New York Model Management

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Before he was a real estate agent and a comic, James was and still is an accomplished interior designer. Growing up a child actor James began exploring other facets of his creative capabilities and was immediately drawn to design - fashion design. “I love creating something for people’s everyday use. I love showing people how to live.”  For undergrad James had his sights set on one place and one place only, New York City. He attended The Fashion Institute of Technology with studies in Menswear design, as well as Advertising and Marketing.  He worked for famed fashion designer Todd Oldham as a Junior Designer and fit model before returning to his acting career.

Approaching thirty years old, James began to explore his intrigue and natural affinity for design again. This time it was interior design that really piqued his interest. He attended The Art Institute where he held a 4.0 GPA throughout his studies and earned a degree in Interior Architecture. James caught the eye of his professor, Heather Maloney, Director of Hospitality for famed classic interior designer David Easton. Maloney plucked James directly from school to join the design team at David Easton. James learned first-hand from Easton and quickly made senior designer where he was lead designer for the St. Regis – Deer Valley in Park City, Utah, St. Regis – Bahia Beach, Puerto Rico, The Viceroy – Snowmass, Co. and assisted David in redesigning The Little Nell in Aspen.  

James was then offered a senior design position with the designer he’d been dying to work for since entering school, the illustrious, Jamie Drake. Drake mentored James instilling a mastery of color, texture and furniture design from the industry’s most innovative designer.  James honed his natural talent for creating sophisticated and unexpected schemes and from there, eventually formed his own design firm, JMA Design LLC.  Most important from this period was his design of New York Model Management’s new 5,500 square foot space in the Masonic Building at 71 West 23rd Street.  He partnered with his now resident architect, Jean Santalisis, Founder of J7 Architecture. Together they delivered a sleek and innovative design that got the stamp of approval from NYMM's top model, Naomi Cambell.

James’ keen sense of construction and finishes is invaluable to his buyers and uses that experience to negotiate when making offers. He can also renovate your home after you close!


Elevate your spaces with James's creative touch. Explore a portfolio showcasing his journey from fashion design to interior architecture, featuring projects that have left a lasting impression. Discover unique and sophisticated design solutions for your home or business.

Let JMA Reposition Your Home

My staging motto is simple….. Make your home look like the price tag you put on it! With my interior design experience and connections, I save my sellers money on staging while raising the value of their home. I’m also a top negotiator because I know construction and finishes like the back of my hand, so I know what’s negotiable, and what’s not. Below is a subtle but effective example of repositioning.

Before & After


Collaboration & Partnerships

Partnering with Jean Santelissis has changed me as a designer.  We are nothing alike in some ways and in sympatico others. I’m high-energy with a million ideas and want to get right to work and Jean is a cool cucumber who kindly waits until I’m done figuring it all out before he brings innovative ideas, I can’t believe I didn’t think of before him, that compliment my aesthetic perfectly. We’re both problem solvers who really want our clients to enjoy their space every day. We both think outside the box and look for what we don’t see and how we can make that a reality. He’s incredibly talented, and we laugh a lot.

Banquette designed by JMA Design LLC Fabric: Alexander McQueen provided by Christopher Hyland.
JMA Feature -

JMA Feature -

for CheZVuDecor

Michelle Trinh is quite possibly my favorite New Yorker and Millennial Power Woman, A marketing maven in the beauty business, Michelle was my next-door neighbor when I owned my condo in Harlem. She then became a client when I took off to Paris for three years to work with L’oreal Paris, I sublet and managed her property for her. Upon her return, I worked with Michele again for purchase #2 and found her this amazing duplex in the West Village. After I negotiated a great price on her behalf, I brought in Jean to bring Michelle’s vision of a Persian flat in New York City to life. From that purchase and design springs her new exploding social platform, ChezVuDecor. Michele is a décor diva who’s already formed a partnership with StreetEasy Concierge because of this journey. featured ChezVuDecorand I’d like to thank them for the shout-out.

Michele and I are just getting started, keep your eye on us. You never know what we’ll do next.

Work With JMA

A Boston native, James grew up acting and dancing in an entrepreneurial family. James ultimately realized that his love of interiors and knack for connecting with people were tailored-made for real estate. His ability to listen to his clients and truly hear what they want and need in a home cannot be taught.