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I N T E R I O R S A N D A R C H I T E C T U R E F R O M T H E G U L F, L E V A N T A N D B E Y O N D

September 2017 w w w.d e s i g n - m i d d l e e a s t.c o m



LIGHT WISE Smart lighting control systems are a rage in the Middle East

DUBAI’S OWN RAINFOREST Find yourself close to nature at The Green Planet

Take a tour of the amazing art installations at Dubai Design District










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Cover Story




Haute Hotels




Speaking Statistically

Focus on art installations at Dubai Design District

What comes first- design or sustainability? DJ Armin from ZAS Architects speaks his mind

Exploring the fashionable hotels of Milan

Need to save energy is pushing the demand for innovative lighting control systems

Booming hotel industry is resulting in high demand for outdoor furniture September 2017








Feature- Sustainable designs

In conversation with Hazem Al Zaro from Zaro Architects about design, future plans, and more

Smart trends that support health, nature, and hence result in productivity

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Décor Review


Through Pictures

A look inside the very stylish and uber chic Japanese restaurant, Katsuya

A pictorial feast of ‘The Green Planet’, Dubai’s very own tropical rainforest




September 2017

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Editor’s Note Newsmakers Events Wish List Tips & Tricks Pick of the Month

Sometimes even staying in, feels like a holiday.

Planned entirely around Fujairah’s picturesque terrain, make a home at the stunning destination complex of Mina Al Fajer, where you can enjoy scenic views of the Gulf of Oman and state-of-the-art amenities offered in the area. Nestled in the heart of the complex, Fairmont Fujairah Beach Resort provides residents a five-star escape from the ordinary with its array of five renowned restaurants, lifestyle options and recreational facilities, all within easy accessibility from the piazza level equipped with a marina and helipad. Discover a unique lifestyle community at Mina Al Fajer - where luxury, beauty and Create your Fujairah memories today. serenity come together to turn everyday into a holiday. +971 9 204 1111 | For more information, please call +971 9 243 0550 or visit

CEO Wissam Younane Managing director Walid Zok Director Rabih Najm Group publishing director Diarmuid O’Malley Group sales director Joaquim D’Costa +971 50 440 2706

Business development director Rabih Naderi +966 50 328 9818

Deputy Editor Roma Arora roma@ Art director Ifteqar Ahmed Syed Photography Dhananjay Shekar Poojari Marketing executive Mark Anthony Monzon Contributor Melanie Mingas

Welcome Time is flying, and it’s been almost a month now that I joined this amazing place jam-packed with the most humble and co-operative team. It feels like I was here forever, and while I’m holding on to this thought with a smile on my face, the printer guy is waiting for me to finish this note for the final pack up of the September issue. Coming back to the edition, it has a right mix of art, architecture, and design. We wanted to do something on art and what better way to start than the art installations at Dubai Design District (d3). The cover story explores the amazing artwork displayed at the campus of d3. This month our feature highlights the importance of lighting control systems in commercial spaces, and as you would flip through the pages, the lush green images from ‘The Green Planet’ would make you visit this place for sure. We’ve tried to make this issue more appealing in terms of design and reader-friendly as well. The editorial has also been rehashed a little bit with bringing in some new additions like pictorial story, tip & tricks, and pick of the month sections. These pages are fun, and with a lot of take away ideas. I am personally hooked on to the pick of this month! Happy reading! Roma Arora

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SUBSCRIBE PO Box 502511 Dubai, United Arab Emirates T +971 4 420 0506 | F +971 4 420 0196 For all commercial enquiries related to Design Middle East contact T +971 50 504 0182 All rights reserved © 2017. Opinions expressed are solely those of the contributors. Design Middle East and all subsidiary publications in the MENA region are officially licensed exclusively to BNC Publishing in the MENA region by Design Middle East. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission of the publisher. Images used in Design Middle East are credited when necessary. Attributed use of copyrighted images with permission. Prices are quoted in US dollars. Printed by International Printing Press

September 2017



Sustainability is the key! The only way to tackle energy issues in the region is through practical and sustainable solutions. The bottom line is to reduce a building’s energy consumption and emissions by furthering technological advancements in design, materials and construction techniques for developing Dubai’s future buildings. Speaking ahead of his presentation at the Cityscape Global Conference in September 2017, Tariq Khayyat, head of region – Middle East for Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA), believes that Dubai has significantly pushed the boundaries of sustainability by supporting and implementing new, innovative solutions to help create a more sustainable city. Khayyat said, “Sustainability is no longer a choice option within the industry. One of ZHA’s current projects in the region, the Bee’ah Headquarters in Sharjah, has environmental considerations woven into every aspect of its design. We’ve created a design in response to the natural environment, minimising energy ,and resource consumption.” “By marrying innovative digital design with ecological sound materials and sustainable construction practices, ZHA does not look at the disparate parts, but works to understand them as a whole; delivering practical solutions to the defining challenges of our era.” Just one-day ahead of the Cityscape Global exhibition, the conference will host keynote presentations and panel discussions from leading industry experts on Sunday, September 10, 2017 at The Conrad Dubai. The values of executing sustainable practices in building design and architecture are echoed by Carlos Ott, founder of Carlos Ott Architects. He said, “In my practice, we have been designing sustainable projects for years, starting with projects in Canada and Germany and now all over the world, including in the MENA region.” “Today, with access to new and more sophisticated materials, technology and population growth and aspirations, internationally I expect an even faster and


September 2017

Tariq Khayyat, head of region-Middle East, Zaha Hadid Architects

deeper change internationally. For example, the substitution of fossil fuels by sustainable ones will force us to re-think our strategies and solutions.” Under the theme ‘Reshaping the Industry’, the full-day forum will provide insights into the real

estate and property sector with a morning session on the Market Overview, and split afternoon sessions; the Real Estate Brokers Programme and Architecture Programme. Cityscape Global will take place from September 11-13, 2017 at Dubai World Trade Centre.

Intelligent BMS for Al Bustan Centre and Residence Al Bustan Centre and Residence integrates BMS

Al Bustan Centre and Residence has recently launched Building Management System (BMS) with a primary objective to reduce cost on energy while increasing the productivity of its machinery across the property. The initiative has been launched to reduce energy consumption and manage costs, whilst enhancing guest experience and comfort, by offering a high degree of personal control over the guest room environment. Light and temperature control plays a vital

role in the overall guest experience of a hotel room and by installing this new energy saving project initiative, the hotel-apartments will be able to achieve a decent saving in the near future as lighting alone typically accounts for 25% of an organisation’s electricity consumption. Control of the room environment by the guest and hotel when the room is unoccupied adds value and significantly reduces energy costs. Moussa El Hayek, chief operating officer, Al Bustan Centre and Residence, said: “We are

proud to launch the hotel apartments management system for light, temperature, and blind control that integrates with building management systems. The solutions are contemporary designed, energy efficient control options that help differentiate a property or hotel, where guests can step into a room in which lights and shades automatically adjust to a predetermined welcome scene. This is a milestone project in developing better ways to enhance the property infrastructure and the betterment in the long run.”

Western Furniture partners with Abu Dhabi Housing Authority Western Furniture has entered partnership with Abu Dhabi Housing Authority in showcasing its products for the beautifully landscaped villas under the Jebel Hafeet Project, a housing project as a form of Sogha or ‘gift’ to the Emirati families living in the city of Al Ain. American brand Magnussen, distributed by Western Furniture here will furnish the villas with the finest solid wood sofas, dining tables, and beds complemented by the stylish home

accents including curtains, pillows, and center pieces. Mikdad Bhabhrawala, CEO of Western Furniture, said: “It is with great privilege to be partnered with the Jebel Hafeet Project under the Abu Dhabi Housing Authority in sharing its vision of leading the capital’s infrastructure ambition by providing integrated, cost effective, and sustainable delivery and maintenance of the government assets.”

The inside view of one of the houses in Jebel Hafeet housing project

September 2017



Matt Squires takes on the big role at SSH

The lamp is characterised as environmentfriendly as it does not contain mercury or generate heat

Dubai Lamp to be mandatory in new buildings from December 2017

One of the prestigious projects by SSH is Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre

The project management firm, SSH Kuwait recently announced that after five years at the helm, CEO Bob Hope will be stepping down from his position and will be handing over to Matt Squires, SSH’s current COO, as part of the group’s ongoing succession strategy. Hope will remain in a supporting advisory capacity for the remainder of the calendar year and will also continue to provide ongoing consultancy support to the group chairman. SSH chairman Omran Hayat said: “On behalf of myself and the board of SSH, we would like to thank Bob for five years of outstanding service to SSH and in leading the transformation of the group from being a highly respected local design

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consultancy into a leading multidisciplinary design consultancy group across the MENA region. He has developed a solid leadership team at SSH and, as part of this team, Matt has been developed as his successor. This news demonstrates both our commitment to internal staff development and the success of our succession strategy.” Squires said: “I have greatly enjoyed working with Bob in transitioning the business over the past five years in my role as chief operating officer. I am excited to work with Omran, the board and the entire SSH family to continue to strengthen SSH’s standing, and support our talented staff to realise their individual potential within a challenging, fun environment.”

There’s so much happening in the region when it comes to energy saving. According to a memo released by the municipality to all consultancies, contractors and developers operating in the emirate, the use of the energy-efficient ‘Dubai Lamp’ has been made mandatory for all new developments run by the Dubai Municipality. The recent initiative includes the development of the world’s first commercially viable 200 lumen per watt LED lamp developed by Philips, which cuts electricity use by up to 95% and can last an average of 25,000 hours longer than a conventional lamp. Layali Al Mulla, director of DM’s Buildings Department, said all consultancies have to develop a proper mechanism relevant to the nature of their projects whereby commitment to the use of Dubai Lamp has to be ensured across all developments, including those under-construction. Effective December 2017, Dubai Municipality will verify the use of the Dubai Lamp across all buildings and its use will be one of the conditions for issuing the Building Completion Certificate, the report said.

When art meets technology It’s always interesting to witness something new. Recently, Samsung launched the latest lifestyle TV, The Frame at Marina Home in Mall of the Emirates. Based on the new innovative technology, The Frame looks like a picture frame hanging on a wall when ‘Art Mode’ is on. Instead of fading to black like a conventional TV, the lifestyle TV’s display transforms into a work of art, letting the users select custom-designed digital art pieces from The Frame. With more than 100 art pieces in 10 different categories – including landscape, architecture, wildlife, action, drawing and more – to choose from, it is sure to please every design preference. Paired with the numerous options for art layouts and colors, as well as customizable accessory options including interchangeable bezels and an optional Studio Stand, it truly complements the user’s living space. “With homes in the region becoming increasingly non-conformative to prescribed décor, today’s living spaces certainly demand

The Frame utilises a brightness sensor to seamlessly adjust to ambient lighting and blend into the interior

evolving artistic experiences. The Frame’s ability to reflect moods and moments gives home owners the power to mature into their own journeys with art,” said Sahar Vakil, head of brand development, Marina Home. “Design starts with people – their lifestyle, tastes and aspiration define design,” said Haris Munif, head of product marketing –

Consumer Electronics Division, Samsung Gulf Electronics. “We believe that the integration between lifestyle, design, art and technology is becoming increasingly prominent in the everyday world. We created The Frame to provide consumers with a TV that beautifies their space and lives in perfect harmony with their interior décor.”

Emaar hires new corporate director Emaar Hospitality Group welcomes on board Morgan Tuckness as corporate director-design & technical services. Tuckness will be responsible for setting up and maintaining development and design guidelines, and the physical criteria for the development of new-build hospitality projects. She will also be mandated with ensuring that all requisite design and technical service standards are executed in accordance with the guidelines to deliver on-brand projects. She will report to Olivier Harnisch, chief executive officer of Emaar Hospitality Group. Olivier Harnisch said: “With a fast-growing footprint of hotel projects by Emaar Hospitality Group and three distinctive lifestyle hotel brands, it is important that we focus on our branding philosophy and design standards,

which set us apart. Today, we work closely with developers in hotel project development right from design stage to operations, and Tuckness, who brings extensive expertise in the area, will lead all design and technical services aspects of our projects. She will also focus on introducing sustainable practices that help minimise the carbon footprint of our projects.” Tuckness said: “It is my privilege to join Emaar Hospitality Group, one of the fastestgrowing and globally recognised hotel operators. The operational and upcoming projects of the group are defined by high standards of design excellence and unique brand differentials. I look forward to being part of the organisation as it further expands its footprint to innovative projects in the UAE and new markets.”

Emaar Hospitality Group appoints Morgan Tuckness

September 2017

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arty affair

Design Middle East takes an art tour of the Dubai Design District (d3) which hosts some of the spectacular art installations by creative minds, which are treat for the eyes

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September 2017

Chic Sheep

One of the most vibrant art installations that one would come across at d3 is ‘Chic Sheep’. Nakkash Gallery and d3 presented a disruptive public art installation at ‘Meet d3’ in December 2016, dispersing 100 ‘Chic Sheep’ around the district as a symbol of new beginnings and the promise of the future. For this project, Nakkash Gallery worked in collaboration with other creative partners including All Things Mochi, Ayah Al Bitar, Fadi Sarieddine, Monogram and Sauce. This was a collaborative, community, CSR initiative that resulted in an auction to benefit the Al Jalila Cultural Centre. Location: These are scattered across the design quarter

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The Lucid Dream

Invited by Tashkeel Studio and inspired by lucid dreaming, Ruben Sanchez created this installation with the idea of placing oneself far from reality for a minute, and then inviting him/her to interact and be part of a trippy dream. In an average lifetime, the human being spends around six years dreaming, but what is really happening during this time still remains a mystery, impossible to decipher. Located between our consciousness and the dream state, the ‘Lucid Dream’ allows us to control and modify our actions or scenarios, aware that we are living in a dream whilst making everything possible within the limits of our imagination. Location: Outside between building 6 and 7 (in the core)

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The Untitled Swing Project

With play and imagination in mind, Jordan’s designers drew on the swing, or ‘murjeiha’, to represent their collective childhood. The design team included-Dina Haddadin, Omar Al-Zo’ bin, Rand El Haj Hassan, Rula Yaghmour and Arini (curator). The swing seats represent the solid and grounded elements of the installation, using the heritage from the Palestinian and Jordanian geology. Each stone is from a different part of the two countries, gaining their names from the various cities and villages of their source. Location: Outdoor area between building 9 and 10

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Bike ‘d3’

Hinjal Kumar, a final year architecture student at American University of Sharjah and the only student in the top 10 finalists of the Urban Commission’s annual design competition won in 2016 with ‘Bike d3’. The design is all about promoting lifestyle improvement as much as a response to the brief of shelter. Location: Outdoor area between building 6 and 7


A neat series of simple, minimalist, modular elements rule the Superfuturedesign’s communal table installation at d3. Winner of the 2017 Urban Commissions project, Mu.Table comprises a series of modular elements composed of concrete volumes, and marine plywood table tops mitred at 45° angle to lock into a welded steel structure without the use of screws. Apart from the great design, the installation has functional properties too. One can use the table as a perfect seating arrangement during lunch hours or a quick coffee with friends. Location: Outdoor area between building 4 and 5

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Spun Seat

British designer Thomas Heatherwick is displaying his artwork at d3 called Spun Seat. The chair has been designed for Italian manufacturers Magis and is made of rotation-moulded plastic. Using a single profile and rotating it through 360°, Spun is a functional spinning top. Measuring 65cm high by 91cm in diameter, it is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. Location: These are scattered across the design quarter

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DESIGN OR SUSTAINABILITY? It’s a tricky one to answer! DJ Armin, managing partner, ZAS Architects believes that for an architectural solution to be truly effective, intelligent design must apply sustainable practices holistically

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DJ Armin, managing partner, ZAS Architects


ustainability in architecture, and the positive and negative environmental impacts that result from the creation new infrastructure, is a vast and complex subject that must be considered from the earliest stages of every project. From project ideation until completion, architects must consider how a project’s sustainability strategy will support economic, social, and environmental conditions. Design solutions must answer all three parts of this sustainability equation equally. One should not prioritise the other but operate in tandem as guiding principles for each and every project on the drawing board. At ZAS, we believe sustainable design equals both a green economy and a preservation of resources. We consider the sustainable value equation for all our designs regardless if a green rating is being sought or not. The question we ask is: can this design be optimised to deliver the right balance between the clients’ environmental, sustainable and cultural priorities? Our mandate is to create world-class architecture which fosters the economy, enhances society, and reduces effects on the environment whenever possible. We approach sustainability by creating strategies that enhance building performance, but not the overall cost. We are continually learning new techniques to achieve both performance and sustainable design benchmarks for architectural, mechanical, electrical, energy, site, storm water management, landscape, indoor

We approach sustainability by creating strategies that enhance building performance, but not the overall cost

air quality, and interior design practices. Creating highly sustainable buildings in Dubai and the MENA region has a unique set of challenges due to severe weather conditions. A sustainable movement is on the rise in the UAE, with awareness and the advancement of sustainable practices in the region growing. Initiatives, strategies, and roadmaps have been introduced and continue to be supported by Dubai government, mainly focused on the implementation of new green building regulations and legislations. The UAE is fast becoming central to the global conversation on sustainability, with the announcement of the Estidama program and Pearl Rating System in Abu Dhabi, and The Sustainable City, Masdar City, Expo2020 – aiming to become the largest sustainable expo event in the world. Many sustainability experts suggest the concept of Biophilia, also known as naturedriven design or the human-nature connection,

is essential to society’s well-being. The positive impacts of biophilic buildings and environments are considered to enhance the quality of life, reduce stress, increase creativity and even promote healing for the users that access to them. Our Dubai office recently unveiled redesigns for a technologically advanced massive 6967sqm approx outdoor rainforest in Dubai. Entwining advanced design, digital technology, and the natural world, the anticipated debut project for Rosemont, a new global hospitality brand, will be first of its kind, urban resort destination for the city of Dubai. Inside Rosemont, a rich rainforest with a sensory rain system creates a 360-degree experience, simulating the sensation of being surrounded by rainfall without actually getting wet. Volumes of stored recycled water create a high humidity level, mimicking the tropical rain forest environment. The advanced system utilises multiple sensors that control the areas where the water is falling when people are detected. Water will be collected and stored from condensation and is constantly recycled. Integrating technology, design and nature, shade and mist sprays from trees create an all-weather atmosphere. Designed in accordance with the green building requirements of the Dubai Municipality, we worked with our client to include sustainable design features where possible. Dubai is an ever-evolving city, which embraces new ideas. Sustainability is now at the forefront of this exploration.

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When ‘fashion stays’ on your mind! Here are the four most stylish hotels to explore during the Milan Fashion Week 2017


on’t settle for less, when the fashion capital of the world, ‘Milan’ has best-looking hotels to offer. Yes, Milan Fashion Week is just round the corner starting from September 20-26, 2017, and there couldn’t be a better time to explore trends on and off the ramp. Milan is home to some great looking hotels depicting culture, history, fashion, and architecture in a way that is most unique. So, if you live, eat, and breathe fashion and a stylish hotel matters to you as much as what you wear, here’s a glimpse of what could be your next glamorous stay.

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Four Seasons Hotel Milano The hotel is located in the fashion district ‘The Quadrilatero della Moda’ just off Via Montenapolone, on a quiet, secluded street called Via Gesù. It is the only hotel in Milan that is so close to more than 100 luxury stores, including Armani, Versace, Alberta Ferretti, Bottega Veneta, Valentino, and Gianfranco Ferrè, and it is also just minutes away from all the major attractions including the iconic Duomo and La Scala. Mauro Governato, general manager at Four Seasons Hotel Milano, shares the history of this property.

Highlights of this property: The hotel focusses on Italian

Star attraction The three pools- one floating pool on the lake, our flowers pool in the garden and the infinity pool of the spa

Grand Hotel Tremezzo This art nouveau palace is located in the heart of Lake Como, with unparalleled views of Bellagio and the stunning Grigne mountains. Valentina De Santis, CEO and the owner of Grand Hotel Tremezzo, share the design aesthetics of this iconic landmark.

Highlights of this property: Architectural masterpieces, antique artwork and period décor furniture.

craftsmanship, such as fortuny fabrics, frette linens, lighting appliances by Salviati-Venini and Carrara marble bathrooms. Four Seasons Hotel Milan has 50 suites, and each one is different, catering to both traditional and modern tastes. Some have frescoes and high ceilings, step-out balconies or direct access to the garden courtyard.

Design inspiration: The building was initially a convent from the 15th century. When Four Seasons began to create the hotel, the construction workers accidentally uncovered original painted frescoes and architectural features, and they’ve all been included in the hotel’s design. The company also discovered the convent’s cloister and columns, which were completely restored, giving us a large outdoor courtyard. Most of our guest rooms overlook this beautiful cloistered garden. The sustainable values: It has always been a great commitment to adapting our historic property to the most up-to-date and efficient energy standards.

Star attraction The courtyard gives our hotel a very quiet, peaceful atmosphere, like a secluded heaven in the middle of the most fashionable and vibrant part of the city

Design inspiration: The hotel draws its inspiration from

art nouveau style stressing upon natural forms and structures, particularly the curved lines of plants and flowers, which emerged between 1890s and the mid 1910s.

The sustainable values: We reduce, reuse, and recycle. We engage both in energy and water conservation efforts. As far as water saving is concerned, we use lake water to irrigate our park and for the cleaning of the hotel. The hotel has also invested in a sophisticated water pump system that allows us to use the deep lake cold water (45°F) for the cooling system of our hotel.

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Star attraction The Radio Rooftop Bar; Radio is a day-to-night, high-energy, rooftop cocktail lounge located on the 10th floor of the hotel

ME Milan Il Duca The hotel is located in a building designed by architect Aldo Rossi, has 132 rooms, including 34 suites, offering a contemporary interior design experience. ME Milan Il Duca lies just 800m from the fashion district and the nightlife of Corso Como. Chiara Della Torre, director of sales at ME Milan Il Duca talks about this lovely place.

Highlights of this property: The floor lamps throughout the hotel by industrial designer, Achille Castiglioni and the fashion pictures by photographer Alberto Van Stokkum. Design

inspiration: The hotel went through the renovations and construction works

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which began in January 2014 and were completed in March 2015. Studio Arassociati was selected for being the continuators of Aldo Rossi legacy and its particular way of understanding architecture. The interior has been totally reconstructed in a contemporary way from the rooms and suites to the public areas. This led to the creation of the panoramic Roof terrace, Radio Rooftop Bar, as well as the historical city beyond.

The sustainable values: Sustainability is a crucial ingredient of Meliá Hotels International’s positioning as a company, actually it’s regarded as the backbone of the business model. The hotel uses LED bulbs in all of the rooms and other spaces.

Star attraction Mandarin Bar & Bistrot proposes a lively atmosphere. Walls are covered with black and white geometric, mosaic patterns, cut by local artisans

Mandarin Oriental, Milan The hotel reflects both Milan’s understated elegance and the city’s creativity and vibrant energy. Mandarin Oriental, Milan is located next to the famous opera house, La Scala and is just three minute walk to Via Montenapoleone and Via della Spiga, city’s most exclusive shopping streets. Luca Finardi, general manager from Mandarin Oriental, talks about the spectacular design of this property.

Highlights of this property: The hotel

features architecturally grand inner courtyards behind its elegant facade.

Design inspiration: Antonio Citterio and Giò Ponti. Inspired by the philosophy of the two Patricia Viel created the stunning design of Mandarin Oriental, Milan. Four elegant 18th century buildings, the hotel was originally built as a luxurious manor house, Palazzo Confalonieri. The building later housed the city’s tax office, Esattoria Civica Milanese, between the 1930s and 1950s, and a bank, Cassa di Risparmio delle Provincie Lombarde, from the 1960s. To reflect the building’s illustrious past, Mandarin Oriental, Milan boasts two ‘Speciality’ suites created as a tribute to two great Masters of design in the 40’s in Italy, Piero Fornasetti

Maestros, Antonio Citterio created an ad hoc design for each suite.

The sustainable values: Mandarin Oriental, Milan has rapidly acted to deploy LED lighting and our goal is to install LED lighting in guestrooms, banquet areas, restaurants, corridors, parking garages and back-of-house areas by 2020. We have been certified by A2A for the work and commitment in helping to support and develop renewable energy. September 2017

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Intelligent lighting control system can dramatically reduce the energy usage. Roma Arora speaks to the industry experts on how this technology is addressing the issue of sustainability and correct lighting at the same time 26 |

September 2017


he world of lighting has transformed over a period of decade and now what matters the most is the concept of right and precise light. The impact of having the correct lighting, optimised for your space and unique requirements can be significant – increasing levels of comfort, productivity, and safety. Nowadays, people are much more finely attuned to the need for lighting to complete a space. Commercial places like malls, hotels, hospitals, and offices are looking for smart solutions in terms of energy saving lights like LEDs along with right illumination experience according to their needs. An office building can save up to 35% of their lighting energy by using lighting control solution to switch off the light rather than depending on human intervention to keep the lights off when not needed.

What are lighting control solutions?

Lighting control systems are used to create scenes from the groups of light fixtures used in the space, allowing for the creation of moods and accents, where a group of fixtures may have a different light output than the other emphasising the visual hierarchy of the lighting elements. Today, lighting controls are highly considered as they assist in creating energy efficient solutions. Regina Santos, associate lighting designer, Godwin Austen Johnson, explains: “The energy efficiency from controls can be achieved in different ways. One energy efficient strategy used with the lighting controls is the use of presence sensors, which can dim scenes or trigger them on or off based on the presence of the occupants. These

Regina Santos, associate lighting designer, Godwin Austen Johnson

sensors are also often connected to the AC in hotel guestrooms to allow for maximum energy savings in energy, controlling the temperature of the AC system when a room is unoccupied or when the guest is away.�

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The lighting control system also delivers convenience and comfort to the building occupants. Mohamed Al Hag, project manager Legrand

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Mohamed Al Hag, project manager, Legrand

“Daylight sensors are also used with the lighting control system to reduce the output of light fixtures close to windows or in spaces with skylights and large glazing and high daylight contribution. Other than the standard use of the lighting control systems indoors, they are also used in exterior lighting schemes for the overall lighting scene to be dimmed down after a certain hour of the night for further energy savings.”

Energy saving is the need of the hour

Lighting control system is used in various areas of a building (like garden, facade, corridors, and meeting rooms or even bathrooms) to control lights automatically as per the actual need required. Mohamed Al Hag, project manager at Legrand elaborates the reason of their popularity. He says: “Lighting control system also delivers convenience and comfort to the building occupants. I believe that one very important purpose which made a lot of people interested in lighting control system is their understanding of the role everyone has to play to reduce global warming. And the responsibility that everyone has to decrease his or her carbon footprints and light pollution to preserve this planet to the next generation.”

The level of advancement

Smartworld, an Etisalat and Dubai South joint venture company, has deployed the Cisco Digital Ceiling framework to create a smart, highly secure, and connected indoor space at its new headquarters in Dubai South. The implementation brings together

Olav Scholte, segment marketing manager, Philips Lighting

an advanced LED connected lighting system from Philips Lighting with Cisco’s secure IT network to enable Smartworld to deliver a more connected, comfortable, and intelligent working environment for both employees and guests. Olav Scholte, segment marketing manager, Philips Lighting, says: “The Cisco Digital Ceiling deployment in Smartworld’s new headquarters will serve people’s dynamic needs in real-time, while also supporting the organisation’s drive for sustainable growth.” “By connecting Smartworld’s building services onto a single converged IP network and monitoring usage data, the Cisco Digital Ceiling delivers multiple benefits that include human-centric environments, optimized workspaces, streamlined maintenance, reduced energy consumption and operating expenses.” Lighting control is becoming a necessity in commercial buildings because of the increased cost of energy waste which increases the building’s operation cost. Al Hag adds: “Along with our group brands like Wattstopper, Legrand, recently, the brand acquired CP Electronics from UK; they are recognised as a specialist and market leader in lighting control systems.”

Popular technologies used in the Middle East

The demand for lighting controls is growing in the hospitality industry too. Scholte further shares, “In the hotel sector, operators are looking at installing our Smart Guest Detection system in both for guest rooms and common areas.

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These systems have multiple functions, which start with welcoming the guest to their room with automatically adjusting light levels. The intuitive interface allows guests to select several pre-set modes in the room based on their activity – from work through to bedtime reading and sleep mode (among other functions). Most recently at Philips Lighting we installed this system into Raffles Hotel, Dubai.” Malls and hotels greatly benefit with the use of a lighting control system, due to their large size in square meters and consequent high-energy loads. “DALI systems are a good solution for malls and hotels as the system can generally flag to the Building Management System (BMS) the failures of light fixtures, pointing to the management of the space which light fixtures need replacement for an optimum maintenance. The Hilton Garden Inn Dubai, Mall of the Emirates is one example of a completed project which uses DALI system in its public areas,” adds Santos. Asai Thambi, director of engineering at Al Raha Beach Hotel, Abu Dhabi says: “Energy saving options are very important for any hotel. We use automation control through BMS and timers based on the sensitivity of the application of lighting control in the public areas.

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Veit Müller, SVP of Zumtobel group MEIA

Asai Thambi, director of engineering at Al Raha Beach Hotel, Abu Dhabi

For rooms, we rely on Guest Room Management System (GRMS) for lighting control solutions.” The lighting industry is undergoing a rapid transformation in the Middle East. Veit Müller, SVP of Zumtobel group MEIA, says: “We focus on well-being enhanced by holistic lighting ecosystems. Latest being Active Light which is is linked to daylight dynamics, actively supporting the natural bio-rhythm and seamlessly ensuring maximum visual comfort. Such human centric lighting solutions bring people together and promote creativity, as they are effortlessly personalised, with the individual always at heart. Active Light solutions use Human Centric Lighting to put the focus firmly on the individual, transforming static, passive entities into dynamic, active spaces.” Müller believes that the focus should be on the need of the client. “For one of our client, ‘Almaz by Momo’, the stylish and contemporary North African

restaurant in Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR), the lighting solution was an integral part of the overall concept. The solution had to provide just the right ambience, helping diners relax, and showcasing the extraordinary range of furniture. Our luminaires couples with lighting controls helped meet these requirements and offer complete flexibility and ensure easy control of the lighting solution throughout the restaurant. “Another project that highlights the lighting control systems in the region is that of Young Athletes at level kids, Dubai, UAE. The lighting concept here relies on outstanding flexibility to enable the adjustment of light levels to suit certain products and displays. The store uses the LITECOM system to dim the lighting solution during quiet periods, which contributes significantly to the overall energy saving.”


CARPETS CC BY CECILIA SETTERDAHL Aiming to do things differently by taking art from where you’d expect to see it to somewhere you wouldn’t think to look. Cecilia Setterdahl’s geometric designs can now adorn your floors as well as your walls. From wall to floor, Cecilia meticulously matches the highest quality New Zealand wool for each design before being hand-knotted into limited edition carpets. Cecilia displays her art and carpets in the Carpets CC showroom located in Dubai Design District - d3. Drop in and visit us, alternatively email or call, to discuss how you can enjoy your very own Cecilia Setterdahl art piece. At the end of the day, life’s too short to live in a dull home, so get into shapes and bold colours! t: +971 4 552 0308 e: w: s: @carpetscc Cecilia Setterdahl FZ LLC Building 6, Entrance A, Suite 106 Dubai Design District (d3), PO Box 333257, Dubai, UAE

Photos by Denise Landerberg



n the GCC, the most accurate barometer of the outdoor furniture market is the performance of the hospitality industry. June 2017 figures from industry monitor STR Global indicate a Middle East pipeline of 160,120 rooms in 583 hotel projects under contract, with 94,748 of these rooms across 300 projects currently under construction.

Upward trend of the hotel sector Spearheading the growth, the upper upscale segment contributes 26,449 projects under construction and 44,650 under contract. Year-on-Year the results demonstrate a 15.6% increase in rooms under construction across the Middle East. The World Travel and Tourism Council placed the industry’s global contribution to GDP at 10.2% in 2016 and, in the UAE, the contribution stands at 12.1% of national GDP, with a 7.4% growth in the number of outlets in the UAE over the same period. Should this pace continue, the UAE is on track to become the fourth fastest growing hotel market globally by 2021, up from 11th place in 2016, with similar patterns replicated across the GCC. Saudi Arabia will absorb a record 68 new hotels comprising 29,033 rooms in 2017, according to data from Top Hotel Projects. The country continues to experience strong growth in religious tourism, although a decline in government spending has altered overall performance for existing properties and could see some budgets reduced. While the pipeline will bring such brands as Rocco Forte to the kingdom for the first time, in Makkah and Medina an estimated 43% and 46% share of the pipeline is for mid-market properties.

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THE DRESSING OF OUTDOOR SPACES The booming hospitality industry in the Middle East is creating new opportunities for outdoor furniture suppliers. Melanie Mingas finds out more about this growing segment

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In Oman, which welcomed three million tourists in 2016, a series of new resorts are currently under development. The Al Nakheel Integrated Tourism Complex will occupy 500,000sqm of waterfront overlooking the Sea of Oman.

Outdoor furniture benefits The above statistics present many opportunities for designers, manufacturers, and suppliers of outdoor furniture, but for the operators it presents tough competition in an already tight market, placing even greater demand on the guest experience and the impact design can have on this. Not only does outdoor furniture need to be functional, it needs to by stylish – and often customisable – durable and, above all, comfortable. In fact, according to research conducted by Infiniti Research Limited, the top considerations for operators specifying new outdoor furniture are: natural, durable, and weather-resistant materials with aesthetic appeal in the outdoor space. With a forecast for above average growth, the

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coming 24 months are set to continue at the same pace, driven by demand from new venues opening across of series mega-projects. Considering the 7.4% growth in the number of outlets in the UAE in 2016, the rush to specify requirements ahead of projected Q1 2018 openings is expected to drive growth in the supply chain in the second half of this year.

Understanding the market In terms of the trends driving the market during this time, nostalgia will swing from soft and floral to early industrial. Echoing the interior craftsmanship and cigar lounge trends of recent months, this will be a cool, sleek take on steel and artisan woods. Elements of this trend splinter into the rustic up-cycled trend. Popularised in tandem with the region’s growing appreciation of farmers’ markets and organic cafes, the next year will see a rise in popularity of this modern farmhouse style. The third trend continues the sleek beech club vibe with classic, high-contrast patterns in fabrics, monochrome metals, and classic hardwoods.

Shane Curran, CEO, Interact Group

Operators continue to lead the specification process and the real world impact of that brings mixed fortunes. With low budgets pricing many suppliers out of the running, the hospitality industry is often advised to allocate more time and money to outdoor furniture specifications in order to secure the best products at the best price. However, for some in the market, the operator’s influence appears to have dwindled, as hospitality consultants take on the task of specifications and project management.

Daniel During, principal and managing director from Dubai-based hospitality consultants-Thomas Klein International (TKI), believes that the entrance of new designers into the hospitality market, where previously specifications were driven by the owners and operators, has complicated not only the market dynamic, but also Return On Investment. He elaborates: “I believe that we are entering a zone now where hospitality consultants will be called upon to drive the design based on brand, market segmentation, and ROI. Good hospitality consultants should have a combined background in branding, operations, finance, architecture, and design expertise in order to achieve these objectives.” Economic factors aside, after years of global recession, cut-price competition from imitation manufacturers and supply chain challenges, the outdoor furniture market appears to be entering a new era of growth.

Styles for outdoor spaces Echoing the results, Shane Curran, CEO at Interact Group, says: “This year’s trend is focused more on the use of natural elements with a twist of vintage and contemporary design. Most al fresco themed outlets are using furniture with cool palettes and patterned cushions. Woven furniture made from natural palms such as rattan are popular this year and the use of mild colours as painting or layering on the wooden pieces is also I believe that we trending.” are entering a zone now “Most media close up designs are and recognisable where hospitality consultants gene r a l l y in the post. leaning For those will be called upon to drive the towards who don’t want design based on brand, market the use to go with the of natural flow, bespoke segmentation and ROI. design in and handcrafted - Daniel During, principal and retro style. items provide an managing director, TKI Last year, sleek opportunity for urban inspired hotels, restaurants, furniture designs beach clubs, and other which gave a classic look venues to extend their brand with the use of zesty colours identity to the great outdoors. were preferable,” he continues. Curran says: “Craftsmanship is very The ability for design to meet brand standards valuable for stakeholders in regard to outdoor also features high on the list, as identity and furniture. This is because it encourages creativity differentiation become key to a venue’s positioning and innovation in the industry. A client’s appreciation in the market – and its success with customers. for quality serves is motivation to meet and exceed Much like the food guests enjoy, outdoor spaces need expectations. It influences the materials used in the to be picture-perfect at all times, ready for the social project, creativity and style.”

Daniel During, principal and managing director, TKI

Maintenance of outdoor furniture Firstly, through proper maintenance regularly by washing and cleaning them to rid them of dust and decay. Outdoor furniture should also be kept away from unfavourable weather conditions to enhance their longevity. The use of paints, wax, and repellents on outdoor furniture also prevents damages. It is also important to store them in a safe place to prevent theft. Old outdoor furniture can be refreshed by painting them to create a new design. Cushion covers can also be changed to a new colour matching the season to give it a new appearance.

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Nothing beats the power of passion and enthusiasm for Hazem Al Zaro, principal, Zaro Architects as he talks about his promising projects, design trends and what’s in store for future



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What are the current projects the firm is working on in the UAE and abroad? As we are a multi-disciplinary type of studio, we provide the full suite of contemporary architecture, and interior design solutions and services, working with clients ranging from F&B outlets through to healthcare and residential properties up to master planning. We’re currently working on a number projects varying from resorts, hotels, residential, and, commercial developments. At present, we’ve noticed a huge need for waterfront developments, and are currently designing two – including a seven-star honeymoon destination, located directly on the sea-front with bungalows, cabanas and a stunning view; as well as a beach project consisting of two hotels and 300 villas. Although most of our work is based across the UAE, Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries, we’ve been commissioned for a few projects in India, Czech Republic, Austria and Guinea Bissau, which is very exciting. How was 2016 for the company? Have you seen any effect because of the current economic climate? 2016 was a great year for us. It involved a lot of hard work and many long nights on the implementation of our expansion plan and launching our studio in Dubai, but it was worth it! Yes, the economic climate has had an effect on the market, but we are fortunate that it hasn’t been detrimental to our business. We focus on building strong relationships with our clients, and it definitely helps that we provide a wide spectrum of services. We’re also aware of how important it’s to keep abreast of our industry issues. We try to participate in industry events as much as possible and are always keeping an eye on emerging trends.

What trends have you observed in the regional architecture and interior design market? In this industry, there is a constant stream of new and upcoming trends, but we believe in contemporary architecture – the architecture that serves the current era. Popular and modern styles today will look classic in the future, and the wheel turning. Innovation is our key to stay up to date, and our team fully believes that design is based on proposing new, creative ideas. Our role is to integrate innovation and creativity, and that’s definitely accompanied by research, along with functionality and practicality. Our vision is based on this integration with the factor of flexibility - we don’t just design spaces, we design spaces for people to inhabit. In other words, we design people’s movement and behavior. Having said that, we like to put an umbrella of simplicity above all of our ideas. What kind of response have you received from your new office in Dubai Design District (d3)? Dubai Design District itself is an inspirational zone. It’s undoubtedly “a home for creativity”. It’s a

place where designers - people from the same field but different backgrounds – come together and the result is that innovation reaches its peak. The creation of an ongoing development like d3 shows that the industry here is progressing, and to companies like ours, it attracts exceptional, talented people from around the world. We’ve been participating in Dubai Design District for around eight months now, and in that time ten big events have taken place, and we’ve taken part in three of them. It’s a lively area with a really positive vibe, which makes it the perfect environment for designers to work. Do you plan to open any more offices in the region? We definitely have a real ambition for expansion, and would like to extend our presence into other markets in the future. Right now, however, we are focusing on building our Dubai studio, as well as maintaining the Cairo studio. From our two offices, we are targeting Egypt, the Gulf, North Africa, Europe, and India and it’s going very well so far. It’s exciting to see what projects are coming up, and how we can handle a much wider range with the new studio.

What are the new projects in pipeline for Zaro? We’ve recently received a number of exciting requests for a broad range of developments. Two hotel developers to design the interior of their projects have approached us, and we’ve also received a request from a hospital in Abu Dhabi. We recently signed a collaboration between Zaro Architects and the Al Jalila culture center for children, where we will work closely with the children to codesign installations, products, and landmarks that will take place in Dubai’s cultural hubs and hopefully some public areas as well. This is a really worthwhile project and one that the team feels very passionate about. Additionally, we were commissioned a series of resorts in the Red Sea, Egypt that are really interesting in their ideas, locations, relationship to waterfront and other exciting characteristics. We can’t wait to see these projects born.

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The other side of

smart While smart is associated with the latest innovations, when it comes to design the smartest ideas come from nature. Melanie Mingas explores the game changing revolution

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n the years leading to the digital revolution, design brought the future into the present. Polished metallics, multi-functional furniture and the arrival of high-tech media to daily life, brought a taste of tomorrow to homes, offices and public spaces. Yet, as the digital revolution evolves into an era of connection, design trends have taken a nostalgic view with a twist of biophilia, as awareness of the symbiosis of nature and wellness grows. The Edge is the smartest building in the world. Located in Amsterdam, this building is one of the most high-tech spaces to ever be constructed – it is also the world’s most sustainable office building and holds BREEAM new build outstanding status, the highest certification ever awarded to an office. But while the lights and doors are sensorscontrolled – the building features more than 28,000 sensors – the design itself uses space and light to bring the outside environment in. The Edge adheres to wellness principles while using smart devices to

innovate – and monitor – how occupants interact with their space and each other. The innovations range from run of the mill Smart lighting to a Light over Ethernet (LoE) LED system, but the wow factor lies in the Smart applications. Coffee machines can recognise individuals on approach and dispense the blends and add-ins they desire. Workspaces are assigned on a daily basis to fit user preferences. And for those who do not cycle to work, a high-tech garage identifies vehicles, directs them to available parking and uses sensor-equipped LED lights to brighten and dim the path for drivers. A statement from developer OVG Real Estate, reads: “An environment such as The Edge leads to lower energy and maintenance costs, reduced sickness leave and higher productivity, which ultimately achieves a much better financial performance. Thanks to the BREEAM criteria the use of construction materials and costs per square metre was significantly reduced.”

Alan McDonald, managing director, MENA, Humanscale

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Smart technology is allowing people to work beyond the traditional desk. - Alan McDonald

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OfficeIQ features

Edge is the greenest and the most intelligent building in the world

Ergonomic furniture for The Edge was designed and manufactured by Humanscale. MENA region managing director, Alan McDonald, explains: “What’s great about connected spaces is that technology is actually giving us feedback on the impact interior design trends, such as healthy and sustainable design, have on employees. Biophilia is a key design trend. We know that humans feel better surrounded by plants but having data that actually measures the health impact of this – by monitoring air quality, for example – makes this all the more tangible.”

Heathy and sustainable design

Biophilia as a design trend is rooted in ancient cultures. Practiced in tropical Asia, for thousands of years people have intuitively brought the lush greenery that surrounds their dwellings inside, using plants, fresh water sources and in some Japanese cultures even carp, to keep spaces cool, clean and healthy. While historically biophilia is about the intuitive integration of natural and living space, the difference today is that the effects on health – as well as how space is used – can be

monitored. From the Fitbit tracking activity and exertion to the CubeSensor keeping a digital eye on air quality, light, temperature and humidity, there are now dozens of ways to discretely ensure every environment, activity, and meal supports optimal health. Transferring some of these principles to a new tool for tracking health and environment, Humanscale’s OfficeIQ acts as a Fitbit for the office to record movement and encourage activity to help boost energy, focus and mood. McDonald explains: “Using OfficeIQ allows a person to see how often they alternate between sitting and standing, which helps reduce sedentary behaviour, and personal alerts can be added to ensure increased activity. Organisations can receive anonymous reports, which will demonstrate utilisation and occupancy of areas, ultimately leading to wiser real estate decisions. While we have always focused on this aspect of product design, making ergonomic work tools that adapt to the user and not the other way around, it is in response to this exact increasing need that we developed OfficeIQ.”

• -Measures health and wellness information such as caloric expenditure and gives real-time feedback • -Multiple PIR (passive infrared) sensors ensure accurate data at occupied stations while ultrasonic sensors detect height changes • -Uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) sensors and wireless connectivity • -Users can move freely in the workspace and link to any available OfficeIQ sensor • -OfficeIQ is an unobtrusive, lightweight box that sits on or under the desk area

The role of Smart

Smart devices have received a cautious welcome to modern life due to reservations about security and privacy, but as their benefits to human health is realised, they will no doubt enjoy a new lease of popularity. The kitchen will soon feature IoT technology to streamline grocery shopping, as well as manage security and environmental controls. McDonald says: “Smart technology is allowing people to work beyond the traditional desk. There is no doubt that we are moving towards the intelligent office and the design matters because it is important for smart appliances to benefit both the employer and the employee. Smart appliances will play a larger role in our day-to-day lives going forward, so it is important that they create positive experiences for the user and this is something that can be seen in the rise of the connected workspace.” While the expectation 10 years ago was for the future to be silver – or variations of – the reality falls more toward the green end of the spectrum. Smart devices support greater awareness of the design trends most beneficial to occupant health and productivity, but it is the environment-centred design trends, rather than the devices, that currently take the lead on the drawing board.

OfficeiQ is the ultimate office intelligence

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The Dragon Bar at Katsuya


ot every design pleases everybody. Not every restaurant menu pleases everybody. But hold on, there’s one place that will please everyone’s design and taste senses - Katsuya by Starck is just few months old in the Dubai circuit and is already a winner. This waterfront Japanese restaurant, overlooking the Arabian Sea, is located at Jumeirah Al Naseem Hotel, Madinat Jumeirah. Katsuya’s dynamic amalgamation of the French designer, Philippe Starck, and sushi chef, Katsuya Uechi,

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is truly stylish and savory, both at the same time. Design wise, this place is a treat for the ardent fans of Philippe Starck - simple and elegant. As you enter the restaurant area, the walls are adorned with oversized backlit photographs of a Japanese geisha to create a dramatic effect. The restaurant features a sushi bar, which is the part of the main dining area with beautiful wooden ceiling setting. There’s also a lounge area decked up with white tables and Starck’s signature sleek chairs. The Japanese paper lights hanging from the ceiling gives a warm and

inviting feel to this area. Another interesting area of Katsuya is the dragon bar; it is called so because a huge dragon tattoo image is used to decorate one of the walls, which is a major highlight of this room. Talking about the Katsuya’s design aesthetics, Starck feels: “I am not interested in design, only people interest me. That is why naturally my favourite aspect of design or architecture is to try to understand how I can help people to have a better life. And sometimes, if I am lucky, I succeed. Katsuya is a place where people can feel happier,

THE MINIMALIST GLAMOUR! When the French design aesthetics blend seamlessly with the Japanese gastronomy culture

Katsuya is a place where people can feel happier, more intelligent, more in love. -Philippe Starck, designer

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The lounge area

more intelligent, more in love. Katsuya is perfection, because it is a hybrid between East and West, which offers the best of both worlds. It is a stage where I hope people will feel more alive, more sparkling, and more at their best.” One can also check out the alfresco seating arrangement adjacent to the one-of-a-kind turtle lagoon. From here, you can also experience the stunning sea views of the Burj Al Arab. To put it short, Katsuya by Starck is a visual treat for sophisticated design enthusiasts and a feast delight as well. The views from your window will be breathtaking, for sure!

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The Exotic Menu The menu includes crispy rice with spicy tuna, yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno, wagyu filet with foie gras. Don’t forget to get your hands on the famous Philippe Starck 2009 Champagne. The cocktail lovers can order burning mandarin that is part spicy part sweet, or the watermelon cucumber mojito-favourites here. Sushi bar

The Middle East’s premier Exhibition, Conference & Awards for Lighting Design and Technology

17 – 19 October, 2017 Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Experience innovative products and solutions along with enlightening insights shaping the lighting industry right now. Pre-register to visit


In the lap of nature

How can you have a tropical forest in the desert? We can; The Green Planet in Dubai is a perfect example of a recreational bio-dome, featuring over 3,000 plants and animals. Brad McTavish, head architect of The Green Planet shares every aspect of design and the science behind this architectural wonder 46 |

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Brad McTavish, head architect of The Green Planet


ocated at the City Walk, the inspiration for The Green Planet and hence the architecture was based on our client’s desire to create a centre that would educate and inspire the youth of Dubai and act as a catalyst to help reserve our planet’s natural ecosystem. Based on these goals, we at Grout McTavish Architects during our early design studies, were inspired by the kapok tree and how these are the sentinels of the rainforest and how they tell the story of the rainforest ecosystem. The tree, at 25m tall, is the largest manmade, life-sustaining tree in the world, housing over 35 species of epiphytes and plants within its branches. Amongst the plants we have introduced the strangler fig species with the intention that over time, the strangler figs will overtake the host, manmade tree to become a strangler tree. In order to allow for this natural evolution, we developed a highly complex structural tree comprising a series of box section trusses anchored to a tripod designed vertical support structure. The end result made for a simplified fabrication process, which allowed for the structural tree to be erected early on in the construction process and the building being built around it. The construction mimicked the concept for The Green Planet. A building where the architecture was developed around the kapok tree being the heart of the experience and the building shrouds and protects it as it reaches higher in the air.

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Connected to the artificial tree, the indoor waterfall uses recycled water

The glass effect

One interesting fact we quickly discovered was the need to sustain a myriad of plants that would be needed to provide the food source for many of the species. We had to create a real ecosystem. In fact, we had to allow 100% UV light penetration in certain areas of the biome. This in a desert setting is unheard of. This lead to us designing an advanced cable supported a glazing system that was developed using industry partners to suit the specific needs of the project. One key element was the requirement that the support structure had to be thin and as transparent as possible yet allow for a wide fluctuation of thermal expansion based on the temperature extremes of the region. The resulting design utilises a tensioned cable system using springs to dampen the expansion of the glass drum. This allows for a lighter structural system that does not block the solar gain we needed and creates a more transparent volume.

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Suspension bridge for the up-close view

The suspension bridge was a muchneeded pathway to and from the tree. It allows for an up-close view of the tree while letting guests get a sense of the real bridges researchers use within the forest to observe the species. It’s bouncy, narrow and located high above the forest floorgiving guest a real-life perspective and dangers in the forest.

The interesting spiral staircase

The stair is narrow and constricted to give guest a sense of the interesting journey they can take through the biome to get a better perspective of the space. We were inspired by strangler figs and how they curl and encase the tree. Our manmade stair reflects nature’s geometry while giving the guest a fun, interesting, and treacherous journey through the forest.

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The economics of design

I always describe the building as a jewel– like cylinder shielded and protected by a fragile enclosure that contains a living machine that is able to sustain life within the desert. The building is inspired by two architectural metaphors found throughout history - the cube and the circle. The two were conceptually seen as codependent on each other for this project and therefore the architecture was developed around the earth inspired circle within containing a tropical garden that is protected by a fragile origami cube representing the weak nature of our permanence on earth. The resulting tension between the weak Fujimoto origami cube and the precious rainforest creates a dialogue about our need to protect the fragile nature of our planets ecosystem. The perforated and dissected cube houses the environmental ideal within, shrouded and exposed to the outside that offers the passerby that a glimpse of a world we all need to protect for our mutual survival.

The curious case of the cage

We wanted people to have a sense of discovery and wonder when approaching the lush forest floor. The caves and pathways form the storyline for the visitor that allows them to find for themselves the wonders of nature. This element along with the other unique features of the biome speaks of Green Planets key mandate and our task was to faithfully recreate the fauna environment and species that inhabit the equatorial rainforest of the world in order to educate and inspire our guests on a journey to a part of the globe that is absolutely critical to the planets survival.

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Caring for your curtains! Curtains transcend the functional role of blocking sunlight. They complement a home’s interior décor theme and become the most visible accessory of the space. While an elegant curtain flaunts a well-conceived home design, it is also exposed to dust that is visible to everyone. The same beautiful curtains can turn into an eyesore if they are not maintained well. Here are a few quick tips from Mei Al Hakim, interior designer, IDdesign, on maintaining curtains of various fabrics.


Clean the curtains periodically Use a vacuum cleaner set on a moderate power mode to clean curtains once a week, or at least once in a month. The surface of curtains can be a breeding ground for dust, and cleaning it on time becomes more important with children at home.


Dry cleaning method for heavy fabrics Using liquid detergents to clean a heavy fabric curtain can be counter productive. They are prone to shrinking and take a long time to dry. Exposing it to the harsh UAE summer to hasten the drying process can also damage the fabric. Hence, you are better off handing it to a trusted Laundromat strictly for dry cleaning only.


Use special detergents for delicate fabrics Sheer and delicate fabrics can be gently hand-washed under your watchful gaze. However, regular detergents used for clothing fabrics may not be the right match for curtains. There are special cleaning solutions for this task. Also, if you bought a curtain lured by its scintillating colour, then you should take precautions to not allow the luster to fade away. Attach a lining or blackout layer to the curtain fabric to protect it from the bright sunlight.

Mei Al Hakim, interior designer, IDdesign


Use a strong curtain rail A heavy-duty curtain rail or rod becomes imperative when you use thick-fabric curtains. When choosing a rail, also factor in the prospect of attaching an extra blackout layer so it can withstand the weight.


Read what the manufacturer says The manufacturer’s notes contain important details about the product, including dos and don’ts for maintaining it. Read the labels and notes carefully when installing, washing and cleaning the curtains.

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Gold and beautiful This stunning golden pineapple show piece is an ideal object of affection. Truly, a great choice for a contemporary living space. Availability:

HOME SWEET HOME For a house that exudes warmth, elegance, style, and just happy vibes

Raise the bar Simple yet striking, this bar stool is effortlessly stylish. Simple to clean with damp cloth, the stool is a musthave accessory for your bar or even kitchen area. Availability: Across all Al-Futtaim ACE stores in the UAE

Leading all the way The agility gold leopard statute conveys the message of prowess and power. Availability: Marina Home, Mall of the Emirates

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Down to earth From the Perennial Collection by Australia’s Armadillo & Co., these rugs are 100% handmade out of sustainable and natural fibres. Availability: Tribe, The Courtyard, Al Quoz

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Life is a bubble An assortment of lights in various spherical silhouettes, the Nelson Bubble Lamps add a touch of softness and luminosity to interiors. Availability: Herman Miller, Marina Plaza, Dubai

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Subdued luxury Papadatos’ exquisite collection of sofas offer a balance of simplicity and an unmatched level of comfort. It makes for a perfect addition to your living room or the entertainment area at home. Availability: Chattels & More, Oud Metha, Umm Hurair Road

Two is company! The Clio chair (left) defines sophistication and strikes an aesthetic balance between understated design, fine craft, and comfort. Frida (Right) is a chair with a warm and inviting embrace, a solid structure provides support and stability. Availability: Natuzzi, Sheikh Zayed Road

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The hot seat Mimi with arm is a classic flared shape dining chair by Timothy Oulton in faded and degraded velvet. A delightful by addition for your house. Availability: Marina Home, Al Barsha 2, Umm Sequim Road

Cheery and bright There’s something nice about these pretty cushions. Just throw them on any dull setting, and see the place coming alive. Availability: IKEA, Dubai Festival City

Revisiting the good old days Smeg’s stand mixer is available in the stylish 50’s retro look and smart pastel colors. Its die-cast aluminum body, zinc-alloy base and stainless steel lever make it a perfect fit in a stylish kitchen. Availability: Better Life, Mall of the Emirates, Dubai

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2017 10–12 OCTOBER










UKCONSTRUCTIONWEEK.COM Includes access to these events:







IN LOVE WITH CALLIGRAPHY! For those who put their heart and soul while buying that perfect gift, this one is for you. How about a bespoke present shows a little extra thought? Taking the idea of customisation to a different level, Dubai-based design house, Silsal, offers an unrivalled customisation service for their bespoke boxes. A chic yet practical solution for storing keepsakes, jewellery or bonbons, the acrylic boxes can be totally personalised, from the size to the message – choose initials, a name or a phrase to monogram the box with. From cheerful yellow to dusty pink, you can also select the colour of calligraphy from an assortment of hues. Availability: Price: Starting from AED324

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September 2017



THE HOME OF REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT Restatex Cityscape Riyadh is the largest and most influential real estate investment and development event in the Kingdom. Bringing together investors, developers, government officials and real estate professionals, there is no better place to find investment opportunities and new business partners.

REGISTER ONLINE FOR FREE +966558274863 Regional TV News Partner


27-30 SEPTEMBER 2017 Riyadh International Convention & Exhibition Center

 Research Partner

 Organiser

International Partner



Trade fair dates for your diary…

EVENT IN FOCUS Paris Design Week September 8-16, 2017 Paris, France

This is a citywide design fair (an extension of the Maison & Objet trade fair) showcasing the best of home décor, fashion, art, food, and craft. Comprising nearly 180 venues, including museums, concept stores, and hotels, the week-long design feast is free of charge, inviting the public to discover the year’s newest collections and prototypes. This year, an exhibition titled The Now! Le Off will bring to light over 100 new design talents and emerging brands. Unique exhibitors will have the chance to win a series of prizes by Rado.

Cityscape Global

London Design Festival

September 11-13, 2017 Dubai, UAE Cityscape Global 2017 is a real estate investment and development event for emerging markets globally. Attendees will be able to liaise with industry peers, find new opportunities, and see how the industry is moving forward in tandem with regulations and best practices. Exhibition participants will develop their skills through industry sessions, and gain further insight at talks where experts will share information on market trends and investment.

September 16-24, 2017 London, UK The annual festival has been showcasing the work of designers, architects, artists and retailers since 2003. Now in its 15th year, it will bear witness to hundreds of large-scale installations, exhibitions, and events pop up in many unique spaces across London, from world-famous museums to small local studios. Special highlights include a “building block castle” by Camille Walala and an undulating tapestry by Ross Lovegrove— just two among the 400 events prepped to take place during the festival.

Furniture China

BOLD Summit

September 12-15, 2017 Shanghai, China The China International Furniture Expo, better known as Furniture China, is one of the world’s leading B2B trade fairs, catering to over 100,000 participants every year. At a venue sprawling over an area of nearly 240,000 sqm, exhibitors will demonstrate their latest solutions in the fields of design, interiors, and furniture manufacturing. High-quality suppliers will present home, office and outdoor products such as furniture, mattresses, upholstery components, leather, and textile.

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September 2017

September 25-27, 2017 Chicago, USA Business of Luxury Design (BOLD) Summit is a biennial event, crafted specifically for design industry business owners looking to raise their businesses to the next level. Eminent design personalities like Leslie Carothers, Barclay Butera, Pamela Babey, and Jamie Drake will be amongst those presenting. The event will feature workshops, round table discussions, and presentations on topics such as public relations, creating a revenue stream with product lines, online marketing strategies, building referral networks, mastering profit margins and much more.

Grayscale Interiors, with a portfolio of practical fit-out experience and applied theoretical knowledge, has helped clients realize the most complex of projects within budgets and expected timelines T +971 4 456 4440 F +971 4 456 4230 Level 17, Suite 08, Al Ameri Tower, Barsha Heights, Dubai, UAE PO Box 74965

Materials that inspire ideas. Shapes and hues designed to freely express your style. Unique and inspiring products with unlimited choice. RAK Ceramics gives you limitless imagination.




PAV. 14 STAND B31 C32 PAV. 30 STAND D42 E41

Design Middle East September 2017  

Region's leading design magazine! This issue highlights the art installations at d3, feature on lighting control systems and pictorial deli...

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