inspiration4 min read

Soho House style: the design behind DUMBO House

WordsMegan Lambert

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As part of our Lick x Soho House collaboration, we're taking an in-depth look at the Houses that inspired the colors. This week it's Brooklyn's iconic DUMBO House. Overlooking New York City's East River, nestled between Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridge, it occupies the sixth and seventh floors of a former brick factory and is privy to uninterrupted views of NYC's skyline. We're peering through those famous floor-to-ceiling windows and taking a closer look at the interiors that inspired its paint color, Purple 03 DUMBO House. So if you want to dig a little deeper into the past and present of this one-of-a-kind location, read on.

The architecture 

Pritzker Prize-winning Mexican architect, Luis Barragán, was a huge inspiration for the Soho House design team, influencing both the interior and exterior spaces of DUMBO House. Known for his bold and colorful houses, it was this playful use of color that inspired the pink concrete roof used on the rooftop bar. Born in Guadalajara, Barragán was formally trained as an engineer before becoming a self-taught architect. Many believe that it was this lack of formal training that gave him the freedom to break the rules and experiment with light, shadow, colors, and texture. Both inside and outside, you can see how the Soho House design team channeled Barragán’s sense of fun and rule-breaking style.

There’s an emphasis on bringing the outdoors in. Floor-to-ceiling windows make the most of those pristine New York city skyline views. As Soho House founder Nick Jones describes:

There is always that magical moment in the evening when the sun starts to set and you can watch as the Brooklyn Bridge and city light up, sitting on the terrace with a negroni in hand—I don’t think that could ever get old.

Nick Jones, Soho House Founder

And with an almost 4000 sq ft rooftop, you’re never too far away from one of those magical sunsets, proving that even in the heart of the urban jungle, you can still reconnect with the outdoors.

Inside Soho House's DUMBO House in New York City

The interiors 

Luis Barragán’s influence can be felt throughout the interiors. “[He] was a huge inspiration," says Soho House's Senior Interior Designer, Staver Kaufman. "He worked a lot with color-blocked concrete in his architecture which helped inform our color story". The lower level is an open-plan space, incorporating a lounge, library bar, and dining spaces. The interiors channel DUMBO’s 1960s and 70s heyday, when New York’s creative scene “were drawn to the lofty warehouse spaces which provided light and inexpensive rent”, explains Kaufman.

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