Art Deco
Architecture Luxury Real Estate Property Galleries

Iconic Architecture: The Art Deco Movement

In this Luxury Defined edition, we celebrate a golden era of the 20th century with a collection of homes that evoke the Machine Age exuberance of the Art Deco style

Art Deco debuted in Paris at the International Exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Artsof 1925.

The highly stylized, eclectic design movement succeeded the ornate, organic forms of the Art Nouveau movement. In that short but nonetheless profound interval between the two world wars, 1919-1939, Art Deco was in essence a physical interpretation of the new technology, affluence, excitement, and glamour of the Machine Age. 

In architecture, the streamlined buildings symbolized the speed and movement of locomotives, automobiles, and ocean liners; its decorative elements took inspiration from avant-garde artistic movements (Cubism, Surrealism, and Bauhaus), classical antiquity, even Egyptian revivalism—spurred by British archaeologist Howard Carter’s 1922 discovery of King Tut’s tomb.  

Art Deco’s enduring legacy is immortalized in our architecture, from the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris to the Chicago Board of Trade Building to Rockefeller Center and the Chrysler and the Empire State buildings in New York City.  

And it lingers in our hearts and homes: Witness these timeless exemplars of Art Deco architecture in the present moment. 

1. Residence #31A at the Palmolive Building, Chicago, Illinois 

Art Deco apartmentArt Deco apartmentArt Deco apartmentArt Deco apartmentArt Deco apartment

Gloriously renovated, finished, and detailed, this full-floor, 5,500-square-foot trophy home in Chicago’s majestic Palmolive Building skyscraper has been featured in many interior design and architectural magazines.   

Ten luxurious rooms begin in the private elevator foyer, its terrazzo floor by John Caretti & Co. The main living spaces—reception room, salon, sitting room/lounge, library, and adjoining office—are floored in French oak panels of patterned parquet de Versailles. 

The salon features an opal glass fireplace mantel and stunning millwork. The library fireplace, one of three in the home, is mounted with a red leather surround. The kitchen, clad in white glass walls with brushed nickel rivets, has an orange leather banquette with a view of Lake Michigan and Oak Street Beach.   

Three bedrooms, three bathrooms, and one partial bath provide opulent period fixtures and finishes. The primary suite bathroom is appointed in Calacatta and Belgian black marble.

Adjacent is a vast walk-in closet (featured in Architectural Digest), with bleached walnut custom cabinetry; a grand, leather-topped chest of drawers; and window seats overlooking the city skyline.   

The property comes with two on-site parking spaces, with four more available for purchase. 

2. Stylish Sea-View Villa in La Californie, Cannes, France 

Art Deco villa
This opulent villa in the exclusive Cannes neighborhood of Californie retains its original Art Deco splendor.

This stylish, six-bedroom villa occupies a secluded, sea-view plot in La Californie, an exclusive enclave in the hills above Cannes. 

The home’s cool, curvilinear forms are the embodiment of Art Deco glamour. The dazzling white façade is offset by ornamental elements and decorative glass blocks to capture the Côte d’Azur sunlight.   

The interiors are the epitome of Roaring Twenties elegance. The reception hall and its grand terrasse function as an indoor-outdoor entertaining space. Pocket doors open to a formal dining room with a hand-painted mural scene of Ancient Rome.  

Other Art Deco flourishes include ziggurat (stepped) ceilings, wood floors inlaid with gold leaf, decorative wall sconces, and a helical staircase, with chrome banister, housed within a two-story rotunda. 

The gardens are private, with multiple terraces for relaxing alfresco and an infinity pool overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and the Massif de l’Esterel. 

A separate caretaker’s apartment and a two-car garage round out the amenities. 

3. Designer Duplex at Tip Top Lofts, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Art Deco buildingArt Deco buildingArt Deco buildingArt Deco buildingArt Deco building

This two-bedroom, two-bathroom contemporary loft is a corner duplex in the landmark Tip Top Lofts building, a classic Art Deco building completed in 1929, on the Toronto Harbourfront.  

Dramatic, two-story ceilings and double-height windows illuminate the voluminous interior spaces, wrapped by an L-shaped terrace that overlooks the leafy cityscape. The open-plan first level begins with an intimate reception lounge which opens to the heights of the living room, dining space, and gourmet kitchen. 

Upstairs, a glass balcony encases two en suite bedrooms, enhanced by luxurious, marble-accented baths.  

Brilliantly renovated common spaces, a lounge, and reception lobby recreate the era’s Art Deco architectural motifs and interior designs. The former home of menswear retailer Tip Top Tailors Ltd today offers 252 luxurious condominiums. Amenities include a party room, fully kitted gym/exercise room, and a 24-hour concierge. 

4. Private Palace in Fez, Morocco 

Art Deco palace
This private palace within the old city walls of Fez enchants with its Moorish design elements and classic Art Deco details.

This UNESCO-protected heritage home is close to the historic blue gates of the ninth-century Medina of Fez, the cultural capital of Morocco. 

The striking white stucco riad was designed in the Moroccan Art Deco style and sensitively refurbished in recent years.

Gracing the interiors are exquisite finishes of Tadelakt (ancient lime plaster), marble, stucco, and carved wood. All the principal rooms have bioethanol fireplaces and either a terrace or a balcony overlooking the medina and, in the distance, the Middle Atlas Mountains.  

In the Moorish tradition, there’s a hammam and a central courtyard—this one with a sumptuous pool and sundeck under the shade of towering palms.  

Contemporary updates include air-conditioning, and an elevator serving all floors including the roof terrace.  

This unique property has dual use as a private residence or a guesthouse. 

Looking for an Art Deco masterpiece to call your own? Begin your search here.