Alfonso Valenzuela-Gumucio was born to an ancient patrician family in Santiago, Chile. The family settled in Chile in 1755, from the Basque Country where the Valenzuela-Gumucio family has documented records as early as the year 900.
An eclectic family of politicians, diplomats, bankers, farmers, conservatives, liberals, writers, architects and journalists inspired Alfonso to develop an independent voice and to look closely at how we live and interact with the earth and objects.
Alfonso’s love for cultivating fruits, vegetables, grafting trees, keeping bees, were nurtured by listening stories about his grandfather who had intense love for the land, and while maintaining his executive position at Universal Pictures in Chile.
Alfonso learned many trades by watching his talented mother Maria Isabel Gumucio Sotomayor. Her abilities in the kitchen complemented with her sense of style, allowed her to create fabulous family affairs. Among her many talents were antique restoration, painting, drawing and decorating. Alfonso’s love of food and entertaining complimented with a sense of style guided him to pursue a career in hospitality. Alfonso graduated top of his class with a degree in Hotel Management. His love of travel and adventure brought him to one of the most beautiful places on earth, the San Francisco Bay Area. Alfonso lives in an 1850s restored barn in Fairview with his life partner Douglas Rooney, their Welsh Corgies “Abby” & Emma, bees and 10 chickens.
After leaving the hospitality Industry, Alfonso decided to follow his passion for design, entertaining and style, creating a chic design shop in Dublin, California “Antiques & Eclectika.” For the past 4 and half years, Alfonso has created a space where people can acquire furnishings and decorative objects; comfortable, stylish, collectable and eclectic. Alfonso has plenty of design advice for clients in need. On September 30th the store closed its door and it will conduct its business on-line only.