House & Garden | Diary of a Somebody

Tara Bernerd

A restful weekend leaves the design consultant raring to go

Tara Bernerd

December 05 2011
Tara Bernerd

Day: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

As my writing commitments draw to a close, I must thank the team at How To Spend It for asking me back and keeping me on my toes. A diary at the very least one would hope is a fairly accurate account of one’s day-to-day activities, or thoughts on various subjects. “Diary of a Somebody” is ambiguous and I presume you would now imagine reading sentence after sentence of a truly jammed-packed rock-and-roll weekend.

Alas not – well, alas perhaps for you; for my part, I am feeling fresh as a daisy following another very calm weekend and am shortly heading to my bureau for our staple Monday am get-together. This week Tommy, now back from Macau, will present a run-through of his trip and relevant feedback. Belgraves, the said and imminent hotel, means that the HK side of the team are here, so I am back on site at 10am.

This morning as I rang room service and ordered an egg-white omelette (with spinach) and one cappuccino with soya milk, I picked up my Blackberry to scan through my morning emails and took that extra 10 minutes in the cosiest of beds. I have to applaud The Dorchester where I am now in residence until I move (any day now). The rooms are reminiscent of a chintzy but very elegant country home, or the remains of the British day. Truly old-school flavour is matched by its army of the most delightful housekeepers, butlers and waiters.

The room service, which I have of course tried endlessly this weekend, is delicious and I genuinely feel as if I have been away, certainly pampered and perhaps overly indulged. Yet if you ever do find yourself at a time of fairly challenging stress, or simply fancy treating yourself or stealing off with your loved one, I would highly recommend it.

Saturday I was on the King’s Road, my childhood haunt and with no desire to start Christmas shopping at all – I was a little taken aback by the sheer numbers of people.

Saatchi Gallery has a German exhibition of Gesamtkunstwerk, which means, if you can even pronounce it, “new art from Germany”. It’s mixed media and very edgy, diverse and worth seeing. Occasionally if I am in town for a weekend I like to head there and have a wander around. Then there is always the market right outside on a Saturday – my lunch is therefore grazing the stalls.

From there to Office for laceless Converse (the only flat shoe I wear), which was terrifying. Chapeau to those working there; I really tried, but the whole experience of retail before Christmas, hundreds of shoes and very few people to help, had me running in the other direction.

Meanwhile, next on my very un-rock and roll list was Peter Jones. With a ridiculous amount of changes in my life, it had not occurred to me (despite my line of work) just how much household stuff a) I don’t have and b) I needed. This time I met Imthiaz, who was the ambassador of all ambassadors to PJ. We met in the linen apartment where I must have looked absolutely daunted by the task ahead. He virtually led me by the hand; I pointed, he wrote a list (albeit a very long one) and I left; yes, it was that much of a joy. Later that day he called and today the said items are being collected as I type. Not bad, hey!

Saturday night included downloading The Killing series two, a Thai chicken curry and lights out by midnight. Sunday, like any good Sunday, was a day of even more nothing. Papers, apps; altogether, a much encouraged lazy day.

So, as I said, I am raring to go. Later this morning I will prepare for a presentation with Berkeley Homes – it’s very important to us. We have recently completed a great project for them in Whitechapel, an exquisite Edwardian building, 75 Leman Street to be precise, which consists of 56 art deco-style lofts and penthouses and they’re so cool that I would like to buy one myself! At the moment, however, even getting a brochure is a challenge, but well worth it.

Therefore with a quite a week ahead, a lot of yacht activity to come, I wish you well and I had better get on with my week.

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