A key feature in the decor of Four Seasons Hotel George V Paris, lavish floral designs are the work of Jeff Leatham, whose extraordinary styling is attracting high praise in Europe’s most fashion-conscious city.
With his team of nine assistants, Jeff designs a new theme each week for the hotel, refreshing and rejuvenating his flowers sculptures on a daily, sometimes hourly, basis. Breathtaking and omnipresent, Jeff’s flowers are always integral to the setting, never merely a backdrop. With some 15.000 blooms purchased each month from the Netherlands, Jeff designs over 23 major arrangements for the Lobby and Public Areas. An additional 150 smaller bouquets decorate tables, consoles and desks throughout the property. Arrangements are individually styled for each guest room and suites; and a single stem or leafy cluster paints a splash of colour against the cool marble of guest bathrooms. Ranging from majestic calla lilies, tall and straight in giant urns, to beds of roses forming parallel rows in shallow bricks of art deco glass, Jeff’s designs reflect and enhance their surroundings. In the Lobby and through to Le Cinq, the hotel’s elegant restaurant, arrangements echo the sepia tones of the 17th Century Flanders tapestries that adorn the walls; whites, creams and earthy colours are used in counterpoint. At private dinners, banqueting tables become a canvas for blooms that pick up the wine tones from glowing goblets, while petal trails add softness to crisp linens.
￼Hailing from Ogden, Utah, Jeff is a self-taught artist, no doubt inspired by his three years in the fashion-forward world of runway modeling. In addition to crafting his breathtaking floral displays, Jeff collaborates with international luxury brands and venues; designs a line of crystal vases, candles and home sprays; recently completed his third book on floral décor; and stars on the American reality series Flowers Uncut on TLC.
Still, his role as artistic director remains closest to his heart. “My goal is to give our guests a new and unforgettable experience each and every time they visit, from the moment they enter the lobby to the moment they arrive in their room and at every turn and corner in between,” he says. “The best reaction is when jaws drop and people say they’ve never seen the same thing twice. That’s what keeps me excited and allows me to be my rock ‘n’ roll artist self.”
On 3 November 2014, in the sumptuous surroundings of the Château de Versailles and in the company of his family, Jeff Leatham received the medal of “Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres”, a distinction which crowns a career devoted to floral art in all its forms.