Q&A: Lenny Kravitz on His Design Concept for the SLS Hotel South Beach
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.