I try to do as much as I can these days in sketchup, even roughly positioning textures which then get replaced by vray materials in 3dsmax.
The external terracotta louvres were given a cg-source.com multi-texture map to randomise the colour of each louvres very slightly, this really helped in adding some realism. (Maybe I could have used the new vray multi subtexture map? haven't figured it out yet)
All the furniture was chosen by the architect, the main items were:
- Drop table, Living Divani. Designed by Junya Ishigami - Garden plate, Living Divani. Designed by Junya Ishigami - Family Chairs, Living Divani. Designed by Junya Ishigami - Loop Chair designed by Willy Guhl - Extrasoft sofa by Living Divani
The principle HDR skies were 2003 for the night time shots and 1739 for the sunlight ones.