Back in 1901, a German design magazine sponsored an international architectural competition called the House for an Art Lover. This Florida home, while constructed more than a hundred years later, seems almost like it might have been designed for the contest.
Owned by supermodel and entrepreneur Elle Macpherson, the house’s large, minimalist rooms with high ceilings and acres of white walls are perfect for displaying artwork, without the austerity of a gallery. Macpherson is a noted art collector and devotee of 20th century design, and each room is accordingly filled with her treasures.
In 2019, Macpherson told Architectural Digest about her home, “This time, it wasn’t about developing a million different schemes, with lots of custom-built furniture or profound investments, and then deciding which one to pursue. This feels more modern, adopting a sustainable approach to design—taking the best of what you already have and repurposing it for a new life.”
When you’re a supermodel who’s been collecting art since the 1980s, the best of what you have includes artworks by Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Richard Prince, Keith Haring, Kenny Scharf, Lucian Freud, Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst, along with furniture by Pierre Jeanneret, Jean Royère, and Mathieu Matégot.
Alas, all good things come to an end, and Macpherson has just listed the Coral Gables house, set on 1.71 acres in the exclusive gated community of Journeys End Estates, with Douglas Elliman agent Pablo Alfaro at $29 million.
Chad Oppenheim served as the architect, while Macpherson retained Sawyer Berson for design. The spacious interior spans 8,935 square feet, with six bedrooms and six bathrooms, plus a powder room. Highlights include a cavernous foyer, an enormous living/dining/entertaining area, an all-white family-sized kitchen with marble counters, a separate office space and a library. The master suite boasts two large walk-in closets, as if any any supermodel consider less.
Outside, the patio steps down onto manicured grounds designed by Enzo Enea, as well as a serene saltwater pool surrounded by massive live oaks. There are lemon, orange, and mango trees, along with an organic vegetable garden. The neighborhood association offers a private dock and tennis courts, as well.
As Macpherson told AD, “This place is so different from what I had in mind, but I believe in being openhearted and open-minded in life, and this space and location just felt right.” Any art lover looking for a new house to display their collection in relaxed serenity might feel the same.