For this Hollywood power couple, creating an artfully curated and dazzling space is second nature. Baz Luhrmann and Catherine Martin, who recently told Daily Mail that they don’t share the same bedroom, are known for their meticulously researched work on films like Moulin Rouge and Romeo + Juliet and a daring 2002 Broadway staging of the opera La Bohème. It’s no surprise, then, that their New York City townhouse interior design involved a high-scale production value.
There is the background check that Martin, a costume and set designer, did on both the house—built in 1852 by a Brooklyn-based merchant—and the surrounding Stuyvesant Park neighborhood— she can quote statistics about the college education level, racial diversity, linguistic skills, and single-sex parentage of the demographic. There are the four months it took for the couple to move from their Greenwich Village rental into their new home (during which time Luhrmann, a director and writer, would regularly invoke Waiting for Godot). And then there are the Photoshop mock-ups, 3D drawings, sample boards, and interiors presentations that Martin and her team assembled for her husband’s sign-off.
The 1940s chairs in the White Room are in Martin’s Bengal Tiger fabric for Mokum, the cocktail table is by West Elm, the rug is by Designer Rugs, and the home’s original windows are fitted with Hunter Douglas honeycomb blinds. The Annie Leibovitz book Sumo and its stand are from Taschen.
The couple’s theatrical sensibilities are evident throughout. A darkly dramatic entry plays up the house’s Victorian heritage with a red Louis de Poortere stair runner and an antique Thonet side table, nabbed from the set of their 2008 film Australia. The Green Room’s verdant, ruby-accented decor was inspired by the original green tiles framing the fireplace.
On the second floor, Martin and Luhrmann sought a more serene setting. There, the space they call the White Room boasts 16-foot ceilings and is furnished with icy-hued vintage armchairs and curving sofas, offsetting the original antique chandelier and windows overlooking Stuyvesant Square Park.