Through the Looking Glass

Peek into a modern wonderland in the hills of Ventura

“The rooftop terrace literally has a 360-degree view. It covers the entire top of the master bedroom."


n interior designer by profession, Philip Nimmo is an artist at heart. Based in West Hollywood, he’s worked on projects around the globe but found his dream client right here in Ventura. “The world should have more people like her,” he says of the young homeowner, who prefers to remain out of the spotlight. “She is loving, caring, and philanthropic, an amazing girl.” Here, we step into the mod glass house Nimmo designed and built in our local hills—and let him paint the scene with his own words.

“I’m really proud of this kitchen—it’s completely indoor and outdoor. See the spheres? There’s a panel of glass; we have glass pocket doors that slide open. Structurally, it was a feat to figure out how to make it work, but we did it. The light fixture, from Hudson Lighting, is a metal frame with individual strands of chain. The lights are within the body of this ‘creature.’”

“Once again, not a huge space. There’s a terrace above the master bedroom, so you see the staircase. There’s just the bed, a fireplace, and a chair with a side table (one of my designs). The candy red imitation crocodile headboard is my design, too. Above the bed is a painting commissioned from artist Rimi Yang; it’s taken from a photograph of Audrey Hepburn in a crowd of people. The client loves many of the stars from that period. Because it’s a small space, we wanted to get as much light in as possible. We were fortunate to have a balcony outside the bedroom, but rather than a see-through railway we had to do a solid raining to ensure privacy.”

“What is really cool about this structure is that you can push a button and all the sliding doors automatically open. You don’t have to touch them. The window on the far right, next to the bronze bowl, also goes back into the wall, creating full indoor-outdoor living. The other thing that is cool: we have built-in heaters in the ceiling. You walk around the spa to get to the terrace that is above the master bedroom … The chaise material is from Perennials; it’s called Pebble, a cut velvet exterior fabric trimmed in burnt orange. Those are petrified wood side tables. The antique Burmese stone Buddha came from Lee Lacy Gallery. On the limestone wall, we put a large piece of marble as a backdrop for the Buddha.”

“The client loves the color pink, so we found beautiful pink quartz for the tub enclosure (and shower, which you don’t see) that is all backlit. The cabinet is bamboo. The wallpaper is a beautiful treated raw silk from Phillip Jefferies that holds up really well. Because it’s solid glass, from the deck of the tub to the ceiling, the garden is really a part of the bathroom. It almost feels like a rain forest, with an Asian side garden with miniature bamboo. It’s completely private, but the fence, which complements the lines of the house, helped secure that privacy.”

“When my client bought this house, it was a dilapidated, 1940s ranch-style house; if you huffed and puffed, you’d blow it down. We were very involved in the architectural design of the building. With all the zoning, and being a house on the hill, we had to follow the original footprint, so we reconstructed the layout. This is the great room, which includes the dining room and the kitchen to the side. The photograph reminded me a bit of ‘Alice In Wonderland’ – it’s a mushroom (purchased thru Holly Hunt), and it set the tone for the house. It’s not the largest space in the world, so we had to fit in as much as we could without being too tight. We wanted to create an open loft feeling … What we really liked: all the colors are natural and warm. The floor is Crema Marfil limestone, and we chose white walls, white ceiling, and light-colored floors so the cabinetry would pop.”

Interior Design, artistic metal, furnishings, and lighting


Back to top