all it an occupational hazard: What sold Misha Nonoo on her Greenwich Village duplex was the cavernous master closet. “I was like, ‘Dream!,’ ” the bubbly blonde Brit says of the space, designed by former owner Nate Berkus (AD, November 2012). Nonoo purchased the pad in 2013 with husband Alexander Gilkes, founder of Paddle8. When their marriage ended, she resolved to start fresh. “I wanted to clean house, breathe new energy into the place, and make it my own,” she explains.
She began by hiring decorator and friend Andre Mellone. “I love what you do,” she told him, meaning midcentury, masculine decors for the likes of Thom Browne and Jason Wu. Another touchstone was the minimalist work of designer Axel Vervoordt, to which Mellone diplomatically responded, “Let’s find your own way of doing it.”
After painting most of the walls with a creamy base, Mellone went hunting for “beautifully curated pieces of different styles,” among them Gio Ponti–style mirrors and a Milo Baughman raffia chair. “My aesthetic has evolved to become more pared back,” says Nonoo. “There’s no place in my life for tchotchkes.”
Two Oscar Tuazon works hang in the living room, and in the library a Warhol portrait of Queen Elizabeth II cheekily nods to Nonoo’s English roots. Mellone proposed placing TM Davy’s portrait of Nonoo beside it (“I wanted the Queen and the other queen together,” he quips), but she quashed the idea as “a little too much.” Her doppelgänger now resides in a green-lacquered bar room, formerly a home office.
“I entertain enormously,” says the designer, the rumored matchmaker behind England’s Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle. (Nonoo is attending this month’s wedding.) Since the previous layout of two living rooms “created a stilted flow,” says Mellone, he relocated the dining room alongside the kitchen and turned the former dining area into the library. Now Nonoo can host intimate dinner parties or big cocktail-and-canapé affairs. Of course the living room’s white carpet and pale furniture raise some questions: Are shoes allowed? Red wine? Yes and yes.
“I have a dog who is filthy half the time,” Nonoo says. “That’s also a British thing about me, a lack of neurosis.” That and the fact that she keeps a carpet-cleaning service on speed dial.