The interior design of Splendido Mare revives the timeless allure of Portofino
Housed at a 14-room guest house, Splendido Mare has undergone a complete renovation; every detail of the interior design and the guest experience has been carefully crafted to tell the story of the nautical heritage of the harbour town, the surrounding natural beauty of the Ligurian Coast and the timeless glamour of La Dolce Vita.
The interior design of Splendido Mare is by Festen Architecture. Throughout the hotel, guests find detailed references to nautical heritage blended with the glamour of the 1950s and mid-century modern references. Each of the 14 rooms and suites feature locally sourced and hand-varnished wood, traditionally used in the fishing and sailing boats that dot the harbour. Rope patterns are woven into the marquetry of the headboards, handcrafted by renowned textile designer Véronique de Soultrait. The nautical knot is the emblem of the hotel and is referenced through detailed touchpoints from the bespoke designed glassware and crockery and the individual room keys. The 7,000 terracotta tiles, handmade by local Ligurian craftsmen and laid in the restaurant, feature the undulation of the water to create a feeling of walking on the sea.
Details of Splendido Mare Interior Design
All 14 rooms and suites are also full of colours inspired by the traditional Ligurian buildings and luxurious layers and materials by Lora Piana and Rubelli. The traditional Ligurian colours of the harbour buildings are found in a palette of amber, terracotta and sea green, used to accent the archways and ceilings. The pastel colours are symbolic of the region and have been used to decorate the facades and window shutters for generations. The design of the wooden floor is inspired by the church of San Giorgio in the town while the bathrooms are designed to create a calming sanctuary, inspired by the neighbouring ‘Santa Margherita’ beach cabins, white and yellow geometric tiles form bold striped walls enhanced against a pure white marble floor.
Blending references of the past with timely relevance, Festen has combined traditional craftsmanship, reinterpreted in contemporary ways, alongside antique objects and custom-made furnishings. Every detail has a sense of place, with all materials locally sourced and handmade including Carrara marble in the bathrooms and slate on the terraces. The furnishings are layered with soft Italian fabrics by Loro Piana and Rubelli and the wall lamps are from Murano Glass.
Mid-Century Modern Italian furnishings celebrate the iconic 1950s era that defined Portofino’s glamorous history and an important time for Italian design. Each guestroom features authentic antiques including fruitwood armchairs by Paolo Buffa and Gio Ponti – selected for their graphic and joyful style. Walnut armchairs by Ulrich Guglielmo and table lamps by Oscar Torlasco create a sense of welcoming nostalgia, especially for many Italians who grew up with similar pieces in their family homes. One of the suites is inspired by Ava Gardner who personifies mid-century glamour and was a frequent visitor to the guest house when filming ‘The Barefoot Contessa in 1954 with Humphrey Bogart.
The art collection features 100 pieces of individual works curated by ARTIQ, with specially commissioned items by Italian artist, Gabriele Capelli. Uniforms are by emerging fashion designer, Arthur Arbesser who has created timeless designs that reflect the atmosphere of relaxed sophistication. The new restaurant, DaV Mare, in partnership with Da Vittorio Group, brings a new level of gastronomic excellence to the Ligurian Coast and is set to become the beating heart of the Piazzetta.