Friday, August 21, 2020

Exciting California Design News: The Dramatic New RH Marin Opens in Corte Madera

I recently attended the opening of the dazzling new three-level RH Marin gallery that presents furniture, art, and accessories in a handsome light-filled setting overlooking San Francisco Bay. It’s an exciting new destination

The gallery building is superbly sited with the dramatic silhouette of Mt. Tamalpais framing views to the west, and a surprising and serene unobstructed view across the bay to Mt. Diablo to the east.

Gary Friedman is to be congratulated for his clearly expressed vision, and his bold clarity. The RH team has created a masterpiece.

The handsome new gallery features a rooftop restaurant and coffee bar, a wine bar, an art gallery and a garden courtyard atrium.

There are also the beautifully airy and well-lit design studio and consultation rooms where clients can view swatches, samples, hardware, fabrics, and leathers with an RH designer.

It’s a compelling new destination that feels very residential and welcoming, and showcases the new Outdoor collections with great panache.

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RH Marin is the newest expression of the RH brand and the first design gallery in California with integrated hospitality including a glass-encased Rooftop Restaurant and Wine Bar that open onto an expansive landscaped terrace.

The experience at RH Marin is at once luxurious, inspiring, and understated. Clients can study and test-drive the upholstery, step into fully-designed bedrooms, and get a close-up look at the excellent General Public art collections.

Galleries feature installations of home furnishings devoted to exclusive new RH Interiors, Modern and Outdoor collections. I admired the bed linens, accessories, rugs, lighting and bathroom decor.

RH Marin also features an interactive Interior Design Atelier, providing professional design services.

Conceptualized as a transparent, multi-level contemporary structure filled with fresh air and natural light, the Gallery features a charcoal grey Venetian plaster exterior with an expanse of glass-and-steel French doors that open onto lush garden courtyards and terraces.

A walking path marks the Gallery’s exterior with decomposed granite and bluestone pavers, surrounded by handsome 100-year-old heritage olive trees.

At the top of a grand double floating staircase, visitors arrive into the Rooftop Restaurant with skylights and the sparkle of chandeliers. I admired the ingredient-driven menu and the year-round open terrace/ garden escape beneath a dramatic atrium with retractable glass walls, sparkling crystal chandeliers and heritage olive trees. 

Seamlessly extending from indoors to out, the restaurant opens onto unobstructed views of Mount Tamalpais to the west and San Francisco Bay and its wetlands to the east. The concept of classical trees and seating areas was influenced by the great classical gardens of Europe.

Situated just off the grand stair on level three, a climate-controlled Wine Bar houses wine and champagne selections from around the world, as well as limited production offerings from some of Napa Valley’s most renowned small vintners.

On level two, visitors discover RH Modern – the largest integrated assortment of modern furnishings, lighting, textiles and décor under one brand – as well as the RH Interior Design Atelier. This interactive studio features private client presentation rooms with state-of-the-art technology, and an RH Rugs showroom presenting an exclusive collection.

On the main level, guests will pass through a 25-foot threshold of retractable glass and steel doors, and continue into the central hall with its soaring 13-foot ceilings. Along the periphery, barrel-vaulted passageways lead to a classical arrangement of rooms featuring RH Interiors collections from international designers, as well as one-of-a-kind antiques and artifacts from Gary Friedman’s world travels.

NEWS:  Since Northern California is one of RH’s largest and most loyal markets, the company is busy planning more galleries in the region.

Next year the company will open RH San Francisco in the newly chic Dogpatch area at San Francisco’s Pier 70. There are plans afoot to re-design the RH gallery in the Design District.

And in the next few years, expect new gallery locations in Palo Alto, Walnut Creek, and Sacramento.

RH Marin is located at 1750 Redwood Highway in Corte Madera. 

Photo by Diane Dorrans Saeks

Photo by Diane Dorrans Saeks

My Favorite Bedding

I’ve always admired the RH Italian bed linens and cashmere blankets and throws. They’re classics and very elegant.

One throw this season I highly recommend is the new cashmere double-face blanket / throw with ivory on one side and pale grey on the reverse. It’s sumptuous and light and looks beautiful on the bed.

Look also for new embroidered bed décor and throws, along with blankets.

Photo by Diane Dorrans Saeks


“RH Marin is a deeply personal project given its proximity to our Center of Innovation and Headquarters in Corte Madera. It’s a reflection of our very best work to date – an architecturally inspiring and immersive experience that blurs the lines between residential and retail, indoors and outdoors, home and hospitality. Our entire team is proud and honored to bring this innovative concept to the town we call home.” — RH Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gary Friedman 

RH Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Gary Friedman made the following comments:


“The Bay Area is our home. It’s where we live, where we work, where our Center of Innovation & Product Leadership is located, and therefore where the vast majority of our strategy is conceptualized and brought to life.”


“Everything you see at RH Marin is a reflection of a hierarchy that leads to harmony. We believe the most pleasing environments are a reflection of human design. They are a study of refinement, balance, symmetry and perfect proportions. We respect the hierarchy between the environment, landscaping, architecture, furniture, and decor that create harmony. Ours is a discipline of addition by subtraction where less becomes more and calm is created through continuity. We subscribe to the principles of Vitruvius - that perfect proportions exist in human design, and beauty is produced by the pleasing appearance and good taste of the whole. Our hope is to both integrate into and elevate the local environments we inhabit.”


“Our RH Burger was called the best burger in New York by the Financial Times, and our Shaved Ribeye on Charred Garlic Bread just might be the best sandwich on the planet, so I generally flip and coin. For breakfast or brunch, the RH Scramble with shaved truffles should also be in the conversation, and on occasion rises to the top of my list, along with the truffled grilled cheese.”


RH Marin's Executive Chef is Paul Arenstam and the Hospitality Leader (GM) is Brandon Wilson

One of the highlights of a visit to the RH Marin gallery is the rooftop restaurant, which has wide-open terraces facing west toward Mt. Tamalpais.

The all-day menu is highly focused on fresh produce and simple, elegant flavorful preparations.


I was very impressed with the brilliantly flavorful coffee when I visited the RH Marin restaurant recently. The beans are intensely fragrant and I asked for more information.

For enthusiastic coffee lovers I pass on the following details about the exclusive RH coffee:

The coffee offered at RH Hospitality was inspired by Hiroshi Sawada, world-renowned barista, latte art expert and founder of Streamer Coffee in Tokyo.

The highly trained baristas at Streamer produced lattes showcasing perfect art and balance, only achievable through Sawada’s practice-makes-perfect philosophy emphasizing simplicity, teaching and community building around coffee.

RH uses Metropolis 'Project X' coffee beans (exclusive blend for RH).

This proprietary blend of beans is from Mogiana, Brazil. They are given a darker roast, creating a rich, chocolaty, nutty, flavor profile.

These beans are used for the espresso, drip coffee and cold brew and the flavor characteristics remain consistent through all of these extraction methods. Metropolis, the RH Hospitality coffee supplier, purchases only Arabica coffee beans. 

Photo by Diane Dorrans Saeks


Photos of the galleries and exteriors of RH Marin courtesy of RH.

Photos of vignettes of bedroom settings and new RH Modern designs by Diane Dorrans Saeks.

Find RH galleries in New York (Meatpacking District), West Palm, Chicago, West Hollywood, Boston, Houston, and Yountville. Each of these galleries has a restaurant or café.

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