Design Middle East Jan-Feb 2022 edition

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design-middleeast .com



Interiors and architecture from the Gulf, Levant and beyond


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The fresh year brings new expectations, and designers are rethinking trends to create even more opportunities for innovation and experimentation. What could be the driving elements this year for planned projects across the region, from F&B, healthcare, and education building designs, to raw materials, lighting, paints, technology, and more?


OP-ED Design with Purpose 'Design & build' encompasses more than just convenience, functionality, and efficiency. According to Baha Hamadi, Co-founder & CMO of TXM Innovations, each design must have a valid purpose.

INTERVIEW Technology As the Way Forward Dimitri Papakonstantinou, managing director of Al Shafar Interiors (ASI), discusses working on Expo 2020 projects and how the company can benefit in the future from this mega event.

10 favourite design pieces, which she admires for their craftsmanship, aesthetic, and functionality.



Aloki Batra, CEO of FIVE, spoke with Design Middle East about the appeal of Soul Street, its design aesthetics, and the hotel's future plans.

PROJECT Raw & Ravishing! Designer Tamilla Jazayeri, founder of the UAE-based practise TAM Studio, shows us her latest residential project in Jumeirah Island, Dubai, which emphasises raw architectural aspects while utilising the abundance of natural light. 44

SUSTAINABILITY Reducing Global Carbon Emissions

REVIEW A Feast for the Eyes and the Soul


DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Delivering a Digital Future Kerem Cengiz, managing director of LWK + PARTNERS, discusses how digital solutions are drastically altering operational practices and accelerating project delivery. 58


Embodied carbon and the construction industry’s role in reducing global carbon emissions

DÉCOR REVIEW Luxury as you have never seen it before

BRAND BUILDING Driven by Passion


The Palazzo Versace Dubai is the epitome of sophistication, opulence, and grandeur. accelerating project delivery.

GLAZE Granite & Marble CEO Umesh Punia discusses his entrepreneurial journey, the brand's unique offerings, and exciting future plans 34

PRODUCT DESIGN Objects of Desire Nada Debs, an award-winning Lebanese designer, shares her top

TÊTE-À-TÊTE Uplift & Build Khadije Hamad, associate architect at Aedas and winner of the Young Talent of the Year at the Design Middle East Awards 2021, on how women need to mentor, encourage, and uplift one another, her aspirations, and technical breakthroughs in design.






SUPPLIER FOCUS Functional We're still in the grip of a pandemic, and working from home appears to be here to stay. Here are some of the most stylish and functional tables and bookcases for you…










Editor's note





he New Year brings with it new ideas, vibes, and opportunities, which is what the entire Design Middle East team wishes for everyone. We would like to greet all of our readers and loyal patrons with a very Happy New Year. We are pleased to introduce the combined edition of January-February 2022, which focusses on the new exciting things that we can do in the future. The cover story features the perspectives of the region's finest designers who're studying various trends while keeping in mind clients' shifting demands in the face of the pandemic, sustainability, wellness, constrained budgets, immersive experiences, and technology advancements such as Metaverse and NFT in mind. It's a great read! Moving on, there are exciting reads in the pipeline featuring leaders from various fields of design such as Kerem Cengiz from LWK + PARTNERS, who discusses the digital future; GLAZE Granite & Marble CEO Umesh Punia, who talks about his entrepreneurial journey; Dimitri Papakonstantinou of Al Shafar Interiors (ASI), as he discusses working on Expo 2020 projects; and young talent Khadije Hamad from Aedas, who discusses how women need to mentor, encourage, and uplift one another. We explored the magnificent Palazzo Versace Dubai and why it is regarded as the pinnacle of refinement, richness, and grandeur. It's difficult to express its actual beauty until you arrive and see it for yourself. It's a neoclassical masterpiece that mixes well with Arabian architectural elements In addition, we went on a tour of Soul Street at FIVE Jumeirah Village, and the designs are unique and fun. This restaurant is more than


simply delicious street food; the street art by international artists and the exciting music by live performers make it one of Dubai's most Instagrammable spots. The project of the month is by designer Tamilla Jazayeri, founder of the UAE-based firm TAM Studio; her latest residential project in Jumeirah Island emphasises raw architectural elements while maximising natural light. If you're wondering what our pick for this month is, it's Klekktic's Pierre Chair, which has a gorgeous wood frame that provides not only a strong foundation but also a terrific sense of warmth. Happy Reading! Roma Arora Editor +966 50 328 9818 EDITOR ROMA ARORA CREATIVE LEAD ODETTE KAHWAGI ART DIRECTOR SIMONA EL KHOURY MARKETING EXECUTIVE AARON JOSHUA DIGITAL MEDIA PRODUCER ALEXANDER BUNGAS

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10 News




SPACE delivers exciting PAPA Dubai project, an exciting 1,580sqm entertainment destination in the vibrant Atrium complex, the dining and entertainment epicentre of riverside Al Habtoor



4SPACE introduces PAPA Bar in Dubai, which includes nine exciting concepts

City. Comfort and soul food are at the heart of the dining experience that takes visitors from evening to the early hours. World-respected bartending figures from Dubai and Moscow partnered with 4SPACE to create nine glorious bars and mixology concepts like no other. The Dubai-based design firm partnered with the world’s finest

Each bar has its own distinctive vibe and personality and transforms daily from a chic restaurant where you can dine in style as the evening draws to a close. As nighttime falls over the city, the restaurant becomes an elegant party venue and after club-bar.

mixologists from Dubai and Moscow to create an exclusive transformational venue. The venue seamlessly shifts from a sophisticated and immersive dining experience to a chic after-party venue with DJs and entertainment as the evening moves to night. The total space is made up of little ‘boulevards’ including the Rum Station, Champagne Avenue, Gin Point and Vodka Lane, Tequila Road, Sake Alley, Whiskey Square and the VIP Lounge. It’s got a cohesive village feel, with archways in different finishings used throughout the expansive space to allow a unified design between each of the bars. The monochromatic colour approach allows a seamless transition between each distinctive bar. As the tempo picks up, the lighting transforms. 4SPACE designers seamlessly integrated the architectural and entertainment lighting with five distinctive ambient moods based on the time of day and desired experience.

12 News




dwp announces new design directors for the Dubai studio


wp | design worldwide partnership has grown its market presence through its global studios, with exponential growth in the Middle East over the last 12 months. In support of this, it resulted in the relocation of dwp’s regional managing director, Asia & ME, Charlie Kelly, to Dubai in the second quarter of 2021. dwp has recognised the Middle East region as an expanding market with dwp offering a competitive edge, delivering state-ofthe-art projects, setting benchmarks in sectors

including hospitality, commercial, and residential. dwp designed W Hotels The Palm and Abu Dhabi – Yas Island both received awards for exceptional interior design and the Dubai Smart office was awarded for innovative workplace design. The dwp Dubai Studio is now delighted to announce promotions and new additions to the team. “In an effort to continue to deliver landmark projects it is essential to strategically grow from within through leadership promotions as well as adding new staff. It was important for us at dwp to grow our team with people that are not

only skilled in their field of work but have a deep knowledge of the ME market and also align with the dwp ethos of ‘design for a better world’. Our aim is to continuously design cutting edge projects with sustainability in mind,” says Kelly. Adriana Graur, who joined dwp in 2019, is promoted to design director. Graur has the unique ability to understand the client needs and deliver designs that exceed expectations through research and enquiry. To add strength, energy and vitality dwp also is delighted to announce new senior staff appointments,

dwp drew inspiration for the W Dubai-The Palm from the Middle East's iconic features.

Kanika Puri and Tala Melek. Puri is appointed as design director, and she has over 18 years of extensive experience as an interior designer across various sectors predominantly in hospitality and F&B design, but also across residential, workplace, and retail. Melek has joined as the business development director. She is a qualified British Architectural Engineer, having studied at Westminster University in London.



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14 News

Preciosa Lighting creates a stunning lighting installation at Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 1





hangi Airport partnered with Preciosa Lighting to create a lighting installation for a newly refurbished area at Terminal 1 Departure/ Transit Hall.

Sculptural light garden The Preciosa team knew the installation had to be something outstanding. The lighting should have a strong narrative, rooted in the tropical garden theme characteristic of the airport interiors and all of Singapore. Garden Metamorphosis is a sculpture that blends in unique compositions, exploring the shapes and patterns of nature. It captures every moment of a garden’s never-ending transformation. The installation is organic and fluid, featuring abstract shapes to trigger visitors’ fantasies. Preciosa Lighting designer Anna Kralova was the lead designer on the project. “This is the transformation that nature naturally undergoes,” Kralova said. “Here, these leaves turn into butterflies which visually blend with the leaves. Just like in nature – when a butterfly sits on a flower or a leaf, it completely merges with it.” A bright touch of light The installation is more than ten metres long and 9 metres wide. There are more than 650 handblown crystal components including small and big butterflies and small and big single and double leaves. Each component is original and handcrafted at the Preciosa factory in the Czech Republic. The metal base is champagne and polished brass for a warm feel. Component colours include clear crystal, frosted crystal, champagne, light pink, pink, and light and dark lustre.

The architecture and interior design was led by RSP Architects Planners & Engineers, Singapore. Preciosa Lighting worked with the main contractor, Takenaka Corporation, Singapore.


Stephen Taylor takes over as the new MD of KPS UAE


that is also highly appealing to many of KPS’ customers. Taylor continued: “At KPS we always take the time to understand our clients and their business, and work alongside them collaboratively to bring their goals to life.” These lifelong friendships, as KPS calls them, have not only fuelled the company’s spectacular growth over the years but have also ensured an unusually high share of repeat business. In many cases today KPS is refitting spaces that it first created for the same corporate clients ten, or even fifteen years ago.: KPS continues to expand, both in terms of its UAE footprint and its international network of offices. Founded in Dubai in 1992, the company now has a presence in nine countries across Europe and the Middle East. This network structure is ideal for clients with a



tephen Taylor has relinquished his role as operations director and has taken over in the driving seat as KPS’ new managing director for the UAE. KPS is a technology-led and design-focussed interior contractor. Stephen Taylor and Stephen Lockey are both managers at KPS in the UAE and have worked together closely over many years: Stephen Lockey as managing director and Stephen Taylor as operations director. Stephen Lockey has stepped down from his leadership role and has left the company after more than 17 years. Taylor said: “At the start of last year, both Stephen Lockey and I set out to ensure that every single detail of this transition was thought through and that we would have no loose ends; we both wanted to ensure the KPS ship stays firmly on course for success in the years ahead.” It’s this kind of Scandinavian-style, no surprises approach the interior construction business


multinational presence, and in many cases KPS has been responsible for delivering multiple projects for the same client across international markets, allowing professional knowledge sharing within KPS to generate efficiencies that can be passed back in time and cost savings.

TOP Stephen Taylor, KPS UAE operations director, becomes the company's MD from 2022

BOTTOM KPS reopened its commercial furniture showroom in Dubai Design District (d3) with a new look.




16 OP-ED

Design with


TOP Baha Hamadi is a board member of the Public Relations & Communications Association (PRCA) and a member of the World Economic Forum’s community of ESG practitioners.



nterior design firms are increasingly realising the value of instilling purpose into their work. That is, the technical goal is to perfect the user journey, improve functionality, increase efficiency, and provide convenience. However, how frequently do we see architects and designers considering the social and environmental impact of their work? The issue is two-fold. The purpose is not being embedded as an intrinsic part of business models from inception, and the potential social and environmental contribution is often seen as minimal to the point it will go unnoticed. Unlike an interior design firm with a separate CSR programme, doing business responsibly or having

an intrinsic CSR component inside the business model is measured by the amount to which the business's operations have a social and environmental impact by default. Companies with organically motivated CSR initiatives care, and as a result, they are viewed as better corporate citizens. There are many ways the ‘design and build’ community can contribute to environmental preservation. One way is to adopt sustainability measures using environmentally friendly materials and equipment in design and fit-out works. For example, LED bulbs save over 75% energy as compared to traditional bulbs. LED lights also last longer, operate under cold temperatures, generate no heat or UV emissions, boast a better design, light instantly when switched on, withstand frequent switching, and operate using low voltage.


This image depicts the Saadiyat Island's lovely decoration. It is a natural island and a tourismcultural initiative in Abu Dhabi dedicated to environment and Emirati tradition and culture.


Saadiyat Island is projected to become Abu Dhabi's cultural hub once it is completed, owing to the island's cultural district, which will include eight museums.

nother example is the use of plaster. Unlike other types of paint and wall coverings, plaster stands out as an eco-friendly natural material. In addition to its breathability attribute, plaster is free of chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Interior designers can also help by installing energy-efficient air conditioners. A high-efficiency air conditioner can reduce household cooling energy

consumption by up to 50%, according to estimates. Today, many businesses claim to be driven by purpose and use this aspect as a nice-to-have corporate narrative. The reality is creating and running a business rooted in purpose, with actions firmly entrenched in a structured CSR program, is a life-long commitment. Brand promises must be followed up by actions if we are to effectively address our developing social and environmental concerns. All businesses must take it upon themselves to set their own CSR guiding principles. Action over words and impact, not outcome should be the cornerstone of a sound and authentic CSR strategy. Businesses should also adopt universal and common standards to showcase sustainable value creation while maintaining transparency and accountability. By committing to the World Economic Forum’s Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics, for example, business leaders can join a global coalition of companies providing concise, consistent and comparable metrics and disclosures for the benefit of all stakeholders. Our vision is to nurture and pioneer an innovation culture, giving birth to >>>




18 OP-ED

The beautiful outdoor Arabic seating arrangement illustrates how design may be used to achieve a specific purpose.


futuristic thinking and applications for the betterment of the economy, the people and the environment. One of our core values is serving the people and protecting the planet. We strive to preserve the environment in every aspect of our work. From optimizing energy efficiency across our operations to the use of environmentally friendly material and equipment across our product line, we are committed to playing our role

and making humble contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Decade of Action (2020-2030) to deliver the SDGs (2015-2030) represents an opportunity for MENA’s homegrown startups and venture capital investors to show the world that there is more to unicorn status than scale-up, expansion and profit. If every startup is born with a builtin moral obligation to contribute, and its sustainability commitments hold after becoming a unicorn, then we stand a better chance to achieve the SDGs. Our region is not short of innovative startups being built and supported to reach a value of over a billion dollars in a few years, so why don’t we see emerging businesses joining the billion-dollar social impact club in such a short time span? The UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs, 2000-2015) did make a difference. But was it enough? While

the MDGs helped us improve the state of the world to a certain extent, we didn’t manage to accomplish the desired environmental and socio-economic change such as eradicating poverty and achieving universal primary education. For the SDGs to yield more successful results, the collective sustainable impact of companies should go hand-in-glove with business growth. Social entrepreneurship, or the creation of a firm with a purpose at its core, is likely to help us in addressing some of the world's most pressing concerns. The actions of the small, medium and large enterprises over the next nine years will primarily determine whether we eliminate some of our most severe problems or prolong them for another 15 years.

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20 Interview 2008, where he served as managing director since 2013. He has been involved in numerous successful projects and has a proven track record of increasing corporate revenues and profitability while managing teams of more than 1,700 employees. Papakonstantinou lifted the prestigious CEO of the Year trophy at Design Middle East Awards 2021.

Technology As the Way FORWARD! Dimitri Papakonstantinou






Dimitri Papakonstantinou joined ASI a subsidiary of ASGC construction in September 2018, headquartered in the UAE, ASI delivers turnkey fit-out solutions across the UAE and has a manufacturing facility as well as a complete in-house project. Amongst his previous roles, he was a founding member of Plafond Fit-Out in

information and data on both our site operations and our joinery facility in the coming months. How challenging was it to work on the projects for Expo 2020, especially during COVID-19?

What reforms have you implemented at ASI, and how has this benefited the organisation?

We set up a Project Management Office (PMO) a few months ago to strengthen our project reporting and controls, as well as our control of project delivery reports, so that we could be more agile in our decision-making. This is still workin-progress, but I'm expecting to give live

Expo 2020 was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. As expected, the last months leading up to the inauguration were extremely difficult, but the excitement of the build-up to the 1st October opening day could be felt every day. COVID-19 introduced new obstacles that no one had ever faced before, both on Expo and non-Expo projects. Although the impact was likely felt more in 2020, the frequent disruption had a long-term influence on the initiatives. It necessitated frequent communication with all >>>


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stakeholders in order to keep them up to date on the situation. I believe we are fortunate that Expo and the UAE as a whole handled the pandemic in such a way that business and daily life could go on as usual.


Dubai Mall China Town Boulevard Expansion: The Dubai Mall Boulevard Expansion project includes the conversion of multiple levels of the existing car park to a doubleheight retail mall.

What was your approach for various Expo 2020 projects? How did you ensure that there was a sense of uniqueness while maintaining the greatest level of quality?

Each project was distinct in that it reflected a country, its culture, innovations, food, and other aspects. We were involved in the design and construction of some of the pavilions we built from the beginning. This necessitated an awareness of the most significant feature that the specific participant wished to emphasise in order to provide advice on how to effectively spend their budget.

How can these exceptional Expo 2020 projects benefit ASI in the industry?

We created an exhibition department that was in charge of the creative development of the project's content and exhibition. This provided knowledge to our team that we did not previously have, as well as a new skill set that can be employed in future museum and exhibition projects. What kind of projects do you want to do now?

It’s back to business as usual at the moment where most of our involvement is again in hospitality projects. We’re currently carrying out works on several hotels, entertainment, and retail.

time, rising raw material and shipping costs necessitate price increases, which clients are not always willing to accept.

What are the challenges in the market at present?

ASI is evolving, and I'd like us to concentrate as much as possible on technological advancements in our sector. Over the next 3-5 years, we want to grow into two new countries.

Although there are some positive signs in the market over the past few months, competition is still very tight. At the same

What is forming as your vision for ASI in the future? What do you want ASI to accomplish in the next few years?

22 Brand building

Driven Passion by




“ M A R B L E H A S A LWAY S B E E N A N D W I L L A LWAY S R E M A I N T H E M O S T D E F I N I T I V E D E C L A R AT I O N O F L U X U RY I N A N Y B U I L D I N G , YO U C A N ’ T M A K E A M O N U M E N T W I T H O U T M A R B L E .’ ’

GLAZE Granite & Marble CEO UMESH PUNIA discusses his entrepreneurial journey, the brand's unique offerings, and exciting future plans


pioneer in the region’s marble industry for over two and a half decades, GLAZE Granite & Marble CEO, Umesh Punia, has elevated the natural stone industry by offering a rich narrative of the timeless charm of marble, and an even richer experience to its clients hoping to transform their living spaces.

Main Role…. “My main role has always been the same, sourcing dynamic, top-quality marble from all around the world while maintaining the best prices. Natural stones can be quite deceptive for the end user, and our job is to source and stock the best options,” he adds. In addition, he supervises, monitors imports, and uncovers the best value for investment on behalf of the clients using only the

best expertise, network, and resources. How it all started…. At the onset of his entrepreneurial journey, Punia notes that the marble and granite industry did not really evolve much until 2002, or 2003. The stone market was limited to a few Italian marbles and some granites, there really wasn’t much variety in what people were stocking in the


Customers can walk through the stone gallery to experience the intricacies of the exact product that will end up in their floors, homes or offices.

Connoisseur's collection Marble offers an incomparable luxury that holds the power to elevate the aesthetics of any room. Like a Hermes bag or a Rolex watch - it is a statement, a declaration of success, an arrival. “Marble is no less of an investment than a gemstone stone from a reputable jewellery house. You must understand, people don’t buy marble as a basic necessity, people invest in marble for their home or office for future generations to marvel upon.” A well-known connoisseur will certainly not settle for cheap ceramic flooring. He or she looks for splendour and magnificence spilling out of each corner in the room, including the flooring. Marble does just that. It adds grandeur and opulence. This is why marble has stood the test of time and its beauty will never diminish.


Glaze boasts the only State of the Art stone facility and gallery in the Middle East.

Owing to the UAE's visionary leadership and business-friendly reforms, Mr. Punia affirms that the UAE is the perfect place for businesses to thrive and grow. Having started from ground up, Glaze, today prides itself on having a clear vision for its global clientele and offers an everlasting experience with unparalleled level of attention to detail.


Trend tracker and trendsetter In having kept a discerning view on what’s trending in the flooring, cladding and countertop market for over twenty-six years, Punia has made marble his passion.

Discovering new and quality marble has always been more of an obsession than a livelihood. “When I started traveling to Italy in the late 90’s, visiting the world’s most important stone galleries, I was fascinated and excited every time I stumbled upon a new exotic stone. I would jump at the chance to learn its origin, source, chemical composition, and I eagerly studied its grain size, texture, hardness, polishing degree, so that I could add it to my own growing collection. The greatest passion in my work is adding more and more better-quality marble to our stone gallery. This passion is the biggest reason why we have the largest collection of stones in the world and not just in the Middle East.”


UAE. During the real estate boom in the early 2000’s he witnessed a great demand which also drew in countless architects and designers from London, Singapore, Hong Kong, New York, and all over. They were looking for those special and exotic stones that were usually reserved for only the most exclusive projects around the world for the new developments in Dubai. That’s when the market then began to evolve. So much continues to evolve to this day.

State-of the-art stone gallery Over the years, Punia has been one of the frontrunners in changing the way marble and other natural stones are sold in the UAE. Years ago, marble was kept in open dusty yards, like any ordinary construction or masonry stones. GLAZE conceptualised marble from a totally different perspective. When i saw the way marble was displayed and showcased in the >>>

24 Brand building




With over 400 unique options available, Glaze provides customers with the most expansive range of natural stones.

Rare and exotic stones like Amazonite are only available at Glaze through their exclusive agreements with top quarries around the world.

top galleries in Europe, I was mesmerized and inspired. Moreover, this attitude translated into all aspects of the business, not only hand picking the best stones from every corner of the world, but also the way we showcased and displayed these materials in our stone gallery, with exceptional training provided to our sales team. We feel proud that today the quality of natural stone in the UAE, not only in our gallery but in that of some of our competitors as well, is far ahead of other GCC countries and the Middle East as a whole. Initially, people were surprised that we were trying to sell stone as a luxury product, and my answer has always been the same - why not? You spend millions to buy quality cars, furnishings, or artwork for your home, why not on the floor which you use much more than your

Ferrari? Understanding the value of these stones radically changed the way the marble business and its trade takes place in the UAE. I consider this as my biggest accomplishment and contribution to the industry." ‘Experiential gallery’ conceptualised for customers The Glaze gallery is not just a beautiful building and a clean space. It's an experience. Whether it’s the layman, or a specifier for an architectural studio, sitting in an office, you can’t really grasp the intricacies of a natural stone. When any designer, homeowner, or contractor walks into the Glaze gallery, they see and appreciate what makes every stone unique. All stones may be beautiful in their own right, but to select the exactly perfect shade that fits with the design concept of a space is a difficult task. “Our clients always remark that it would have been a mistake to not walk through the gallery, a s nature’s designs are simply irresistible. For us, it was so important to create the right ambience and environment where people can appreciate our greatest passion.”

Unique offerings creating a business niche Glaze has collaborations with top brands like Neolith, Caesarstone, Coante, ARIOSTEA, KoZo, and GEOLUXE. It also possesses exclusive agreements with top quarries in Italy, Spain, Turkey, Greece and Brazil. This allows a continuous flow of material and exclusive access to the very best collections. Glaze’s huge inventory, the greatest in the Middle East allows the team to deliver immediately for projects of any scale. What’s next Glaze’s willingness to conceptualise marble from a totally different perspective has been the driving force for growth. The management is looking forward to the new stone gallery opening in Abu Dhabi, in ICAD Mussafah. This will build avenues to adding new natural stones, as well as engineered stones to the collection from different parts of the world. “After more than two decades in the industry, we can really guarantee that we are sourcing the best selections for our clients from every corner of the world in our state-of-the-art facilities”, he added.





At Arada, we build high quality communities. Diverse neighbourhoods that come to life when people share, exchange and celebrate.




26 Cover story

What do

designers hope to see


in 2022?

he fresh year brings new expectations, and designers are rethinking trends to create even more opportunities for innovation and experimentation. We asked the region's top designers what trends and techniques they'll use on their drawing boards, taking into account the ongoing pandemic, shifting needs, tight budgets, sustainability, and technology breakthroughs. What could be the driving elements this year for planned projects across the region, from F&B, healthcare, and education building designs, to raw materials, lighting, paints, technology, and more?

We asked the region's top designers to find out what trends and designs they'll be focusing on in the new year and what they'd want to see. BY ROMA ARORA




Founder, Bishop Design by Paul Bishop



Housed within ME Dubai Hotel, Deseo showcases the best of South America. This Tulum inspired restaurant brings a playful edge to the iconic Opus Tower by Zaha Hadid.

he current projects, especially the ones that we are being approached with, have a common message that resonates through “enough with the pandemic”. We are seeing our clients seeking interiors that celebrate life, above all the post-pandemic life. People want to experience a sense of euphoria again. This is a sentiment that is thriving everywhere, be it Dubai, Saudi Arabia, or across the pond. Projects have become very entertainment-driven and immersive, from family entertainment to high dynamic energy throughout restaurants, bars, lounges, even hotels. Many of our clients are not even considering the pandemic anymore, everyone wants to get back to

enjoying life. We see boundaries being broken. There is no more cookie-cutter approach, places and experiences need to be unique and this uniqueness is celebrated through design. Many of the things we're working on are completely new, and we're discovering new design dimensions and approaches. There will be no more conservatisms and norms, and stereotypical preconceptions will be broken. Thinking about spaces and the user engagement with them

has evolved and again, all of this is driven by entertainment and social interaction. People don’t want to be told what to do. They want a playground to be who they want to be. Yes, some trends are commonly expected to appear or continue their effect but we do not want to fall into the trap of repeating what everyone else is saying and losing sight of new visions and opportunities, just for the sake of conforming. Design should be alluring, it should excite, tease, and engage.

28 Cover story

Sustainably designed island resort in Hurghada, Egypt by Kristina Zanic Consultants is a bright and airy space that shows a simpler take on luxury interiors and incorporates the biophilic movement. It features a soothing palette of greens and beiges, a variety of textured natural materials, and artisanal pieces sourced locally to minimise environmental impact.






Owner & CEO, Kristina Zanic Design Consultants


he ‘return to basics’ mindset that was triggered by the pandemic will continue to drive interior design approaches. Comfort and wellbeing will remain at the forefront of designers’ and clients’ minds, especially when it comes to

public spaces and hospitality. The focus, thankfully, is about how the space makes you feel instead of how it photographed in a magazine or on social media. After the lockdown stress experienced all over the world in the past couple of years, designers will increasingly be putting the calming effect of nature to good use. Biophilia will continue to be a common thread in the design of spaces, with designers incorporating natural elements to create an indoor connection to nature. Residential and hospitality clients are more aware of the positive effect of plants on psychological well-being and air quality. This will lead to increased use of greenery combined with natural materials in varying tonal ranges. People today are not only interested in a design item but the story behind it as well.

This will lead to the revival of the artisans. Customers want a unique, ethical, and authentic design that celebrates quality craftsmanship, diverse cultures and ancient techniques. And instead of being confined to traditional spaces, these pieces can fit very comfortably today with contemporary styles. Also, in line with an accelerated global sustainability drive, sustainability in design will move forward. The ‘work from home’ movement is not going anywhere and both the home and office will adapt to allow for more flexibility and overlap of functions. The muchpredicted end to open-plan living and workplaces never really did happen because it just offers too many advantages in promoting interaction and communication. I also believe that the clients will invest more to have longlasting healthy environments, due to a greater awareness of physical and mental well-being. We will see ancient techniques like feng shui and new protective paints and materials used to combat insomnia, fatigue, depression and diseases that come with increased exposure to electromagnetic fields. This health-oriented design will work to offset an increased use of artificial intelligence and technology in hotel designs. Hotels will incorporate more technology in design to control operating costs and create an ideal personalised experience for guests.





For the lighting of the IZIL Spa, Brand Creative collaborated with their contractor to source locally available LEDs – a source of light proven to contribute to the conservation of energy. The lighting was not only efficient but also strategically located (studied through experimentation and site mockups) as to not disrupt the seamless vaults and curves in the design. The challenge was to provide appropriate lux level counts for ambience and comfort whilst still effectively highlighting retail products – two completely different objectives in one single space.


of hammams and bathhouses that are derived from ancient practices. This project allowed us to truly incorporate and explore sustainable practices and materials. The Tadelakt plastered walls are natural, lime-based plaster indigenous to the foothills of the Atlas Mountains. Both decorative and waterproof, it has a honed, smooth surface reminiscent of natural stone. We made sure to also focus on the joinery work on the perimeter, utilising Arreis – a sustainable fibreboard and one of the few brands available through a local supplier (reducing carbon footprint). The epoxy flooring brand used, Florock, contributes to five LEED credit categories but still performs well in both wet and high traffic areas.



ver the last year, we have seen designers become more conscious, consumers become more engaged, and overall aesthetic choices that celebrate individualism. With the rise of design apps such as Pinterest, the general population’s awareness and respect for design have risen. Along with that, of course, comes its own set of challenges for designers and necessary education for clients around crafting a unique story for each project as opposed to promoting the “copy-cat” syndrome. Overall, this newly elevated appreciation of the industry means that client design briefs and the demand for innovation is quite refreshing. With the hyper coverage in the press around climate change, ensuring that sustainable practices and materials are infused into projects from the beginning is much easier to present to clients today than it was two decades ago when the conversation was nearly non-existent. We are committed to ensuring more clients are open to this approach in 2022, by presenting compelling solutions that are beautiful whilst maintaining budget. It’s often these two points that cause sustainable materials to be cut from projects. During this past year, we worked on the intimately cultural, health & wellness concept for IZIL Spa houses personal care experiences


Founder & Creative Director, Brand Creative

30 Cover story

“ W E L L- B E I N G I S T H E N U M B E R O N E K E Y . ”


Senior Interior Designer, Swiss Bureau Interior Design & Build





hile we were all working from home, we could create the perfect balancing act of our own accord. Combining personal tasks and work responsibilities throughout the day, such as cooking or doing laundry in between client meetings, per se, allowed us to manage our time better and still have all our responsibilities achieved. We also had access to fresh food and beverages just a few steps away and managed to have small breaks within the comforts of our own home. With that said, situations such as these should encourage employers and designers to offer different scenarios while designing the space to attract

people in again. Well-being is the number one key. Offering good quality of air, access to healthy foods, breakout areas, relaxation areas, and outdoor spaces are examples of what we should be seeing more this year and beyond—also providing services that could make the employer's life more balanced, such as flexible half days, will be instrumental in the upcoming year. Not only are offices considered a workspace these days. Coffee shops and restaurants have now become a place of work. These projects are now given further attention to the quality of lighting, ergonomic furniture, much better acoustic solutions, and more! Cosy corners, sanctuaries, meditation spots, quiet areas, and private spaces are greatly considered. Vice-versa in offices, the feeling of home or a hospitality type of ambience is now taken into play. (An upcoming 21,430sqft project for a private client in Sharjah by Swiss Bureau Interior Design & Build)



FABIDHA SAFAR RAHMAN Design Director, Design Matter


large amounts of energy are required to generate such transactions), efforts are being made to find more sustainable methods. Embracing change is the key to progress and innovation.


performance and communication along the supply chain, ensure human rights protection, enhance healthcare patient confidentiality and welfare. Even though blockchain comes with environmental costs at the moment (as



eb 3.0 is here and it’s here to stay. This being the next internet revolution it only makes sense for architecture and interior design to revolutionize with time. Virtually built environments have takers on many platforms and as each day passes, there is a new playground for designers to play in. Blockchains, crypto, NFTs all seem like foreign scary words and many are still wrapping their minds around trying to better understand it. Like Olga Mack, entrepreneur and blockchain lecturer says “To the average person, it does sound like voodoo, but when you press a button to switch on lights, do you understand how electricity is made?” You don’t have to know how electricity works to understand the benefits. The same is true for blockchain - with added benefits of security, efficiency, speed, and most importantly, transparency - it's democratising and redistributing wealth among creators, sellers, and resellers. Giving creators, artists, and designers powers and rights over their work with complete transparency paves a path for art, product design, interior and architectural spaces that go beyond what we have ever experienced before. All this opens up a lot of opportunities for architects and interior designers to do what hasn't been seen or done before. Blockchains and AI are the future and we are here to embrace innovation and progress. Findings show that blockchain technology can also contribute to the circular economy in a mind-blowing range of ways - from helping to reduce transaction costs, enhance

Embracing Web 3.0 age, Design Matter is releasing its very own in-house NFT of their bespoke designer carpets. The rug, known as ‘Hala, Mareehk’, or ‘Hello Mars’, is the work of boutique design firm,

Design Matter, and is the first piece from their sustainable furnishings collection, ‘series of hope’. Hala, Mareehk and the business will begin to engage in multiverse design.

32 Cover story






Creative Director & Founder, Designsmith


he pandemic may have hit the world very differently as compared to the UAE. The incredible health infrastructure and processes in place have made this the go-to destination for businesses all around the world. Not only are we seeing an all-time high in luxury residential investments but also an upward shift in commercial space developments. We are working on some incredible commercial projects such as the Rohsa Head Quarters spread across 10,000sqft and the much-awaited The Bureau, the largest women’s only co-working space in Emaar Gold and Diamond Park spread across 11,000sqft. The common theme across both these spaces is how we’ve managed to incorporate wellness in a commercial space. It’s been incredible bringing to life wellness break out spaces for staff and employees, furniture design that consider social distancing and specially coated fabrics that are virus repellent.

The Bureau is a one-of-a-kind space in the UAE, the mission for a highly productive co-working space that competes globally as the go-to destination not only has a fitness studio, a café and quiet rooms inside its premises, but also focusses on community building spaces which allow for gatherings, community talks, and more. Trends will come and go, but a well laid out design that allows for growth and functioning remains the call for most new establishments are opening shop now. The lessons learnt from rigid pre-pandemic plans and the flexibility achieved in working from home needs to be seamlessly balanced into what the ideal work environment now is to be. There will be larger shifts from fixed cabins that lined up offices previously to open spaces in organisations that allow for communication, collaboration and corporate wellness to take centre stage and most forward-looking organisations have already adapted to this model.

These are not just trends that will fizzle away as more importance is now given to a. At The Bureau, we’ve tried to create a healthy balance between work and play. We used to go through several rounds of questioning and follow properly zoning and planning to ensure that good design drives each function smoothly.


Deyaar Facilities Management is a company built on excellence and for over 15 years, it has delivered services with unparalleled commitment and highest international standards. Across the Emirates, it has won the hearts of its customers and various stakeholders along with industry accolades. Our services are available across all seven Emirates

For queries please call 800 DEYAAR ( 339227 )




34 Product design

NADA DEBS is a Lebanese designer living and working in Beirut. Her work spans scale and discipline: from product and furniture design to one-off commissions across craft, art, fashion and interiors. What ties her work together is her ability to distil culture and craftsmanship to create pieces of emotional resonance.

NADA DEBS grew up in Japan, studied design at the Rhode Island School of Design in the United States and has spent significant periods of time living and travelling the world, finding connections between different cultures. There is something of each of her experiences in all of her work. In essence, she captures the power of the human hand to tell stories that touch the heart. She calls her approach: handmade and heartmade.

In Gemmayze, DEBS manages a team of 20 designers. They collaborate across disciplines, engaging and connecting suitable suppliers and craftsmen to guarantee that each client's needs are not just satisfied, but exceeded. Annual collections, bespoke furniture and accessories commissions, and collaborations with global manufacturers are among the studio's services.



Image courtesy of Tarek Moukaddem


craftsmanship, aesthetic, and functionality.

assionate about traditional crafts and the impact of culture on design, Nada Debs uses noble materials, geometric patterns and varying textures in the form of concrete, wood and stone to create objects of décor. Not limited to product and furniture design, her work spans scale and discipline to include art, fashion, luxury gifting, and interiors, as well as one-off commissions. Some of her artwork has been exhibited at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Boghossian Foundation in Brussels, and the Arab Museum of Modern Art in Qatar, and she has also completed notable institutional projects and interiors for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (UAE) the Arab League Headquarters (Egypt), the Office of Her Majesty Queen Rania (Jordan), and most recently the UAE Mission to the United Nations in the USA.



Nada Debs , an award-winning Lebanese designer, shares her top 10 favourite design pieces, which she admires for their


Objects of

Here are her top 10 favourite design pieces that are versatile in the design industry.

36 Product design


Shell Chair by Carl Hansen \ Although this chair was


first created in 1963, it is considered an architectural masterpiece for a reason. The distinctive and fluid lines, cradled reclining backrest, three arched legs, and wide seating base resembles the form of an open seashell, making it an elegant addition to any living room.

SUKU Table by Niko Koronis


\ Greek designer NIKO KORONIS


Freeform Sofa by Isamu Noguchi



embraces the nuances of architecture and urban product design in his work, and the SUKU TABLE with its red resin gradient colour resembles a cube within a cube. The enclosed bright red cube at the very centre creates a teasing contrast that is both, modern and artsy.

\ Japanese-American artist and designer ISAMU NOGUCHI’S FREEFORM SOFA is a

delightful sight to behold. Slender, organic and graceful, it has the ability to add personality to any room without an overbearing presence. Designed to resemble the smooth forms of river stones, the make, finish and colour selection create an alluring presence, where pared down dressing brings minimalist décor to life.


Supernova Cabinet by David and Nicolas \ Recalling Beirut’s history and taking inspiration from

the night sky, French-Lebanese design studio DAVID/ NICOLAS produced the SUPERNOVA CABINET which is made with Brazilian granadillo wood and rare Brazilian marble. The glass chest that sits elegantly on top of the marble, is fitted with bronze hinges creating a showcase display that defies traditional shelfing for a far more attractive alternative. When used in a dining area, this cabinet lends a noble elegance to the space.

Tendre Marguerite Stool by Omar Chakil \ Created by Egyptian-Lebanese,

artist, and designer OMAR CHAKIL, this hand-sculpted stool is part of a limited-edition collection of 12 pieces, each one stamped, signed, numbered and initialled ‘OC’. It is made of solid, untreated Egyptian alabaster and Pierre Frey cotton velvet and its organic pattern makes for a great addition to any interior setting.



D.152.2 Armchair by Molteni Gio Ponti \ This award-winning armchair, which is part of the GIO PONTI collection, an exciting project from Italian brand MOLTENI & C to re-issue furniture created by Giovanni Ponti, is by far one of the best examples of design in motion. Shaped like a bucket and designed with ergonomic lines that run endlessly from start to finish signalling a smooth sweeping motion, this masterpiece is one that will remain a classic forever.


Baloo Buffet by Carlo & Mary-Lynn Massoud \ Impressionable because of its imperfections, the coloured

\ I love the beauty of

imperfection and this troll chair offers comfort in structure, softness and shape. Ideal for those who rebel against order and sequence, the contrasting colours and inviting ease of this casual chair is one that reveals the bonhomie in every person.


Flora Sofa by Khaled El Mays Massoud

\ An artistic play on texture and

form, this stunning sofa from the FLORA COLLECTION is a fine work of luxury and craftsmanship by Lebanese designer, KHALED EL MAYS. The contemporary design which features four circular wooden legs that hold the velvet upholstered curvaceous base and backrest, is an excellent way to add a captivating element to any room.


Troll Chair by Anastasia Nysten




concrete and foam polystyrene used in the making of this buffet is a work of art by MARY-LYNN AND CARLO MASSOUD. Texture and material are always a winning combination for objects of art that elevate any surrounding, and this buffet is anything but typical.


Future Memories Bench by George Mohasseb /Studio Manda

\ Lebanese artist GEORGES MOHASSEB has created a work of art with

the design of this bench that blends modern architecture and technology. Imagining the futures of the 60s and 70s, the unlikely shape of this bench is artistic, abstract and attractive, made of oxidized concrete for a rare colour evolution. This one is a perfect fit for traditional spaces that beg for statement pieces to stand out in size, shape and COLOUR.

A blend of lifestyle & luxury in a timeless elegant atmosphere @slsdubai




40 Project



Tamilla Jazayeri

Designer , founder of the UAE-based practise TAM STUDIO, shows us her latest residential project in Jumeirah Island, Dubai, which emphasises raw architectural aspects while utilising the abundance of natural light.



amilla Jazayeri has a keen eye for modern and stylish designs, which her firm TAM Studio adheres to a tee. TAM studio, which has specialised in bespoke furniture since 2016, has established a reputation for the quality and originality of their work, which is designed and manufactured in the UAE.



The slim brass staircase handle draws your sight to the first floor where the Mesh revolving panels in brass finish divide the common spaces from the private areas upstairs and yet its transparency allows an abundance amount of light into the office space on the first floor.


AM Studio continues to explore the connection between furniture and interior design, creating experiences that go beyond form, ergonomics, and exploring materiality and colours in a more expressive way while maintaining their hallmark minimalism and authenticity. Their most recent residential building, which is located on Dubai's Jumeirah Island, is all about finer things and meticulous attention to detail. Jazayeri says: “Detail is what defines a good design. What we enjoy in our interior design projects is applying those little details that we focus on in our furniture design process in a larger scale. This truly enriches the space, where every detail & material is considered and is tailored to our client’s vision.”




42 Project

The living area features natural colours and exquisite furnishings, as well as a huge French window that allows natural light to enter.

‘Home island’ is a beautiful five-bedroom villa overlooking the lake with tropical scenery located in Jumeirah Islands. Encapsulated by nature the internal space is a large white canvas with intricate architectural details and open, spacious rooms. The green and lush outdoor area give a total feeling of being secluded and away from the city’s rush. “When we first came across this project, the villa was already under interior construction which had been suspended due to change of owners and we had the opportunity to re-define the space and design an elegant, yet young interior design style,” explained Jazayeri. The project which included full renovation works was inspired by the raw and bare interior of this double-storey villa. The contrast in ceiling height on the ground floor gave the designer the opportunity to morph geometrical spaces and make the space flow seamlessly from the entrance to the staircase and main hall/ dining area creating architectural definitions through linear forms. Jazayeri shared: “Based on our clients brief we decided to maintain the raw image of this white canvas and define the architectural details on the ground floor through contemporary bespoke furniture and joinery work in a natural colour palette including dark American walnut wood and stroke of brass metal. The monochromatic colour scheme with elements of fresh natural plants also connects the interior space to the green and beige landscape.”

TOP The dining space is the most interesting part of the project. Looking up, the curved staircase is accentuated with a built-in bar counter which is hidden from the sight until you have reached the Dining area.





From the staircase looking down, the long-arched windows complimented by organic forms of the furniture and our bespoke grand artwork gives a calm feeling to the room as the individual Bocci pendants float freely in the space and add glamour to this double-height room at night.

Cover story 44 Sustainability


Reducing Global Carbon Emissions/


Embodied carbon and the construction industry’s role in reducing global carbon emissions


BY MATTHEW ANTHONY Associate – Advisory at AECOM

Smoggy view of cars and trucks on highway, with smoke billowing from factory in the background.


he chances are that you are reading this article on an electronic device rather than in printed form. But which medium produces the least carbon emissions? You may firstly think the electronic device is the least sustainable way to read the article as it requires

power to operate, so you may reasonably conclude that the printed matter is responsible for less carbon emissions, however, it is not as simple as that when you consider the embodied carbon. A study by Alma in Finland determined that it takes between 150-190kg of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent, the common scale for measuring the climate effects of different gases) to produce a newspaper or magazine. Apple, the producer of iPads on which millions of publications are read every day, claim that the total lifecycle emissions of a typical model is 130kg CO2e of which only 30% are associated with customer use (iPad Environmental Report, Apple). There are many factors that could influence these findings, such as where the energy is sourced for production and the use of sustainable materials. So, whilst these figures cannot be taken as absolutes, they do provoke holistic thinking about carbon emissions. It also >>>


The lifecycle carbon impact of a building can be split into four stages: production, construction, operation and end-of-life. The production stage accounts for approximately 33% of a building’s carbon impact and includes the extraction of raw materials, transportation and manufacturing into buildings products. The construction stage accounts for a further 8%, and includes all construction activity, including transport of materials and labor to site, installation and commissioning. This means that before a building is ready for occupation, it has already incurred approximately 41% of the total carbon impact ‘upfront’. During

occupation, we enter the operation stage where all direct emissions from energy consumption are incurred, accounting for around 42% of lifecycle carbon impact, with embodied carbon seen in maintenance, repair, refurbishment and asset replacement activity accounting for a further 11%. The remaining 6% of carbon impact is found in the end-of-life stage where demolition, waste processing and disposal is undertaken. The greatest potential for a reduction in the carbon impact of a project is therefore found not only in the operation stage, but in the design stage where upfront carbon can be reduced. Research by C40 Cities, Arup and the University of Leeds suggest ways in which a reduction in embodied carbon can be achieved and highlights the importance of switching to lower carbon materials and using materials more efficiently to reduce the upfront carbon incurred. This can only be substantially achieved with an understanding of a material’s embodied carbon, quantified by an embodied carbon assessment. More general practices during the design stage can be implemented, such as decreasing reliance on duplication in specifications and ensuring buildings are not over-specified either for intended loads or use. >>>




suggests that whilst the printed media may have zero ‘operational’ emissions, its carbon footprint can be higher than an electronic device. Turning this thinking to the built environment, we know that this sector has an important role to play in reducing global emissions. According to the World Green Building Council and the UN Environment Global Status Report, buildings are currently responsible for 39% of global emissions; 28% from operational emissions from energy required to heat, cool and power them and 11% from materials, construction and maintenance activity. These figures are not likely to decline either. As the world’s population continues to grow, the International Energy Agency predicts that the total global building stock will double by 2050. Plans for action achieving net-zero carbon emissions have been announced by governments and organizations worldwide. However, if these targets are going to be met, the embodied carbon responsible for 11% of global emissions from the construction industry alone must be understood, measured, and minimized where possible.


Plans for action achieving net-zero carbon emissions have been announced by governments and organisations worldwide.

It is critical to drive and fly less, use less electricity, generate electricity from sustainable sources, recycle, and reuse where possible.




46 Sustainability

While no specific legislation exists, the UAE National Climate Change Plan (2017-2050) and a recent declaration of UAE becoming a net zero carbon country by 2050.


There is currently a reliance on stated embodied carbon quantification from environmental information on the lifecycle of a product, for which a standardized Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) process has been outlined by the International Organisation for Standardization (ISO) in ISO 14025. However, there are several challenges with using EPDs, not least because they are constantly being updated as manufacturing processes and material selections change, resulting in complex and inconsistent databases. Further complications are found in the methodology for creating an EPD, which relies on the definition of the product using appropriate Product Category Rules (PCRs) that use Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) studies. LCA studies vary in terms of assumptions and considerations depending on the availability of data and can therefore lead to inconsistencies in comparing products that fulfil the same function. Factors such as location, production methods, supply chain conditions and lack of third-party review create additional inconsistencies in EPDs that see various databases being used and no clear benchmark data available.


In the UAE, the Emirates Green Building Council (EGBC) is taking the lead in establishing working groups and raising awareness of embodied carbon in the construction industry, but they acknowledge there is a way to go. The EGBC Embodied Carbon Working Group has been formed to provide useful guidance to the industry with the aim that some legislation may follow to compel the sector to meet targets. While no specific legislation exists, the UAE National Climate Change Plan (2017-2050) and a recent declaration of UAE becoming a net zero carbon country by 2050 – the first Middle East country to make such an announcement – provides a framework to which the issue of embodied carbon cannot be ignored if these targets are to be achieved. The plan itself, which does not explicitly mention embodied carbon, positions the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment as leader in raising awareness in partnership with stakeholders to act. Perhaps the most exciting opportunity to incentivize embodied carbon reduction is

found within project financing, where performance against sustainability goals influence the interest rates available and access to loans. Widely referred to as ‘Sustainability Linked Loans (SLL)’ and guided by principles such as those published by the Loan Market Association (Sustainability Linked Loan Principles, May 2021), these financial products reward borrowers for achieving pre-determined sustainability targets, which rely on the ability to measure, quantify and convey performance against them. This way of financing also meets the ESG demands of lenders who are under scrutiny for lending to fossil fuel industries. In the Middle East, Aldar Properties announced in July 2021 that they secured a 300 million AED SLL with HSBC linked to KPIs, becoming the first MENA company to do so. SUMMARY

Conversations around reducing our carbon impact are usually focused on emissions resulting from direct user activity. We all need to drive and fly less, use less electricity, produce electricity from sustainable sources, recycle and reuse where possible. However, the traditional focus on operational carbon reduction and a misunderstanding of the true impact of embodied carbon remains and needs to be addressed. Direct emissions from any built asset can be roughly equivalent to the embodied carbon incurred ‘upfront’ during the manufacturing and construction phase alone – and continue to be incurred throughout the asset’s lifecycle. The need for the industry to understand, measure and reduce embodied carbon to meet the demands of an informed client is therefore critical to the effort to reduce global carbon emissions if current targets are to be met. Raising awareness of the issue is just the first step.

Dhaheri Building #5356, Salam Street P.O. Box 26417, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates Tel: +971 2 672 1923 | Fax: +971 2 672 0809

48 Tête-à-tête


Uplift and

winner of the Young Talent of the Year at the Design Middle East Awards 2021, on how women need to mentor, encourage, and uplift one another, her aspirations, and technical breakthroughs in design.




KHADIJE HAMAD, associate architect at AEDAS and


hat do you love most about working in architecture?

I enjoy creativity and the freedom to think. It is not just a job; the built environment affects how people think and every aspect of their life. I believe that the creative and problem-solving skills of architects allow us to excel in many fields and help us in achieving personal goals.

Where do you find your creativity and inspiration? I study the past and the history of cities and cultures. Most of the inspiring projects I have been involved in have required extensive research about the past and about the heritage of the city, especially the history of the UAE. I am very keen to learn as much as possible from the past. One of the main things I learned at Aedas was how to translate ideas from the past into ideas for the present and the future. One of my personal projects at the start of the pandemic in 2020, inspired me to transform the traditional burqa into a face unique and fashionable face mask.

Do you see architecture changing because of the COVID-19 pandemic? Of course, it has already changed drastically. We never imagined that architects could work from home. We have successfully completed projects while working remotely. The technology allows us to collaborate with amazing talents across the world without limitations. This approach has proved to be very effective. >>>

TOP High-End Retail Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates CLIENT MODON INVOLVEMENT Project & Design Architect

Inspired from Urban Fabric of Traditional Abu Dhabi, this is a destination with the warmth of ancestral home. The architectural language is enhanced through integrated modern architectural treatments creating a link between the future and past.

BOTTOM RIGHT Jebel Ali Village Phase 2 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates CLIENT WASL INVOLVEMENT Lead Consultant/ Design Architect

The Jebel Ali Village (JAV) consists of residential communities, a commercial business hub focused on innovation, hotels, entertainment, retail, and centrally in the JAV development will provide space for concerts, sports events, film and activity. At the heart of the project is a central park and boulevard to ensure a 24/7 lifestyle and vigor..

Dubai Metro Route EXPO 2020 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates



There are many exciting new trends in technology, such as AI, generative design, and also VR and AR. However, I am more interested in soft skills and communication skills. I truly believe that designing buildings is easy and that communication is the real challenge, and that is what we need to work on.

How do you see architecture evolving in general in the next several years? Architecture is the solution to many issues such as climate change, urban sprawl, and many more. Therefore, architecture will have to be innovative in the materials used and the design of buildings. Sustainability, carbon footprint, price, and innovation all now have to be considered by architects when choosing building materials and in an early design stage.

Can you tell us about any special projects you are working on that exemplify innovation?


What new technologies are you most excited about?

I have noticed how women are not sufficiently recognised in large international firms. It seems that the biggest misconception is that women are expected to have either a family or a career but not both. My goal is to prove that women are resilient and capable of balancing their work and personal life. By working smart and supporting each other, we can have both a loving family and a successful career. It really upsets me when I attend large meetings and only a few women are present. We need to empower young women to fight back and take their rightful place in architectural practices.


What misconceptions do you think people have about women working in architecture? What can be done to change this and uplift them in this field?


INVOLVEMENT Transportation Interior Design

Every project is unique. Each one is a new challenge and a journey. One of our recently completed projects was the interior design for the Expo Metro Station. It was a great challenge and, of course, the design brief was to deliver a unique futuristic design that reflects Dubai’s vision of the future. Therefore, it was a great pleasure being part of such a successful project and part of a great design team.

What would be your dream commission? It would be a project that benefits the local community and sets the standard for young architects. Most importantly, however, my dream is to be able to continue in this field while fighting all the stigma and balancing my family life, and my career path.

50 Review




BATRA is an experienced Chief Executive Officer with a track record of success in the hospitality sector. He excels at negotiation, sales, management, and marketing strategy.


A Feast for the




ALOKI BATRA, CEO of FIVE, spoke with Design Middle East about the appeal of Soul Street, its design aesthetics, and the hotel's future plans. If you want to experience the best of Dubai's delectable street cuisine and exciting nightlife, head to Soul Street, FIVE Jumeirah Village. The atmosphere is captivating, and the cuisine selection includes delights from Latin America, India, the Levant, Europe, and Asia. If you have a sweet craving, this restaurant delivers exceptional dessert creations by René Frank, a two-Michelin-star chef.

This restaurant is more than just great food; the street art by international artists and the buzzing music by live performers make it one of Dubai's most Instagrammable restaurants. Stunning murals and hand-built installations created to symbolise each of the restaurant's culinary styles. Flowers and foliage can be seen all throughout the space, making it a photo-perfect place.

51 TOP Soul St invites diners from all over the world to connect and mingle over food and music.

BOTTOM From sunset drinks or the ultimate high energy dining experience, to daily changing live music lounge nights – Soul Street is the definition of cool.

What are the most challenging issues the industry is facing? Dubai being a hub for global travellers with high standards for luxury accommodation and culinary excellence has an extremely competitive landscape - hence, at FIVE we are continually evolving our offerings without compromising on quality so our guests are constantly delighted with the innovations, yet are treated to a FIVE-styled experience that they have come to expect.

How has Expo 2020 boosted tourism, resulting in an influx of visitors to hotels and restaurants? Expo 2020 has successfully drawn in to Dubai a diaspora from around the world.




When you dine in a restaurant, what else do you look at besides the menu? Besides incredible food and beverages off the menu, I believe that diners are looking for a sensational 'vibe' - which is a combination of luxurious and evocative interiors, mood-enhancing music and exceptional guest services that stimulates all the senses. At FIVE, we provide a unique 'Vibe at FIVE' that encompasses all of the above (mouthwatering dishes, Instagram friendly interiors, chart topping beats) at each one of our homegrown venues - from Soul Street to Cinque, from Beach by FIVE to Maiden Shanghai at both Five Jumeirah Village and FIVE Palm Jumeirah. Therefore, visitors are treated to unforgettable memories and not just a meal - which is why we have many loyal, repeat customers at our venues.

And at FIVE, we are always prepared for an influx of visitors, we offer every guest the very best of luxury accommodation, award-winning culinary and entertainment experiences in the very heart of Palm Jumeirah. FIVE remains a Landmark in Dubai for locals and visitors alike. The FIVE Tribe is excited to welcome our Expo 2020 guests to the unique and exciting Vibe at FIVE.

In your opinion, what is the most impressive part of the hotel? At FIVE Jumeirah Village, one can experience an urban penthouse lifestyle with 269 pools and Jacuzzis and vast lush green terraces - along with a culinary and party scene like no other. It's

a unique, and exceptional, destination for Zillenials.

How much do you depend on word of mouth and social media? FIVE is a digitally-driven brand, our social media channels stand at over half a million engaged followers (and growing) while 60 per cent of our booking come directly via the brand website. Most visitors experience the brand digitally first and are then inspired to visit FIVE to experience the Vibe at FIVE for themselves personally. Word of mouth continues to be our greatest source of new customers, our loyal clientele is very vocal about their 'FIVE Star' experiences." >>>

52 Review

Walk into Soul Street and you'll feel the energy of the world's street food markets.

At Soul St Dubai the food and art become the talking point, providing diners with a base to connect and mingle.

TOP From Wednesday to Saturday, the street art is perfectly paired with a live DJ, creating a lively street ambience for the ultimate hangout.

BOTTOM Relax by dancing to the coolest beats. The experience is enthralling.

What makes Soul Street unique, and can you tell us more about its interior design and decor? Soul St Dubai is a melting pot of cultures that celebrates the art of global street food with its lavish gourmet street food menu, international street art, bespoke furniture, and live music, creating an immersive dining experience as if you would walk your favourite street food market around the world. Street food is one of the oldest yet most social dining forms, Soul St invites diners from around the world to meet and mingle, explore melting pot cultures, and find a home away from home with authentic culinary treats from five different cuisines. At Soul St Dubai the food and art become the talking point, providing diners with a base to connect and mingle. Creating a platform for creatives from around the world, Soul St’s interiors are carefully curated and features street art from well-known international artists and up and coming talent, such as 3D graffiti duo PichiAvo, pop art rebel Sanuj Birla and detailed portrait painter LAUCKY. One of the rawest forms of art, Soul St’s street art encourages artists to express their creativity and their interpretation of nowadays melting pot culture through the eyes of art. The restaurant currently boasts seven culturally inspired areas, including a

Japanese sushi bar, Latin American Shisha lounge, Mexian and Spaniard street, Levantine corner, Indian wall and modern Hong Kongese Asian area. Adding to the creative charm, the furniture in the venue has been carefully picked from local souks as well as bespoke pieces such as a Cadillac DJ booth have established the venue as a highly Instagrammable day to night destination. After the great success of Soul St Dubai that launched in Q4 2019, the venue keeps evolving its art, as well as two new areas have been added to the venue in Q1 2022– a Japanese sushi lounge and Latin American shisha bar. Soul St Dubai, the art of global street food, creating a platform for creative exchange and expression.

What is your vision for the future of FIVE? FIVE Hotels and Resorts will continue to grow on a global stage - from Dubai to Zurich, and beyond - as we aim to take the Vibe at FIVE to International audiences across the world for them to be able to experience it first hand. Our Music Label, FIVE Music will continue to evolve to encompass and showcase the Sound of FIVE to a worldwide audience. Fly FIVE (the FIVE Party, now on a plane) will take to the skies in Q4 of 2022. Stay Tuned...

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54 Digital transformation



of LWK + PARTNERS, discusses how digital solutions are drastically altering operational practices and accelerating project delivery.




KEREM CENGIZ, managing director


t this last year’s Cityscape Global at Dubai Exhibition Centre in Expo 2020, LWK + PARTNERS hosted a capsule display inspired by travelling trunk shows, the exposition titled “MACRO - TO - MICRO | CITY – TO – HOME”

KEREM CENGIZ is the managing director – MENA at LWK + PARTNERS. With a strong design-led background and technical and commercial aptitude, he has had over 25 years of international experience across all aspects of design and real estate development. Cengiz aims to create developments that contribute in combining high urban design quality with assured commercial success through thought, innovation, strong leadership and effective management

industry as we know it. As systems and tools to reimagine the built environment, they present diverse opportunities to rethink traditional workflows and accessible automation products for the way we wish to live our lives. For example, this year we showcased one of our groups designed Robotic Baristas at Cityscape, it attracted an incredible level of attention and delight, yet automation has been widely adopted by the manufacturing industry for decades. We want to bring this into what we do and what we offer. Yet, we seldom find high levels of automation in the construction industry or in our homes. We asked ourselves why is this and how can we make it a reality? Ultimately, the least discussed but most powerful benefit of robotics and automation in construction is the unlocking of design possibilities and the automation of our day to day living environments and how this practically interfaces at the city intelligence scale. >>>


“MACRO - TO - MICRO | CITY – TO – HOME” narrates a story through an interactive display, audio visual pieces, 3d printed sculptures, a series of Architectural infographics AI & Robotics.



t a stroke, this has transformed the practice into an agent of digital change. One not merely talking design of the intelligent environments, instead of true digital transformation. The design, production, and integration of smart and automated systems for the built environment with their sister companies is BIM and Know. Kerem Cengiz, managing director, MENA states “that as innovators we seek a better urban future for the global communities in which we are established, LWK + PARTNERS has long adopted a multidisciplinary approach that we have developed across our technology-led research studios to harness the possibilities of the future through digital transformation, integration and now automation both in our studios but in people’s workplaces and homes.” Cengiz went on to say: “By 2025, it predicted that there will be at least 26 major intelligent cities around the world. While some still believe that as our cities get more intelligent, they will resemble dystopian science fiction movies, the reality is that the quality of life in these cities has already, and will continue to dramatically improve. Cities are becoming more efficient with better services.” To reach these ideals, Cengiz spoke of the process itself and evaluated the challenges that LWK + PARTNERS and its sister companies isBIM and Know faced in their respective journeys of coming together and how they responded to technology and innovation in their planning, architectural design, and how the execution of the projects is pivoting. “The traditional project execution paradigm currently in use has limitations and is not well equipped to handle the complexities of implementing the significant capital projects we are seeing in the region today,” Cengiz stated. He went on to explain that “these traditional execution models can lead to cost and schedule overages. There are many examples of significant recent projects taking longer than expected to complete at a higher-than-expected cost.” As cities continue to develop, new tools emerge to change the way architects, contractors and consumers envision and create the built environment. Building data and codes are becoming more accessible, and in turn, have begun to reach a point where homeowners and developers can input a set of information and an optimised design is produced. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, generative design and automation have begun to our



56 Digital transformation




Since 2018, LWK + PARTNERS has been involved in and contributing to the development of the built environment in MENA. The company is dedicated to being ahead of the curve, thinking ahead, and producing what's next.

BOTTOM For decadesretail malls have operated as an introverted mechanism responding largely to a uniquely commercial program. But what if the mall is unable to continue as a self-serving or standalone constituent and would need to be amalgamated back into the city.

We decided to actively explore our partnership with sister company Know to explore opportunities to commercialise robotic technologies, automated systems, and AI. To adapt them to the workspace and our homes in a way that would encourage the adoption of automation within our communities and cities. For us it has been a paradigm change, it is disruptive and causes the business to redefine how it works so that it delivers a positive customer experience. Digital solutions are significantly changing operational standards and streamlining project delivery. Key to this shift has been the technical data hub and the common data environment created by our sister company isBIM which is at the core of digital execution. Without these two essential unifying elements, the various information systems we use would be nothing but a collection of information silos.

The common data environment is vital to providing project participants with one set of data to describe the various aspects of the project and is essential in maintaining data integrity. The hub gathers information and is the single access point for all project participants and stakeholders to get project data and documents easily and quickly. What is different in our common data environment is how information is stored and shared among these applications and the high degree of integration among these information systems, which eliminates the silo effect. This makes it easier to unlock the full potential of new digital technologies, such as augmented reality, in the design and construction of a capital project. Cengiz concluded by stating: “Intelligent city technology doesn’t necessarily consist of autonomous vehicles and drones. In fact, it can take on simpler initiatives like air quality sensors near highways, water sensors in stormwater drains, etc.” Governments and communities believe that technology can solve problems, Cengiz rephrased it, “putting people at the centre of the equation, we can initiate a better conversation, determine specific issues, and find contextual technology-based solutions to fix obstacles.” He continued: “Smart cities have become a tool for marketing, with identical strategies implemented everywhere in the world, we suggest starting small. With precisely contained activations, city leaders can identify key problems and explore them with intelligent technologies. Different technologies can be explored, monitored and amended according to tangible results, cities can reach more efficient solutions. These are the discussion that LWK + PARTNERS and Know are having with governmental entities across the region right now.”


58 Decor review


The Palazzo Versace Dubai is the epitome of sophistication, opulence, and grandeur.





The beauty of Dubai is the luxury options it offers, with the swankiest designs and architectural marvels, one of the finest of which mirrors all of this and more is the Palazzo Versace Dubai. Palazzo Versace Dubai is perfectly positioned along the shores of the historic Dubai Creek in the heart of Jaddaf Waterfront, less than 15 minutes from Dubai International Airport and eight minutes from the Burj Khalifa and Downtown Dubai.





THE VERSACE HOME COLLECTION is featured throughout the Palazzo Versace's rooms and suites, with cheerful colours including turquoise, blue, beige, gold, and salmon. The linen and upholstery, which feature original Versace designs and decor, take elegance and comfort to new heights.

60 Decor review


GIARDINO is an excellent choice for breakfast because it offers a diverse gourmet selection with a variety of international stations, all set in a vibrant, Versace-inspired setting with marble terrazzo flooring and exquisite columns.



THE SPA has separate thermal suites for men and women, each with a spa pool, sauna, steam room, relaxation area, big changing rooms, and a luxurious Moroccan hammam sanctuary.

Q’S BAR AND LOUNGE provides the perfect old-world charm that can be enjoyed over fine cigars, sumptuous bar bites and a wide selection of beverages inspired by the legendary achievements of Quincy Jones.


t's hard to describe its genuine beauty until one visit and witnesses it for oneself. It's a neoclassical masterpiece that blends beautifully with features of Arabian architecture. As one enters the area, one is taken aback by the majestic entrance, lofty ceilings, planted gardens, and stylish Italian furnishings, which all embody the opulent Versace lifestyle. The hotel offers 215 rooms, and the Versace opulence is evident in every detail, from parquet flooring to an extensive canvas of white and cream boiseries, and a pastel

palette of silk furniture. Traces of classical Italian design can be found throughout the area. The tranquil views of Dubai Creek or Jaddaf Waterfront from a private balcony or terrace cannot be matched. Using smart technology, guests may regulate the lighting and temperature inside the room. Apart from the spectacular rooms, the one of the most striking spots is the bathroom, which has handcrafted mosaic and Carrara marble tiling that provides a blend of detail and simplicity — the perfect backdrop to your walk-in rainforest shower. >>>

The hotel includes three outdoor pools, each with mosaic tiles and palm trees and flowers. This is a lovely hotel to enjoy with friends and family because of the lush green and wonderfully landscaped gardens, as well as the views of the Dubai Creek and skyline. Head to Giardino for breakfast, where you'll find a diverse culinary offering with an array of international stations, all set in a bright and airy atmosphere with marble 'terrazzo' flooring and ornate columns. Vanitas, a gorgeous neoclassical Italian restaurant, is one of several restaurants to choose from. The entire experience is made memorable by the joyful ambience, energetic DJ performances, and live dancing groups. Vanitas, a restaurant with delicacy, focusses on classic Italian cuisine and offers a menu of expertly curated dishes. Enigma, on the other hand, provides a modern Persian experience. The restaurant features both indoor and outdoor seating with stunning views of the main pool and Dubai Creek. Head to award-winning Quincy Jones' first-ever bar for die-hard music fans. The

Q's Bar and Lounge features world-class performances by young musicians chosen by the music giant himself, who has earned 28 Grammy Awards. Keeping with the space's old-world appeal, the luxurious velvet couches and mahogany tables mix in flawlessly with the atmosphere of the bar. There's nothing greater than the hotel's The Spa for total relaxation. The nearly 1000sqm area boasts Granito Nero Assoluto marble floors that coordinate with grey degrade mosaics and white birch wood walls with mother-of-pearl embellishments. Seven opulent treatment rooms, a manicure studio, and an exquisite spa suite with its own private Jacuzzi and monsoon rain shower are all part of the area. The spa pools have bright turquoise tiles. The motifs of the décors are nautical: cornucopias intertwined with little seashells and decorated curlicues. When one arrives at a hotel, the idea is to rest, unwind, and experience something new, and this property provides all of that and more. Palazzo Versace Dubai is undoubtedly a magical destination with a well-curated area for every mood, occasion, and celebration.

The spectacular 'Pietra di Fiume' design of the iconic Medusa and Greek décor greets guests upon arrival. A stroll around the public spaces of the 5-star hotel shows various Versaceexclusive designs and textiles, while the lagoon pools and reflection ponds add to the tranquilly of the property.





62 Supplier focus


01 VittEr Design


e're still in the grip of a pandemic, and working from home appears to be here to stay. Here are some of the most stylish and functional tables and bookcases for you…

\ \


ittEr Design is a brand founded in the Bergamo valleys, Northern Italy, in 2019 by Filippi 1971, a company with 50 years (19712021) of international experience in the furniture industry and in the supply of complete kits and customised design components for campers and caravans. With this new brand, Filippi 1971 aims to enhance and highlight their exclusive material, VittEr, in the world of design and furniture.





What are the most popular designs? How has working from home has increased their demand?

Whether at home or in the office, it is important to create a dynamic and functional work environment with large and practical workstations. In addition to the Tomè tables, with the increase in working from home, VittEr Design, together with the architects Basalia + Rota Nodari, has presented a solution that includes desk and bookcase, two elements that meet and intersect, one in support of the other, to create a single piece of contemporary design. This is Smart Working, a functional and transversal furnishing that comes into balance with the domestic space and enriches its style thanks also to the different chromatic moods proposed by the company.

What are the commonly used materials and why?

We use100% Italian compact stratified laminate which is formaldehyde-free,

resistant, waterproof and completely recyclable, renewable and eco-sustainable (it is manufactured with cellulose-based papers from a sustainable, certified chain of custody and without the use of additional resins or glues). A highly resistant material that guarantees durability, ease of use and ease of sanitising the surface (on an already antibacterial basis), important characteristics for a product intended for the home office and office.

Before you buy, think about the following…

Before buying a product, think about the environment in which it will be placed and its aesthetics, the functionality you need and also its sustainability for high-quality and long-lasting solutions. Inputs from FRANCESCA FILIPPI, Project Manager of VITTER DESIGN

\ The Smart Working collection by VittEr Design, designed by the architects Basaglia + Rota Nodari, is aimed to create a dynamic and functional work environment, perfect for the home office: it is a large and practical workstation where a desk and bookcase join and intersect, one in support of the other, to give life to a single piece of contemporary design.


02 OFIS \ \


Known for their high-quality office furniture with an extremely functional design, DVO, in partnership with OFIS, offers an affordable selection of reception units, conference tables, benching, storage and architectural glass walls. As an Italian manufacturer, DVO offers the competitive edge of having a shorter lead time in comparison to other Italian manufacturers in the industry.

What are the commonly used materials and why?

Office furniture is primarily made from three materials: wood, metal, plastic, or a mix of the three. Wood tends to be the


Currently, the ‘DV816 NIDA” by DVO is popular as it features a selection of colourful worktops including writing desks that are perfect to create the ideal home environment. Similarly, Interface's ‘Iridescence’ collection is in high demand among our flooring solutions, as its high-performance Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) enhances workspaces with an organic colour spectrum, integrated module system, and superior noise reduction. Working from home has led to a rise in demand for these designs as employees, freelancers, and self-employed professionals seek flexible environments which enable multi-tasking between personal and work-related responsibilities. Moreover, demand has shifted from communal furniture towards individualistic and multipurpose furniture as working from home increasingly becomes the norm for some companies.

most common among the three due to its accessibility and sturdy nature. Solid wood provides a sophisticated appearance while lasting longer. Whereas, plywood eliminates waste that occurs during sawing, therefore making it more sustainable. Metals can be easily reshaped to create customised options. The thickness of sheet metal usually determines its quality and, therefore, its durability. Then, Plastic tends to be inexpensive and highly versatile as it can be easily moulded to suit different design specifications and incorporate a wide variety of colours.


What are the most popular designs? How has working from home increased their demand?



FIS is a leading solutions provider for office furniture and flooring. For the past 34 years, we have worked closely with architects, interior designers, and end-users to help them find the right furniture and flooring products across the corporate, educational, healthcare, and hospitality sectors.

Before you buy, think about the following:

A few aspects to consider before purchasing office furniture include budget, space –ergonomics, durability, aesthetic, and sustainability. Choosing sustainable office furniture is always a plus. Look out for sustainability certifications; these can enhance your workspace by promoting cleaner air, preventing health risks, and more. Inputs from ADRIAN SHAW, CEO of OFIS

64 Supplier focus

03 Crate & Barrel \ \


rate and Barrel is an industryleading omnichannel home furnishings speciality retailer, known for its exclusive designs, excellent value and superb customer service. In addition to a direct marketing division that services more than 90 countries, the company operates stores throughout the U.S. and Canada as well as franchise locations in Dubai, Mexico, Singapore, the Philippines, Taiwan, Costa Rica, Chile, Colombia, and Peru.




\ ABOUT CRATE & BARREL \ What are the most popular designs?

In your home office, you’ll need the right furniture pieces to inspire productivity. Such as desks that create the perfect workspace with one of our desks. We have desks in a multitude of styles and designs, including leaning, storage, campaign, secretary, space-saving and more. We also have work and hobby tables that can double as a convenient desk or workspace. Many of our desks have drawers that eliminate clutter and provide easy storage. Our desks are available in a variety of price points so you can find one that fits your budget. Moving on to the office chairs, whether you’re looking for a classic leather swivel chair with casters or a more modern upholstered design, we have a chair you’ll love. Many of our chairs are adjustable and designed for comfort so you can stay focused on the work at hand. Available in leaning, open and cabinet styles, many of our bookcases are part of home office collections with matching desks. Inputs from AMALIE WIJESINGHE, marketing manager of CRATE & BARREL

Twist desk pivots on a round hub to serve a variety of functions. In its compact form, the table surfaces nest to create an office desk. Expanded, they part to become an expansive executive desk or angle as a corner desk. In fact, the desk rotates a full 360 degrees, creating any number of configurations to suit your space. The drumshaped hub has an integrated door that opens to a fixed shelf for storage. Made of ash veneer, the expandable desk is given a whitewash finish to bring out the wood's dynamic grain. A bold approach to home office decor, the Twist desk is a Crate & Barrel exclusive.





What are the commonly used materials and why? Walnut root matte, carrara, and estremoz marble are the most common used materials, because as a brand we always want to preserve a contemporary modern feeling in its pieces, providing them elegance, functionality, and space.


Caffeine Bookcase is the ideal piece for your modern and contemporary living room, providing elegance and space with its walnut root veneer matte and bronze matte finishes. The bookcase has modular feet that adapt quickly to any room.


What are the most popular designs? The most popular designs are Antigua, Vinicius and Florence Tables, but Caffeine Bookcase is our best-seller.


AFFE LATTE is a collection of furniture, lighting, and accessories with a remarkable ability to fit into any style of interior due to its modern aesthetic, minimalist and functional design, and consensual focus on neutral tones. The strong yet not overpowering designs value first and foremost the space and concept they are selected to furnish, while craftsmanship provides the quality in details that makes all projects unique.

Inputs from DAVID MAGALHÃES, press manager of CAFFE LATTE.

66 Pick of the month

Klekktic's Pierre Chair would be a terrific complement to your modern lifestyle. This chair is a superb combination of design and comfort, inspired by the great Pierre Jeanneret. The lovely wood frame provides not just a stable basis but also a fantastic sense of warmth. The padding is gentle but firm. You have a variety of fabrics and colours to pick from.

Klekktic celebrates a year in business, and its founder, Heba El Habashy, has opened a physical store in Dubai's Al Quoz neighbourhood, where customers can arrange an appointment with an interior designer and customise their furniture in a serene yet eclectic setting.

Ode & ATwist

Image courtesy of Natelee Cocks





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COSENTINO CITY DUBAI Dubai Design District (D3) Building 4-A, Unit 401 COSENTINO CITY DUBAI Dubai Design District (D3) Building 4-A, Unit 401 042428131 - 042428131 - The Silestone® LOFT®series designs have been registered by Cosentino S.A.U. The Silestone LOFT series designs have been registered by Cosentino S.A.U.

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