The musician, actor, and founder of Kravitz Design lends his eclectic ethos to the SLS Hotel South Beach, where he created the penthouse suite and a private bungalow. Here, he reveals his inspirations, his love for Miami, and why he sometimes locks himself in hotel rooms.
Q: So what does a rock star know about hotel design?
A: I’ve been living in hotels for the past 25 years. When I have a day off on tour, I’ll say, “For twenty-four hours I’m not going to leave this room”—so it’s got to have a personal feeling.
Q: When did you discover your love for design?
A: My parents hung out with writers, artists, sculptors, and musicians who had beautiful homes regardless of their income. In the eighties, I got into modern design; my style was very minimal. Then I was influenced by Art Nouveau. I’ve been through a lot of phases.
Q: At the SLS South Beach, you worked with owner Sam Nazarian and Philippe Starck. What inspired your concept?
A: It’s based on a world traveler who collects a lot of things. Trunks are used as drawers, and there’s an antique-style console stereo system that looks like something your grandmother might have had.
Q: Why were you drawn to a project in Miami?
A: I have family in the Bahamas, so I visited Miami as a child and ended up living there quite a bit. It’s grown so much. There’s this blend of Europe and South America. It’s really an international city.
Q: What kind of hotels do you usually stay in?
A: I have a very high-low lifestyle. Put me in a trailer or a ghetto, and I’m fine. Put me in a castle or an hôtel particulier in Paris, and I’m happy. Probably because I grew up between Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, and the Upper East Side.