New York Social Diary

Jennifer Bradford Davis’
Across Forever Home
A New Boutique in Mustique
Benefits the Children of St. Vincent and the Grenadines

Mustique is one of the Lesser Antilles, the island chain that forms the eastern border between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. On the private island favored by royalty, rock stars and billionaires, New York based interior designer Jennifer Bradford Davis opened Across Forever Home, a one-of-a-kind, home furnishings shop.

Her business partner is Basil Charles. For over 30 years, he has owned world famous Basil’s Bar, Mustique’s hot spot and has met everyone who has passed through the island; a list that includes: A plethora of British aristos and Euros, as well as all the British Royal family beginning with Princess Margaret, Princes William and Harry, Kate Moss, Mick Jagger, Elton John, Tommy Hilfiger, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, David Bowie, Bryan Adams, Shania Twain, Hugh Grant, Elizabeth Hurley, David Duchovny, Allison Stern, Jamee Gregory and Carolina Herrera. 

Always the humanitarian, a portion of the shop’s proceeds will go to the Basil Charles Educational Foundation. Its mission: to improve the lives of the natives through scholarships to local children.

Davis, who made her reputation by working for Peter Marino as lead designer on Ocean Breeze, one of Mustique’s most famous villas, is known for interior spaces that pair layers of texture with uncommon and often rare materials. Her extensive travels influence her distinctive layered compositions.

By adding imported treasures, she imbues a sense of history and richness into her designs. Her talent is built on the strengths of architecture and the sensitivities of interior design. The result is comfortable, sophisticated, one-of-a-kind homes that reflect the individuality as well as the dreams of her clients.

In Across Forever Home, Davis sells an eclectic collection of objets d’art that sits on the shelves of the chic shop like masterworks in a gallery. The merchandise comes from all across the globe; hence the unusual shop name, because no matter where the item originates, it takes forever to get there. The exceptions are the objects made by local craftsmen.

Among the eye-catching treasures, there is an assortment of items Davis has designed, including tie-dye pillows, lamps and chairs. In addition, there are her tablescapes – individualized designs for setting a table that makes any meal a celebration.

Mustique rises from a watercolor palette of blues, beginning with the dark indigo of cloud shadow over the seas to brilliant cobalt, cerulean, and aquamarine. The island, which is three miles long and one and a half miles wide at its widest point, is composed of seven valleys between wooded hills that rise to a height of 495 feet.

The beaches are beautiful, powdery white sand and the land is lush and green with the manicured look of the English countryside. Over 60 villas populate the island. Each home, individually designed, is set on spacious, landscaped grounds with private terraces, fresh-water swimming pools and spectacular views. Some villas can be rented through The Mustique Company.

In  1958, Colin Tennant, the Scottish Baron Glenconner, purchased Mustique for less than $70,000. It was pretty much barren. He built a village for the natives, planted coconut palms, vegetables and fruits, and developed the fisheries.

The island is a part of the nation St. Vincent and the Grenadines and is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. In 1960, the British Royal yacht Britannia with newlyweds Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon dropped anchor in the harbor which allowed the royal couple to go ashore to accept a wedding gift from Lord Tennant: a small peninsula where Princess Margaret eventually built her holiday retreat “Les Jolies Eaux.”

In the 70s, the Island had its most notorious episode: Colin Tennant introduced Margaret to Roddy Llewellyn, 17 years her junior. The two developed a “loving friendship” as the Princess described it. They returned to Mustique many times. In February 1976, a picture of Roddy and the Princess in swimsuits was published on the front page of a London tabloid. The following month, the Snowdons publicly acknowledged that their marriage was over.

Mustique flourished. But the cost of running it depleted Tennant’s family fortune. He took on business partners. The Mustique Company was created by an Act of the British Parliament. The Company, which controls everything, maintains the integrity of the Island, insuring its privacy, natural environment and original charm. Eventually, Tennant lost his share in the island and went into exile on St. Lucia where he lives today. The story is told in the award winning 2000 documentary, “The Man Who Bought Mustique.”

Ready to start a new chapter in Mustique history, Davis and Charles hosted a smashing launch party for Across Home Forever. Just about everybody who was staying on the island stopped by for a look-see.

Davis put up a tent outside the front door with a view of Britannia Bay. Sangria was served. Guests included Roger Pritchard, President of The Mustique Company; The French Ambassador to Japan Philippe Faure and his wife Christine; Tatiana and Garret Copeland from Delaware; Pepe and Daniella Ambrosi from Italy; Eleanor Fryer from Geneva; Hans Schlamp and family from Bavaria; Camilla Woodwards from London; Chris and Randy Barlow from Saskatoon, Peter Penny and family; Ty Kovich; Natalie and Pierre Dassas; Patrizia Deleggwood; Douglas Hamilton; Stanley Buchtal; Matthew Weir; Michel De Vibraye; Woody Campbell; Kate Martin; Maya Hoffman; Nicki, James and Alexander Archibald; Susie Lea; Caroline Fleming; Marie-France Demolis; Tracy Bennett; and, from New York, architect Andrew Kepler, David Devito, Cathleen Sims and Roger Webster.

In the shop’s first week, Eloise Gonsalves, the First Lady of St. Vincent and the Grenadines dropped by and immediately became a fan.


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