Using a neutral color palette of gray, white and silver, McKinstrie created a simple but striking backdrop for his extensive collections of paintings, many of which he has discovered stateside and abroad. A perfect fit in color and scale, the large painting over the sofa is a 1960s Rubington, The Burning of Paris, which McKinstrie discovered in a New York gallery. The living room furniture is a blending of antique and modern pieces that are covered in soft grey heather cashmere and trimmed with brick red leather piping. "I always love a punch of color in a room, especially a spot of leopard on an accent pillow. It is key to mix a bit of modern with classic," says the designer, whose mover-and-shaker client list reads like a veritable "Who's Who."
Perched in a Fort Lee high-rise above the banks of the Hudson River sits the ultra-glam "digs" of Malcolm McKinstrie, interior designer celebre to the rich, the famous and the fashionable. "I call my home a 'museum salon' with a star view," McKinstrie says of his floor-to-ceiling-windowed open floor space, which is chock full of his amazing collection of all things bold and beautiful. In 2006, he removed walls and gutted the apartment down to the studs. "I wanted that incredible view of water and skyline to be the star, so I kept trim and moldings very simple," McKinstrie says of his year-long renovation.
Starstruck. That's how McKinstrie often feels in his sky-high home on a warm spring evening when the balcony doors are open to the night, the crystal chandeliers twinkle, and his jaw-dropping collection of Old World antiquities and priceless paintings takes the spotlight. "Every piece I have chosen has a unique story to tell," McKinstrie says passionately of his life-long love affair with collecting objects of beauty. "I never tire of their magic."