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Malibu Beach Inn Undergoes Beachy Chic Redesign

MALIBU, CA—Creating harmonious spaces for a celebrity’s abode can raise your profile as many designers will attest, but designing for people you know can be just as thrilling and worthwhile. Los Angeles-based designer Waldo Fernandez knows this well: He’s decorated homes for A-list celebrates such as Elizabeth Taylor, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, and Wolfgang Puck, to name a few.

When Malibu Beach Inn owners Daniel and Simon Mani—he’s known the brothers for years—approached him about renovating the hotel, he jumped right in and brought Tommy Clements of Clements Designs on board for the project.

“When they told me they’d bought the hotel and were interested in remodeling, the opportunity sounded so exciting. Malibu’s natural beauty and the surrounding landscape is so inspiring on its own, which made it easy for us to take on the redesign,” said Fernandez.

Situated on Carbon Beach and a short walk to the Malibu Pier, the boutique hotel features 47 guestrooms with private balconies, an in-room selection of California wines, restaurant with terrace, bar and lounge, as well as a spa.

“Tommy Clements and I were inspired by the sheer spirit of Malibu. All of the rooms have oceanfront views and are designed to be relaxed and comfortable, yet still remain very chic,” Fernandez said. “Every detail of the design, which has been extensively thought through and analyzed, reflects luxury. From the custom-made furniture pieces to the natural Belgian linens and lavish textiles to the indulgent bathroom fixings.”

The city’s beautiful, sandy beaches and 21 miles of coastline served as the catalyst for the hotel’s revamped spaces. The project started about a year-and-a-half ago and it is being completed in phases, with the onsite restaurant The Carbon Beach Club, reception area and a few guestrooms completed and refurbishment of the remaining guestrooms currently underway.

“The rooms are a work in progress. The carpets were replaced with hardwood, the walls now feature a wood paneling detail, and so much more. The restaurant, Carbon Beach Club, has been fully redesigned featuring new cocktail tables and seating by the bar, as well as custom-made banquettes, tables and seating for the main dining room,” Fernandez said.

Clements lent his talent and expertise to the hotel redesign and, according to Fernandez, the project was very much collaboration process as the owners were hands-on participants throughout the design process as well.

“We worked closely with Simon and Daniel Mani themselves to bring the project’s full vision to fruition. Collaboration is definitely a major component in successfully pulling together a large-scale project such as this one,” Fernandez said.

Purposefully, the team opted for a design scheme that wouldn’t impose or take away from the landscape, and selections of colors, furnishings and fabrics were meant to provide cohesiveness throughout the property. Much of the wood furniture was custom-made out of rift oak with natural finishes, adding a distinctive touch to the overall calming feel of the hotel.

“We went with a beachy color palette such as warm neutrals, navy, seafoam, etc., creating fluidity between the rooms, the water and the hillside in a laid-back yet chic way,” Fernandez said. “We wanted the overall feel of the space to have that cool and relaxed feeling. Similar themes are carried throughout the hotel, but individualized items and details make each space unique.” 

—Corris Little