Book Review: Michele Bönan, The Gentleman Of Style – Renowned Italian architect and interior designer Michele Bönan likens each of his ventures to a film script, composed of dynamic narrative, wit, and irony.
An aspiring architect from the age of five, Bönan attended Florence’s Accademia di Belle Arti, which he credits with compelling his freedom of expression. Bönan’s first great success came at twenty, when a magazine published his work for the home of famous tennis player friend Adriano Panatta and other high-profile clients immediately took notice.
Whether for private clients or public buildings, Bönan’s designs—ranging among hotels, restaurants, estates, and even yachts—each possess a distinctive virtuosic excellence. His aesthetic incorporates modern elements and luxuries; but historical architecture, particularly that of his native Florence, always informs his style choices. “Truth before all things” is the inspiration behind all Michele Bönan’s work, a mantra he manifests by carefully arranging the desires of his clients into their ideal environment, “translated with pure Italian flair.” Notable projects highlighted in this beautifully illustrated edition include the JK Place Hotels in Capri, Rome, and Florence; the Hôtel Marquis Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris; Palazzo Tornabuoni in Florence; Jagdgut Wachtelhof Hotel in Austria; and many more.
Leonardo Ferragamo is the son of eponymous luxury company founder Salvatore Ferragamo. He entered the family business at twenty and in 1976 created the shoes and men’s clothing and accessories departments. He was then in charge of the company’s international development in Europe, Asia, and South America. In 2000, he became CEO of Palazzo Feroni Finanziaria SpA, managing real estate and hospitality. Ferragamo is also founder and chairman of Associazione Partners Palazzo Strozzi, which works with the city of Florence to promote cultural activities and the arts.
Cesare Cunaccia is a writer, lecturer, curator, and journalist. He was editor at large for Vogue Italia and L’Uomo Vogue and the antiques consultant for Architectural Digest Italy. He has also contributed to the divisions of Architectural Digest in Germany, China, and Russia, as well as Connaissance des Arts, Opera magazine, and L’Oeil. Cunaccia has published a variety of books, particularly on the Italian artistic heritage, which have been translated into twelve languages.
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