality! Throughout the hotel, Varney’s “Draperization” includes a marvelous mix of Dorothy Draper fabrics and wallpapers. He utilizes a custom designed carpet based on the Brazilliance pattern (a beautiful and exuberant banana leaf motif) combined with fretwork and striped wallpapers, each floor with a different color scheme.

Colony Palm Beach - hallway detail

Colony Palm Beach – hallway detail

The Colony Palm Beach

The Colony Palm Beach

The luxurious lobby revolves around a central seating area, with a custom designed hibiscus and banana leaf motif carpet set against a dramatic black backdrop, providing the perfect contrast for a monumental curved sofa upholstered in aqua velvet with black bullion fringe. The armchairs are upholstered in “Brazilliance” fabric, and the walls are sheathed in Jasper Peony wallpaper by Sebastian Varney of Carleton V Ltd. in a coral colorway with a complimentary fretwork pattern — accents of coral and aqua throughout. All present and impossibly fresh interpretation of bygone Palm Beach glamor!

The Colony Palm Beach

The Colony Palm Beach

Do secure a suite when you go. Having both a sitting room and a bedroom made all the difference in the world!

I’m photographed (top) in the lovely lobby soaking up endless inspiration. I’m sporting a Tom Ford “Snowdon” suit in a lilac rose silk wool melange twill and royal silk dot pocket square, a bespoke Mark Pomerantz “Liberty of London” esq lavender and blue floral print cotton shirt with fabric covered buttons, Ralph Lauren royal blue suede espadrilles, vintage Rolex, Tom Ford Bronzing Gel accentuating my tan, and Tom Ford’s Mandarino Di Amalfi fragrance with notes of Jasmine, Orange Blossom, Grapefruit, Mint, Thyme. Luminous!