Rooms in Bloom: Legends of La Cienega 2024 Recap

The opening night party of Legends of La Cinenega 2024, honored Pamela Shamshiri of Studio Shamshiri, with the Living Legend award. The party, hosted at the historic Sunset Tower Hotel in Hollywood kicked off three jam-packed days of design industry parties, panels, and showroom activations in the La Cienega Design Quarter. 


This year, much of the programming centered on cultural influences in design, design business growth and on wellness & sustainability. Some of the notable discussions included: 

The AAPI Perspective on Heritage Design at Collected Form

Collected Form and Benjamin Moore hosted The Asian American Pacific Islander Design Alliance (AAPIDA) panel titled: HUES + HERITAGE: The AAPI Perspective on Legacy Design, which was as profound as it was humorous. 

Panelists included San Francisco based Noz Nozawa, Noz Design; Los Angeles based Peti Lau, Peti Lau, Inc.; and Atlanta based Jessica Davis, Atelier Davis, who tackled the conversation about cultural appropriation with levity, grace, and sass. Michael Diaz-Griffith, Executive Director and CEO of the Design Leadership Network and author of The New Antiquarians: At Home with Young Collectors moderated. 

Peti Lau, Noz Nozawa, Jessica Davis, and Michael Diaz-Griffith

They discussed how the unique cultural experiences and traditions of growing up AAPI influence their approach to design. Together they explored questions such as: 

  • Is Chinoiserie okay in today’s culture? (Yes, just remember where it comes from, and how much more expensive it is when it’s made in Paris vs made in China, despite the quality being the same) 
  • What is with “Japandi?” (It’s not a real thing – just rebranded minimalism with a pinch of racially-charged seasoning) 

But First, Coffee at The Luxury Kitchen

The Luxury Kitchen hosted a panel and luncheon event titled “But First, Coffee: The intersection of design, style, branding and innovation with creative luminaries.” Attendees experienced an engaging coffee chat with internationally acclaimed, award-winning designer Ryan Saghian and Josh Zad, CEO of the global coffee brand Alfred Coffee, moderated by design publicist Roxie Sarhangi. The event was set against the backdrop of The Luxury Kitchen — a stylish, exclusive showroom featuring Sub Zero, Wolf and Cove appliances. 

Alfred’s first location in Melrose Place, is a stone’s throw from the La Cienega Design Quarter showrooms and across the street from Ryan Saghian’s design studio. From the beginning, Alfred was always designer-focused.

Though Alfred is a chain, it is decidedly not like a Starbucks. Each Alfred coffee shop adopts the aesthetic and cultural flavor of the neighborhood it is in. That presents a branding challenge most business owners would be afraid to touch. But most business owners are not as design-obsessed as Josh Zad who views the challenge as an exciting opportunity for creative expression. More than coffee, Zad loves design. 

In the way a designer may not be known for just one aesthetic, molding their design to client specifications, rather than forcing their one-look will, Zad was faced with zooming out and pulling out the through-lines of Alfred’s look and feel to establish their marketable brand consistency. Ryan Saghian compared it to the way known painters’ subjects and themes change, but their strokes are what make their pieces unmistakably theirs. 

Together, they discussed the importance of day-one partnerships, having tapped designer Kelly Wearstler to design the first Alfred coffee cup sleeves, and fashion brand Rag & Bone to dress their baristas.   

Living with Nature at Mehraban

Aspire Design and Home’s Deputy Editor, Jennifer Quail, led a dynamic conversation with esteemed panelists: Cesar Giraldo, Cesar Giraldo Design; David Thompson, Assembledge+; Stephen Block, Inner Gardens; and Margie Lavender, Kligerman Architecture & Design. Together, they explored the art of designing homes that celebrate Mother Nature inside and out. 

As the one east coast-resident on the panel, moderator Jennifer Quail joked about her keen awareness of the separation of indoors and outdoors, which made the discussion with Margie Lavender about the Japanese design concept of Shakkei, (blurring the lines between the built environment and nature) all the more fascinating.

Cesar Giraldo discussed his wellness resort project in Medellin that is nearing completion. The resort’s wellness spa embraces an indoor-outdoor connection to the Colombian mountain town’s lush surroundings and makes use of the hotel’s roof deck. 

Justina Blakeney’s fine art debut at The Artwolf Gallery

Justina Blakeney; The Jungalow, was joined by AD 100 designer Bridgette Romanek; Romanek Design Studio, in a fireside chat. Together they discussed their artistic processes and design philosophies, and how each of them creates space to decide what projects to prioritize next.

The Artwolf, Yael McShane-Wulfhart introduces Bridgette Romanek and Justina Blakeney

Romanek asked Blakeney about boundary blurring: Does she view product design the same as interior design the same as painting? The answer was yes. And, Blakeney elaborated, each painting teaches her something new. 

The biggest lesson: When she picked up painting after having taken a break for many years, she was surprised to learn she had actually become a better painter, a byproduct of all of the other creative work she was doing. 

Rooms in Bloom: the windows of La Cienega

The signature tradition of Legends is the showroom windows of La Cienega. Each year, the showrooms select an interior designer to design their shop windows facing Melrose and La Cienega, interpreting the event’s theme. This year, the theme was Rooms in Bloom, and the windows were awash in fresh florals. 

Window at Marc Phillips showroom, Legends 2024

Deana Lenz for Philip Stites

New York-based Deana Lenz Interiors pulled out all the stops for her Avant Garde Secret Garden window at Philip Stites, full of “wow factor” collectible design finds from Una Malan, Thomas Hayes Studio, Twentieth Gallery, Jason Koharik, The Future Perfect, Lowland Studio, as well as Lulu & Georgia.

See Also

Avrea & Company for McKinnon and Harris

Dallas-based interiors firm Avrea and Company lent its uniquely American approach to the McKinnon and Harris showroom window. Inspired by sun-kissed summerscapes and the vibrant, playful blue and green hues of Palm Beach, Avrea and Company’s “Pretty in Petals” gardenscape displayed an ensemble of their favorite things. Hand-painted chinoiserie wallpaper by Degournay served as a backdrop for McKinnon and Harris’ high-grade aluminum and hand-sewn upholstered pieces, and they included terry cloth pillows from Hermès and D. Porthault. 

Another highlight piece is a custom duVal dining chair by McKinnon and Harris that Ashley Cathey reimagined into a comfortable, “petite” lounge seat. The brand’s artisans have been handcrafting customized, made-to-order furniture at their Richmond, VA, workshop for more than 30 years. 

French & French for Caché Antiques

Caché Antiques designed by Heather and Matt French of French and French Interiors. Based in Santa Fe, design couple Heather and Matt brought their love of pattern, antiques, and a distinct sense of eclectic style to the design of Caché Antique’s showroom, with French florals on display.

The window’s design is aptly named Floral Reverie: Tales of Antiquity and offers an eclectic narrative of timeless elegance amid vibrant blooms, bringing together a mix of antique styles from all over the world into a snapshot of style from French & French Interiors. 

Marbé for The Luxury Kitchen

Award-winning interior designer Marbé Briceno Velázquez, of Marbé Designs, was tapped to create The Luxury Kitchen’s window. For her window, “Floral Fantasy: A cultural tapestry,” she wove together her passions for art, architecture, and design, featuring an intoxicating mix of exotic birds, tropical plants, and South American and Spanish influences. Source Art collaborated on the window with three talented artists contributing to the vision, including Karen Sikie, Clare Celeste Börsch, and Marisa Aragón Ware. 

Marbé Briceno Velázquez with Marylinda Moss of SourceArt

To explore all the windows, click here | Photos by Peter Christiansen Valli

Una Casa Privada

Una Malan’s showroom on La Cienega is full of feminine contemporary marvels and collectible art and lighting, but it is in her curated showhouse, Una Casa Privada, tucked quietly into the foothills of Hollywood where her collections are curated in the context of a home. Last year and this year, she hosted the closing party of Legends in the house. 

Una Malan, artist Aude Herlédan, Roxie Sarhangi at Una Casa Privada
Una Malan, Deana Lenz, Emily Bernstein at Una Casa Privada, Legends 2024

More About LEGENDS

The most sought-after event on the national design calendar, LEGENDS is an annual design festival in its 14th year that brings influencers, enthusiasts, editors, and purveyors of design from across the U.S. and from around the world to the La Cienega Design Quarter for three days of keynotes, open houses, discussions, book signings, exhibitions, personal appearances, social events and networking. The hallmark of LEGENDS is the transformation of the windows of the LCDQ shops and showrooms on the theme of the event, Rooms in Bloom.

About LCDQ

The La Cienega Design Quarter became known in the 1950s, when many interior designers lived upstairs from their design studios in the fashionable apartments lining La Cienega Boulevard. In those days, the likes of William Haines, Elsie de Wolfe, Frances Elkins, Tony Duquette and Michael Taylor trawled the boulevard looking for unique finds. Some of those buildings remain, uniquely preserved and often inhabited by antique shops and design showrooms, and The Quarter continues to draw the designer who is looking for the rare and unusual. The LCDQ covers one square mile around the intersection of La Cienega Boulevard, Melrose Place and Melrose Avenue, including a cluster of design showrooms from San Vicente to almost Robertson Boulevard.

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


Subscribe Now to the FREE Design News Now newsletter for the latest in product, design and retail trends in the home furnishings industry. Delivered to your inbox weekly!

Scroll To Top