Artful Escape

A young couple enlists interior designer Melanie Turner to create the ultimate luxury pied-à-terre high above the treetops of Buckead.

Melanie Turner’s projects tend to get noticed. Her interiors, which appear often on the pages of shelter magazines, also tend to be uniquely glamorous, which brought her work to the attention of a young couple in need of a high-style, urban retreat for their second home in Atlanta. The pair’s landing pad: The Residences at The St. Regis in Buckhead, a 26-story building boasting some of Atlanta’s most coveted condominiums, thanks to private elevators, enormous terraces and access to the hotel’s concierge service.

“The apartment is above the tree line,” Turner says, “so you feel like you’re overlooking Central Park in New York.” The designer was determined to capitalize on the rare sunset views from her clients’ terrace. She also wanted the terrace to serve as a natural extension of the interior living space and bought a theatrical teak root dining table in Bali to headline the gathering space. But when move-in day arrived, the table wouldn’t fit through the apartment’s doorways. Undeterred, Turner ran down to the street where crews were installing the holiday ice rink at the St. Regis, and convinced the crew to loan her their crane to hoist the table up to the residence’s terrace.

Thankfully, the interior furnishings were easier to deliver. A mix of tailored furniture, jewel tones and statement accessories lend a sense of occasion to the artfully arranged rooms. Every element of the apartment was chosen for its ‘wow’ factor. “The more unique, the better,” says Turner of her selection process. “We wanted everything to be one-of-a-kind and special.” The living room’s chandelier is a prime example of Turner’s curatorial process. “It was like a piece of statement jewelry,” she says. “The wife and I both love gold bangles and it was like a big bracelet for the room.” Against its cool white backdrop, there are visual surprises wherever the eye lands.

From the goldleaf pig perched on the coffee table, to the massive, sculptural terrace dining table, every piece took advantage of the luxury of a second home, namely that it can be as stimulating as you like since it is enjoyed in limited doses. Works of art by Georgia artists Todd Murphy and Kevin Archer pay tribute to the location, and contrast vividly with antiques such as an Italian carved table and black-lacquered Dorothy Draper chest. With exquisite art, sophisticated furniture and a stunning view, Turner’s jewel-box of a high-rise apartment encompasses the best the city has to offer.