Frank Muytjens has traded fashion for hospitality.
The former men’s chief has partnered with artist and entrepreneur Scott Edward Cole to open a luxury bed-and-breakfast inn in the Berkshires. Called the Inn at Kenmore Hall, it will open today.
The inn at 1385 State Road in Richmond, Mass., is a 6,675-square-foot, 18th-century estate that has been restored and modernized while conserving its historical Georgian architecture. It sits on 20 acres of woodlands, orchards and gardens in a town that is around two-and-a-half hours from Manhattan and one-and-a-half hours from Boston.
The inn will have five luxury rooms, each with a working wood-burning fireplace. There is also a one-bedroom carriage house suite with living room, kitchenette, sleeper sofa and private outdoor seating area. Pricing ranges from $450 to $650 a night.
“The minute we saw the property, we both knew that it would be our next endeavor,” Muytjens said. “Scott and I love the fact that the house has fostered so many artistic explorations. The deep-rooted creative history, combined with the stunning classical proportions of the Georgian architecture, is grand but not imposing. We have worked to preserve the architectural integrity, but imbue the inn with modern luxury.”
He added that after parting ways with J. Crew, he “moved to the Berkshires full-time to pursue this project.…To design a country inn was always one of my dreams. It just happened a little sooner than anticipated. Besides fashion, interior design has always been one of my passions, to me they go hand-in-hand. And Scott shares these interests, so it made sense to combine our efforts, and have other people hopefully enjoy them. When we found the house, it was pretty clear that this was what we were meant to do. It was the first house we saw, and didn’t look any further. The bones of the house are amazing, and all the architectural details were in great shape. It just needed a little bit of love, so it became about updating a classic.”
The estate was built in 1792 by Revolutionary War Minuteman Henry Sherrill, and over the years had housed a boarding schooI, Kenmore Hall, on the property. It had also served as a summer art colony. It opened as an inn in 1945.
Muytjens and Cole renovated the property using salvaged and repurposed pieces from the house along with pieces from local antique shops.
“We want our guests to feel immediately comfortable, but also enjoy a sense of easy luxury,” Cole said. There is a plan is to eventually add a restaurant, as well.
Muytjens grew up in the Netherlands, and worked as a fashion designer in Amsterdam before moving to New York in 1994. He worked for Polo Ralph Lauren for eight years as a men’s wear designer before joining J. Crew in 2002. He left the retailer in April.
Cole is a painter and musician who operated the Caffe Pomo d’Oro restaurant in West Stockbridge, Mass., for 19 years. In 2012, he purchased and reopened the 1780 Mercantile building known as the Monterey General Store in the Berkshires.