Stuff rich people like: part 2
I was recently lucky enough to nosey around some very fancy places, including one of the top five lodges in the world. What I noticed is that wealth has a very distinctive look.
While I have written about this before, here is some updated information based on my recent experiences.
If you want to fake being rich, here are some design tips:
- Dead animals
Stock up on taxidermied water buffalo heads, pheasants and trout, as well as possum and deer skin rugs. It doesn’t matter if these species don’t hang together in the wild; once they’re mounted on a wall, they’re all friends. Throw in some beaten up leather Chesterfields and Prince Charles is your uncle.
- Wine cellars
What would look like a creepy Fritzl dungeon to most people, becomes a wine room in the hands of the ultra wealthy. Convert a torture rack into a dining table (the distressed look is de rigueur), fill the catacombs with cases of wine and pop up a chandelier and you’ve got a valid place to practice alcoholism in style.
- Tartan and rugs
Huka Lodge looks suspiciously like a giant tin of Scottish shortbread. Forest green, ruddy-cheeked red and navy feature heavily in mohair throws, Persian rugs, doonas, cushions and velvet chaise longues. All guests are supplied with formal dining kilts in their family tartan (OK, that’s a lie).
- Beige and ivory
If it’s not rocking the highland look, you can safely assume that everything in the room is white (pronounced ‘aaahvory’) and beige, which is highly impractical considering these places are surrounded by lawns (that are mown fastidiously to a prescribed 5cm height), ducks (that shit prodigiously) and guests that walk around obliviously. I feel for the housekeeping staff.
- Old stuff
What is all that stuff? The rooms are filled with the kind of old tat that would get thrown out in a deceased estate. Antique fishing nets, pewter pint steins, carved Indian plinths, ornate candelabras and African baskets full of old lawn bowls. There is a wildly expensive homewares shop next to my office and I have always wondered who would buy a $2000 ornamental shell necklace from Cote d’Ivoire. Now I know.
- Open fires
Throw out that energy efficient heater, you dirty proletariat. If you want to look rich, you need an extremely high maintenance, environmentally unsustainable wood fire. Once installed, you can make selfish love to your mistress/toy boy in front of it (preferably on the pelt of an endangered animal), slug back some expensive whiskey, shoot at things for fun and generally act like a dickhead. In no time, you will be the next President of America.