Fall 2021

An Award-Winning Local Talent Comes Home Des igner Char les Gr uwel l Returns to the Monterey Peninsula B Y B R E T T WI L BUR C harles Gruwell designs everything from sumptuous hotel rooms to upscale restaurants to tranquil court- yards to private high-end residences, all with an artist’s eye. The Pacific Grove native, who has returned home after decades of honing his craft both locally and in major cities, bases his designs on the principles he learned as an apprentice to prominent Bay Area designer Marlene Grant. “There is a whole set of rules involving scale and color and the use of black, and a whole perspective on art and accessories and lighting,” Gruwell says. “I have emulated a timeless, classical and artistic style my whole life. Most of [Grant’s] principles come from nature colors, the texture stems from nature, and the way she looked through any space was through natural eyes. She was an absolutely genius interior designer and way ahead of her time.” 154 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • F A L L 2 0 2 1 Interior Designer Charles Gruwell, with his dog Sophie, recently moved back to the Monterey Peninsula after years of working in large cities on projects like upscale hotels. Photo: Kelli Uldall