July 5, 2016

Guillaume Gentet Designs a Hamptons Home in Summery Pastels

A Hamptons investment home is a study in summery pastels with a modern vibe.

by Arlene Hirst interior designer Guillaume Gentet photographer Hulya Kolabas


Guillaume Gentet is not a typical interior designer: he is a builder and entrepreneur as well. The French-born designer created a 4,000-square-foot house in Watermill, in partnership with a contractor and developer who hope to turn the concept into a group of homes that they will build in the community and elsewhere on Long Island.

The house sits on a pristine piece of property that faces a swath of acreage held in trust by the Nature Preserve. When they saw it they knew it would be perfect. The back of the house looks out over this protected woodland, with unobstructed views and the assurance that there will never be anything to mar the landscape.

Gentet's inspiration for the design came from an old Victorian manse that sat at the end of the street. "I love gingerbread houses," he says. "I want to bring the style back to the Hamptons but with modern amenities and whimsy."

The vanity from Restoration Hardware, Gentet says, reminds him of a dental cabinet.

He conceived the four-bedroom, six-bathroom house with summer house users in mind. The bathrooms are all en suite to ensure privacy. The den can be turned into an extra bedroom; handy, he says, when unexpected guests descend for the weekend. "When you have a house in the Hamptons you find that you have friends that you never knew about," he jokes. The kitchen has two of everything from dishwashers to ovens to sinks. "It's perfect for buyers who are kosher," says Gentet, adding that it is also a plus for people who like to entertain.

One of the most striking features of the design is the color palette. "I love pastels," he says, and he uses them artfully both indoors and out.

Far from a typical developer's construction, the walls are covered in three layers of materials: the plywood base has been covered with sheetrock, which was then clad with extensive molding. The wide plank white oak floors, which provide a unifying element throughout the house, are finished with old-fashioned beeswax.

The house will be sold unfurnished, but buyers will have the option to purchase the furnishings as well. Gentet's future plans include a shop in Palm Beach next year, where he will carry the items that aren't sold with the home.

Gentet and his husband, architect David Carpenter.

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