Miss Universe and Miss USA’s Chic Manhattan Makeover Officially Takes the Crown

Time Several Hours

Budget $ $$$

Skill Level

WORDS BY Morgan Goldberg

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Published on November 24, 2021

Yes, winning the annual Miss Universe competition means international recognition and glory, but perhaps you didn’t know the crown also comes with a one-year residence in a luxury New York City apartment. While the pad is shared with Miss USA, having a fellow titleholder as a roommate only doubles the glamour of calling such a stylish Midtown condo with sweeping Manhattan views “home.”

We know so much about the fashionable abode because, well, we helped overhaul it. In fact, Havenly lead designer Vivian Torres gave the living room a chic-yet-universal makeover so that champions with all different styles can enjoy the central area for years to come. “I wanted the design scheme to feel diverse and inclusive, and to embrace new titleholders who would eventually take over,” she explains. “I wanted anyone to feel at home in the space.”

glam gallery wall

Crafting Beautiful Backdrops

The primary goal of the project was to create two aesthetically-pleasing backgrounds for the titleholders, currently Miss Universe Andrea Meza and Miss USA Asya Branch, to showcase during video interviews and other media commitments. Each woman has a busy schedule, often involving separate yet concurrent obligations, so Torres needed to design non-competing vignettes that they’d be proud to host in front of.

Torres decided to curate an expansive gallery wall full of travel-focused photography, abstract illustrations, figure drawings, and unconventional portraits that hangs behind the navy blue velvet sectional. “I felt that it would age well, given its timelessness,” she reasons. “Gallery walls date back centuries, so contrary to the opinion of many, they are here to stay.”

eclectic luxe gallery wall

A set of side-by-side wall-mounted shelving units, which Torres styled to perfection with a wide range of books and eclectic decor, serves as the second backdrop. “I positioned them on a wall that was out of view of the sofa zone to accommodate the titleholders’ simultaneous work responsibilities,” she says.

white minimalist bookshelf

Achieving Functional Goals

In terms of function, the aim was to maximize square footage and create a multipurpose room that would be equally suitable for socializing, relaxing, sending emails, Netflixing and Zooming. Of course, the comfortable sectional works well for all of those activities, but Torres also incorporated an oval-shaped, white-and-brass desk paired with a mid-century chair by the window specifically for laptop productivity.

faux fur throw with navy sofa

“The home workspace was particularly important considering the room wasn’t originally arranged with ongoing COVID restrictions in mind and the fundamental impact they had on titleholders’ ability to fulfill their obligations,” Torres shares.

glam living room navy blue sofa

Elevating the Details

To complete the look and ensure it would be welcoming to victorious tenants to come, Torres wove in a balanced mix of textures and colors with pieces like a glam acrylic-and-gold coffee table alongside a sophisticated black-and-jute rug. The result is a cozy, chic home that the current reigning queens Andrea Meza and Asya Branch totally love. We’re willing to bet future ones will, too.

miss universe living room

Fast Five

Three items you can’t live without?

Andrea: “Coffee, my phone, and music.”

Asya: “Dogs, music, and sweatshirts.”

Last show you binged on the navy sectional?

Andrea: “Imposters on Netflix.”

Asya: “Criminal Minds.”

Weirdest thing we might find hidden in the cushions?

Andrea: “Hair pins or clothes tags because sometimes we have fittings in the living room.”

Asya: “Some form of makeup.”

What do you love most about the new living room?

Andrea: “Everything, but mostly the pink details around the room.”

Asya: “I love the color scheme. The artwork with gold accents all around in the decor and furniture is probably my favorite part.”

Favorite new piece in the living room?

Andrea: “The desk by the windows makes me so happy because I’ll use it A LOT.”

Asya: “The navy blue velvet couch, not only is it beautiful to the eye but it is also super comfortable.” 

Whatever your style, whatever your space, our designers are at the ready to take it up a notch. Discover your perfect match, starting with our style quiz.

Words by Morgan Goldberg