17 Contemporary Living Spaces That Deliver On Refined Relaxation


Whether your taste leans bold or neutral, these contemporary living spaces showcase how to deliver comfortable elegance.


colorful modern living room

Photo: Hulya Kolabas

Vintage finds, contemporary pieces and pops of color carve out a warm gathering space in the living room, featuring Harvey Probber’s Nuclear cocktail table, Milo Baughman club chairs revamped in mohair, a Homenature Halsey sectional and a Joseph Carini area rug.


Living room with sofa, Bette and fireplace

Photo: Haris Kenjar

In the living room, Krieg included plenty of seating and spots to place drinks, such as the Holly Hunt sofa from Jennifer West Showroom, the Knoll chaise, a Verdesign armchair, the Magni Home Collection coffee table and an Urban Hardwoods side table. Lighting was an important consideration, and among the delicate pieces are an Ochre table lamp, a John Pomp floor lamp, and sconces by Alison Berger Glassworks for Holly Hunt.


A living area with a large gray sectional in front of a fireplace with a TV over it.

Photo: Werner Segarra

A laid-back space that fosters an “on vacation” vibe, the bright open family room’s reflective plaster walls create a soothing backdrop for a cozy seating area anchored by a vintage Moroccan rug from Bungalow. Monarch AV installed smart home technology in this room and throughout the rest of the house, creating an easily livable environment.


Open-format, double-height living room with white walls, colorful upholstery and framed artworks, and lots of natural light

Photo: Chris Edwards

Designer Dustin Fowler took a light-hearted approach in the living room, where groupings of colorful prints by Georgia artist Susan Hable for Soicher Marin supply modern contrasts to the classic architecture. A Suzanne Kasler-designed sofa for Hickory Chair continues the color story in pink RMCOCO fabric, accented by pillows in Designers Guild’s Shikhara Berry textile.


Sitting room with dark gray walls, metallic cocktail tables and large windows

Photo: Robert Peterson

Walls and ceiling awash in Sherwin-Williams’ Black Fox telegraph a moody vibe in the study, where a Design Within Reach sofa joins several Arteriors light fixtures and furnishings, including abstract cocktail tables in alternating brass and black finishes. The Larsen and Lee Jofa lumbar pillow fabrics were recommended by designer Lee Kleinhelter, who consulted with Lacourse during the project’s initial stages.


Shot of living and dining areas with water in background

Photo: Kevin Scott

A two-story great room forms the heart of the home. The Tufenkian carpet from Driscoll Robbins Fine Carpets defines the living area, appointed with a Holly Hunt sofa and Joseph Jeup side chairs, all from Jennifer West Showroom, alongside Berman Rosetti coffee tables from Trammell-Gagné. The windows are by Glasbox Windows & Doors, and the doors are by Sky-Frame.


View of living room facing fireplace. Two couches and pair of lounge chairs. Ship form chandelier above.Photo: Karyn Millet

In the living room, May arranged the Verellen sofas and swivel chairs, a Baker ottoman reupholstered in a Schumacher pattern, and a Theodore Alexander coffee table beneath a ship chandelier sourced from a beloved local restaurant. A Stark carpet grounds the space.


Spacious, open-format living room with Art Deco-inspired furnishings

Photo: Lauren Rubinstein

“Raising the ceilings by 8 feet made all the difference,” says designer Bill Musso, who selected Randolph & Hein swivel chairs from Ernest Gaspard & Associates for the living room. Clad in a charcoal Liaigre fabric from Jerry Pair, they echo the dark oak floors and woodwork by Fagan. A piece by Belgian photographer Isabelle Menin introduces color to the mostly neutral palette.


A living room a white sofa and pair of white chairs. Above a stone fireplace hangs a multi-colored painting.

Photo: Laura Moss

A carpet by Azadi Fine Rugs and an abstract painting sourced through Isabella Garrucho Fine Art in Greenwich, Connecticut, inject a contemporary note in the living room while still harmonizing with the more traditional lines of the architecture by Mark Candelaria and Meredith Thomson. On the sofa and armchairs is a crisp Larsen solid.


gray living room with large sectional, a fireplace and two chandeliers. The room has floor-to-ceiling windows

Photo: Michael Robinson

The formal living room of this home designed by Fred Wilson and Andrea Goldman still has a lake house vibe thanks to relaxed furnishings like the linen-covered custom sectional by Montauk, slated coffee table by John Rosselli and details like the wicker baskets.



A living area with white couches and a dark stone fireplace.

Photo: Laura Moss

The living room’s oversize, black-stained coffee table from Mandalay Home Furnishings in Garden Grove, California, balances the significant scale of the custom white sectionals. Low-profile Four Hands side tables and two glass Arteriors table lamps preserve the view.


contemporary living room with floor-to-ceiling windows

Photo: Guillermo Gusils Photography

In the living room of this Tiburon home, floor-to-ceiling windows showcase water views.


Double-height living room with chandelier and fireplace.

Photo: Ryan Gamma

A chandelier with 27 candle-like glass pendants by Shakuff illuminates the double-height living room. Douglas H. Kresge LLC installed the Lutron-powered lighting and the draperies made from a custom woven indoor-outdoor fabric by Calvin Fabrics. The armchairs are vintage Edward Wormley and the rug is by Marc Phillips.


formal living room with pearly handwoven rug and chandelier from cai designs

Photo: Ryan McDonald

The formal living room was inspired by the couple’s grayscale artwork by Susan Hall. “We pulled the subtle, steely tones of that piece into the space,” says designer Dan Rak of the pearly handwoven rug from Oscar Isberian and the monochrome Dômiers wallpaper by Nina Campbell that frames the fireplace. The chandelier from Cai Designs adds a touch of gold.


Living room with two sofas, low coffee table, striped rug, white walls

Photo: Julia Lynn

In the living room of this Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina retreat, a duo of Dmitriy & Co. Magari sofas, flanking an Andrianna Shamaris coffee table, provides ample seating for the family of five. The room’s semi-gloss ceiling—painted in Benjamin Moore’s Super White—offers a luminous contrast to soft plaster walls by local artisan Suzanne Allen. Designer Jenny Keenan commissioned the hanging lantern through The Urban Electric Co.


contemporary living room ottoman turned cocktail table trays

Photo: Werner Segarra

“The original architect, Ned Sawyer, had a minimalist international-style house in mind,” interior designer David Michael Miller notes. “What’s so compelling is how clean and restrained it is.” In keeping with that ethos, the new owner decorated the living room with a streamlined A. Rudin sofa upholstered in Theo fabric from J.W. Harris Inc. and a Michael S. Smith Inc. armchair from John Brooks Incorporated. With the addition of trays, a Liaigre Galet ottoman, also from John Brooks Incorporated, becomes a cocktail table.


contemporary neutral living room purple sofa

Photo: Stephen Kent Johnson

At one end of the sumptuous living room, a purple Le Jeune sofa wearing Pierre Frey velvet and topped with purple silk ikat pillows from Jerry Pair is pure Hollywood glamour. White chairs upholstered in Donghia fabric flank the Duran coffee table with a borosilicate glass top and silicon bronze base from KGBL in New York. The silk area rug is from Fort Street Studio, also in New York, and artist Carolyn Ray painted the Holland & Sherry linen drapery sheers.