Inside Holt Renfrew President Mario Grauso’s Toronto Pied-À-Terre
When you love quiet luxury and classic style, and live something of a jet-set lifestyle, it makes perfect sense to look to great hotels for decorating inspiration. That’s exactly what Holt Renfrew president Mario Grauso did when he needed a Toronto pied-à-terre. He and his partner, Serkan Sarier, went with a 2,000-square-foot condo above a five-star hotel in a tiny neighborhood.
The New York native was intrigued by the opportunity to create a new base in Toronto. He’d have the indulgence of more space and the chance to do something completely different with the decor. Alongside architect Brad Zizmor, he took direction from the building’s minimal ethos. Of course, fashion was an influence, too. “If you care about aesthetic values, that’s how you see your environment — you notice color, form, texture, geometry and light,” Mario says. His vision of a life lived stylishly is a reality in this modern tailor-made home. Click through for a look inside.
Mario (left) and his partner, Serkan, in their luxe Toronto condo.
The elevator opens directly into the condo’s front hall, where two dark hand-tooled leather chairs set the tone for the entire space and capitalize on one of Mario’s governing design principles: “symmetry rules.” A Fergus Greer photograph of Australian performance artist Leigh Bower speaks to Mario’s affinity for both photography and the spectacle of fashion.
Mario and Serkan prefer casual cocktails parties to formal dinners, so they opted to skip a dining room in favor of an expansive living room. The supersized space houses two mirror-image seating areas — Mario is a firm believer in the aesthetic power of pairs.
Freestanding bookcases showcase the couple’s extensive collection of commissioned pottery by ceramic artist Jono Pandolfi.
The marble floor is laid in a vertical brick pattern that elongates the hallway. An identical pair of chairs adds to the home’s balanced theme.
Punches of Joe Fresh’s signature hue on throw pillows — Mario was the president there before his role at Holt Renfrew — and blankets accentuate hotel-style bedding. To maximize the view, the fully retractable shades were installed solely in the bedrooms. Upholstered in the same nailhead fabric as the bed, the sofa is a cozy spot for watching TV.
A circa 1950 Lillian Bassman photograph of a Christian Dior corset sets a moody tone in the foyer off the elevator. Trimmed in stainless steel, a graphite black cabinet has visual heft and hosts a vignette that attests to Mario’s overall style: classic and luxe, executed with a restrained hand and rendered in crisp black and white.
Mario converted a tiny home office into the perfect walk-in closet for the couple. It boasts spectacular views, a luxury that his New York residence doesn’t have.
Mario’s 18-year-old son, Harry, who flies in for frequent weekend visits from college, loves to collect and display pieces from his travels with his father. He collaborated on his room’s grown up, camp-like feel, choosing the oil painting by Benedict Peyrat above the bed…
…and the 1920s army travel desk from 1stdibs. Framed images of Irving Penn by Cecil Beaton command attention above the desk. Two ball-like, marble-look side tables are unusual and playful touches.