What’s in a Name?

When some of the highest achievers in their fields come together to sculpt a new condo tower, attention must be paid.

The Miami Plunge
Famed designer Pierre-Yves Rochon remade the Four Seasons Hotel George V and, against the smart betting, watched it become the toast of Paris and crowned the finest hotel in the world. He managed to out-Bund the Bund with the Peninsula Shanghai, a meticulously glam ’30s pastiche. Now he embarks on perhaps his most ambitious project yet. With the groundbreaking of Jade Signature at top of mind, the design legend offers a few insights to Interiors South Florida.

You’ve never taken on a major project in Miami. How do you approach a new project? I’m always thinking, who? And where? I’m not designing for myself.
What does historical context mean to your work? The original George V was a classic hotel. The Four Seasons wanted to respect the existing building, so we pulled back the hands on the clock to recreate the ’30s, as we did with the Peninsula in Shanghai on the Bund.

Is residential design a challenge for you?
It’s not challenging at all for me. People want to associate you with one kind of design—everyone thinks I’m only classical, or only hotels. Designers should work on different kinds of projects, and not be ‘specialists.’ I love doing something different. Hospitality and residential are very close. It’s not an office building. Some buildings that were designed as purely residential are now becoming hotels. And I’ve always designed my hotels as residential as possible. Remember, 40 years ago, we were the first to give the master bedroom access to the bathroom. We were the first to put dimmers on the lights.

What comes to mind in terms of materials you might use?
Outside and inside are seamless, helped by the architectural detail of the ‘ribbons.’ There will be white marble—and white terrazzo that leads from outside to inside. We’re going to use walnut from the midcentury period, with blue and white fabric. Sometimes we will use vintage furniture; sometimes, tropical green and floral fabrics.

Pierre-Yves Rochon is designing the interiors of Jade Signature.

Finally, how will your impressions of South Florida inform your work on Jade Signature?
I love the resort feeling, I love the ’30s design, and I like the sun and the tropical vegetation. We’re in a blue-and-white city and we’re going to do blue-and-white architecture. The style of the furniture will be from the ’30s to the ’50s and ’60s. It’s going to say ‘clean’ and ‘resort.’ But it’s not going to be ‘fashion’—not made by designers for other designers. I don’t like that.

The Luminaries
Herzog & de Meuron. Raymond Jungles. Edgardo Defortuna. Pierre-Yves Rochon (see below). Independently, the names of the architects, landscape designer, developer and interior designer are enough to give one pause, but, together, we’re approaching collaboration as deification—a veritable Mount Olympus of residential development. And the twisty corner columns that serve as Jade Signature’s signature—the white ribbons seen in countless ads and renderings—are already approaching iconic status. In linguistics, when a part of the whole is used to identify the entirety, it’s called metonymy. Will “the ribbons” become the shorthand for this beyond-exciting project? 1300 Brickell Ave., 305.940.0335, jadesignature.com