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122, Valley Road, B’Kara T 2149 2149

122, Valley Road, B’Kara T 2149 2149

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contents ISSUE 57 OCTOBER 2012 013 Reader Letters 015 Home News 021 Trends Spot 023 Greenworks 028 The Happy Home 036 The Conception 044 The Orchestration 052 Warmth 062 Exclusive Glimpse: Local Furniture Trends 075 Home Ideas 089 Garden News 090 What’s Your Flora? 097 Food News 098 Cuisine: The Big Pumpkin 103 Pure Projects 108 A-Z Directory 114 Address Book

028 THE HAPPY HOME A home-loving couple embark on a complete conversion to create a cheerful and functional family home in Lija

036 THE CONCEPTION In response to tight site constraints and rigid planning regulations, a noble historic prototype is revived by Architecture Project

062 EXCLUSIVE GLIMPSE: LOCAL SHOWROOM TRENDS HOMEWORKS presents an exclusive glimpse of what’s hot this autumn in the local showrooms

098 CUISINE: THE BIG PUMPKIN Executive Hilton Malta Chef Joe Vella welcomes in autumn with three delicious pumpkin recipes



bulthaup & core: a new challenge in the design era! At bulthaup we understand the desires of individuals who are fascinated by the sensuality of high-quality materials and by the aesthetics of form. This is the reason why, with bulthaup, you can create living spaces that stretch beyond the kitchen area. Visit the core showroom, where our kitchen specialists will custom design your bulthaup kitchen.

core Valley Road | bkr9085 B’Kara | T. +356 21443449 |

editor’s letter HW

This issue, I’m going to borrow Architect Matthew J. Mercieca’s words on renovation from his article in issue 55: ‘Things and places could just lie in disrepair for decades: motionless and decaying. As they lie there, taking on unwelcome intruders, environmental attack and corrosion, they long for somebody to re-establish a need to use them. Inanimate objects may not really be just that. They interact with each other and us to give us an experience. But it takes time, effort and investment to bring about a force of transformation over these objects. This force of change is something that takes courage to grapple with. Our urban fabric requires evermore an effective force with the right skills to bring about the change we all require to live better. In relation to these skills, time is a particular variable. Projects can have definitive targets and take a very short time, and others may be more indefinite requiring their own time. From six weeks to six months to a year or four – the relative timing of a project to the potential lifetime becomes almost indistinguishable.’ This issue features three very different, but all heavily converted homes by those who found this courage to struggle with change in order to live better. An article on project management with information provided by two highly experienced project managers helps us better understand what we may or may not need during a conversion (page 103). In the meantime, it’s undeniably that time of year when we need to start thinking about how we’re going to keep our homes warm for the winter months. ‘Warmth’ on page 052 interviews three professionals to offer answers to get to the bottom of the right solutions for all. An in-depth styling feature brings you an exclusive first glimpse of showroom trends at a glance on page 062. To round off an extensive issue, Joe Vella’s delicious pumpkin recipes on page 098 really usher in the autumn season quite perfectly.

Publisher Marc Spiteri HomeworksMalta HOMEWORKS is published by writeon ltd. every two months on Sundays with an audited circulation of 39,500 copies distributed with The Sunday Times of Malta. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the Publisher is prohibited. All rights reserved. Dates, information and prices quoted are believed to be correct at time of going to press but are subject to change and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions. Neither the editor no publisher accept responsibility for any material submitted, whether photographic or otherwise. While we endeavour to ensure that firms and organisations mentioned are reputable, the editor can give no guarantee that they will fulfil their obligations under all circumstances. © 2012





PRE-PRESS & PRINTING Progress Press Postal Address / E-mail WriteOn Ltd. Airways House, Level 5, High Street, Sliema SLM 1551 Malta

Sales & Marketing ANDREW FARRUGIA +356 2133 9999 +356 9933 2224


COMPETITION Give us your feedback and WIN this fabulous prize THE PERSON SUBMITTING THE MOST INTERESTING IDEA OR CONCEPT WILL RECEIVE THIS ‘LAND’ SMOKE COLOURED HURRICANE LAMP BY HENRY DEAN FROM LOFT, WORTH €85 Send your ideas to: HOMEWORKS Feedback, Level 5, Airways House, High Street, Sliema SLM 1551 or email:

Issue 56




The A&D ISSUE It’s all in the design

MARILYN ATTARD IS THE WINNER OF THE TWO SIX-WATT LED WALL LIGHTS, WORTH €72.34 EACH, COURTESY OF BRIGHTER SOLUTIONS MARILYN WROTE: “Thank you for the interesting subjects you bring up in your issues. The issue on kitchens and the other on bathrooms were of particular interest to me, since I am in the process of renovating my house. The review on the various material and appliances were very useful. I would like to suggest that you offer more information regarding houses of character – ideas and ways of how to turn these lovely old houses into comfortable homes while maintaining their character. I am in the process of redoing my house and one of the biggest challenges I am encountering is that the market mostly caters for contemporary modern furniture and furnishing, thus leaving me with a limited selection. In this regard, I would suggest you explore local furniture makers. It would also be interesting to see a review of different types of wood that can be used for these houses. Information on how to preserve stones and types of flooring that could be used would also be appreciated.” BERNICE FARRUGIA “A big well done for all the ideas, articles and features in this magazine. I absolutely love it, most especially the sections where you give lighting tips. I also really enjoy reading the features written by the interior designers and architects – very insightful indeed! At the moment we are trying to come up with the design for our main bedroom. We both have loads (and loads and loads) of clothes (and I also happen to have a soft spot for shoes and bags) and I really need help with getting tips and ideas as to how one can create as much storage as possible in the main bedroom.” JOHN SPITERI “The ideas we’ve been getting from HOMEWORKS for our home are numerous and varied. Lately we have done our ground floor in parquet. We would like some advice and ideas on how to keep it dust free, clean and shiny as possible.”

HOMEWORKS NEEDS YOU! Readers are invited to submit interesting photographs and a brief description of their homes, which may be distinct in their architectural design. Of particular interest are homes that offer outstanding elements of both interior and exterior living spaces. HOMEWORKS will select the best submissions for future features. Send a photo and information to the attention of: The Editor, Writeon Ltd., Airways House, Level 5, HIgh Street, Sliema SLM 1551 or (photos will not be returned)


Did you know that you can view back issues of HOMEWORKS on our facebook page? Every month we’re updating our facebook catalogue, bringing you those back issues you may have missed out on. Go to facebook and search ‘HomeworksMalta’. There are also great prizes to be won every month!


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LOVE Farrugia Lighting & Interiors introduces LOVE by Mantra – a new collection of masterfully handcrafted glass.


AZULEJ BY MUTINA The new Azulej tile collection, designed by Patricia Urquiola for Mutina was launched at the Salone del Mobile with production commencing this month. The tile is reminiscent of the ancient handcrafted majolica, made of hydraulic cement. This tradition – revised with a contemporary look – is serially realised in a 20cm x 20cm format. Find Mutina tiles at FLOW.

NEW IKAT RUGS The Rug Gallery has just launched a new collection of Ikat rugs. The rugs from this modern range are made of hand-spun silk and wool in clever, compelling colour palettes; each pattern unique with the local charm and imagination of weavers from villages around the world.

New to Bathroom Design, DOCKS - Cement is reinterpreted by ABK with its own style and enriched through a deep search to offer brand new and original decorative solutions. The chromatic range is composed of six neutral and complementary tones, extremely versatile and in two different surface finishes.

MASCA KITCHEN COLLECTION The new Masca kitchen collection by Aran Cucine at Ideacasa has a contemporary design with a combination of refinement and performance. The white glossy finish adds brightness to the home, and Ideacasa offers over 230 kitchen finishes and colours, as well as a variety of multiple storage solutions – all topped off with a five-year guarantee.

ALEXANDER The Alexander Sofa is the latest sofa now available at Bond’s. Its modularity allows adaptability to fit into different spaces. Find it in leather, fabric and microfibre, with all cushions removable and washable. 015

Exceptional Kitchens from Joinwell

Visit our showroom during the last few days of our exceptional Kitchen Season this October and see our new range of superb kitchens all at 25% off the sale price. Whether you want economy or luxury, we have the right kitchen at the right price for you. Don’t miss it!

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Now available at B4 Group is ‘Open’ – a new series of modern bedrooms by Egelasta Spain. The range offers great designs in an endless choice of combinations and finishes.

Radar is the new Piquattro sofa that is now on display at Carmelo Delia. Available in different sizes and materials, new colours have just been introduced to the Piquattro collection.



In practice since 2002, m+design is a multi-disciplinary design team encompassing Architecture, Design, Interior Design, Development and Lighting Design. This month, m+design celebrates the launch of their new website,, displaying an expose of their latest projects, some of which have already been featured in HOMEWORKS.

The new Limited Edition customised luxury carpets are now available at LOFT. A large array of textiles, textures, colours and sizes can be chosen. Think wool, bamboo, jute, linen, skins and fitted carpets.


ALL THAT IN LED The all-new Orluna QUAD50 Classic from Hydrolectric is the LED down lighting that’s suitable for general lighting, replacing the 50W halogen in areas where a warm light is desired. The patented mixing chamber within the QUAD50 assures that there is no dazzling or ‘brightness’ associated with inferior LED products.

Spot On Supplies have recently added modern Italian mirror lights by Linea Light Group to their bathroom lights collection. They’re suitable for moist areas and are available in different finished high quality chrome and stainless steel. They’re also found with either energy saving or eco halogen lamps.




Ge t bu fro a â‚Ź yin m 10 g a Big 0 v P B ou m iqu en che on at in r th tro ter red of So ioi ee Oc fa rs m tob du wh ab er rin en le gt he


Piquattro introduces their NEW sofa collection, boasting functionality, style and durability. Come to view the fabulous new range at the Carmelo Delia showroom in Valley Road, Birkirkara.

the home of luxury living Valley Road, Birkirkara Tel: 2147 2882 Email: Part of Big Bon Group


Don’t miss the Christmas

2012 with

Christmas 2012Present! The Perfect Gift 2012 Guide Christmas h d wit s e h s i Publ day Time un The S alta on of M 4th




Enjoy giving even more by finding that perfect gift! 100’s of great Christmas gift ideas for the home! The annual A-Z shopping guide brings you the latest gift and Christmas decoration ideas available and saves you the hard work of doing the searching. If you’re an advertiser and would like to be included in the Gift Guide 2012, contact our Sales Department on 2133 9999, 9933 2244 or Email


There’s a faer for every reason


the home of luxury living Valley Road, Birkirkara Tel: 2388 9200 Email:

There are literally hundreds of combinations of FAER bedrooms! Whether it’s sportive football, basketball, car racing, roller blading or just being in the clouds, FAER offer an extensive range of bedrooms & spare bedrooms, all made to measure with unlimited combinations. The safety features, quality of finish and the choice of materials has made FAER Malta’s favourite brand for bedrooms. Come view the extensive FAER range today!

Part of Big Bon Group



SPOT MAGIC STOOL FOR BOSS DESIGN Designed by David Fox, the Magic stool allows users the versatility of being creative to experiment with colour or to opt for a more traditional and sophisticated look.

Last month, london design week marked its 10th anniversary. homeworks catches some highlights

LUSTRE BY TOM DIXON London Design Week just wouldn’t be the same without British Designer Tom Dixon launching something new. The stoneware pendant lights collection ‘Lustre’ is made using a secret glaze containing minerals and precious metals to give a striking iridescent sheen.

BOLON & MISSONI Swedish design met legendary Italian fashion in the venture between Bolon and Missoni to unveil the latest collection of brilliantly coloured, “uplifting and energizing” woven floors.

SERVOMUTO MIMICRY CHAIR BY NENDO SODASTREAM SOURCE BY YVES BÉHAR SodaStream has just partnered with renowned designer Yves Béhar to create the new soda maker, which includes a carbonating bottle that easily locks into place with a single-push motion. Powered by a CO2 canister, the refined mechanics of SodaStream Source make the entire top surface responsive to touch, and the strength of carbonation is visible through an LED display, providing instant, visual feedback to the user.

Japanese design studio nendo conceived a collection of ‘mimicry chairs’ composed of pressed and punched metal and then lacquered white to give it a ghost-like aesthetic. The project’s philosophy was generated through reinterpreting and multiplying a single white chair in 10 different ways, where the series then appeared in 10 varying locations throughout the V&A Victoria & Albert Museum during London Design Week.

Adorned with unexpected fabrics and prints, these handcrafted Italian lampshades break the mould. Graphic designer Alessandro Poli and architect Francesca De Giogi, who together form Servomuto, are inspired by vintage form, drawing from their own archive of old lamps, dusty chandeliers and lamp covers from ‘grandmother’s house’, dating back over 50 years.





THE WATERPEBBLE Place this small pebble-like device in the shower next to the plug and it checks how much water is going down the plug hole. It’s designed to raise awareness of water consumption by monitoring how much water is used in the shower. It memorises the first shower as a benchmark, then gradually sets about reducing the amount of water the user consumes by fractionally reducing the shower time. It does this via a series of traffic lights flashing from green upon start, to amber halfway through and finally red when it’s time to get out.

ATOMIC CLOCK CATCH THE RAIN Brilliant idea, especially for the rainy season. If you have plastic bottles lurking around, why not put them to good use? The Petal Drops Rain Catcher is great for those who don’t have a big garden or much space, but still want to collect rainwater.

The H2O Atomic Clock uses the latest long life H2O technology to power this radio controlled multifunctional clock. Add water to the cell to activate, and then the energy to run the clock is free. It will automatically pick up the time signal every day, so the clock always displays the most accurate time available on the planet. Integrated into the Atomic clock are an alarm, thermometer and calendar.



Hülsta has been nominated for the Blue Angel, part of the German Sustainability Award 2012. The important distinction is recognition of their longstanding commitment towards eco-awareness and sustainability.

When it comes to cleaning, chemicals such as bleach and ammonia are likely to be the first to spring to mind. While Method’s products don’t scream ‘green’ (no cardboard, earth tones or green logo announcing the presence of an environmentally friendly brand), they certainly are. Their detergents, soaps and cleaners are brightly coloured, and boast slick design and elegant packaging. Cleaning isn’t typically regarded as an indulgent experience, but with ranges like the Orla Kiely line, cleaning just got stylish.


Kitchen model WAY


SPACES This issue features three very different, but all heavily converted homes by homeowners who found the courage to struggle with change in order to live better. We begin with ‘The Happy House’ on page 028 – a family home in Lija, which was completely converted by a home-loving couple in order to create a cheerful and highly suitable house to function ideally for them. The next home featured was conceived in response to tight site constraints and rigid planning regulations. Architecture Project revived the noble historic prototype in the form of a twisting double spiral staircase to provide access to the various levels of the refurbished historical Valletta property (page 036). Interior Designer and Project Manager Martin Camilleri took on an enormous renovation to achieve the homeowner’s seemingly simple request – lots of light, lots of space and the largest library possible (page 044).



THE Conceived in response to tight site constraints and rigid planning regulations, a noble historic prototype is revived by Architecture Project in the form of a twisting double spiral staircase to provide access to the various levels of this refurbished historical Valletta property Words: Alberto Miceli-Farrugia Photography: Tonio Lombardi / Staircase by David Pisani - Metropolis Architects: Architecture Project (AP) Interior Design: Marisa O’Cock (Farrugia Investments Ltd) and Architecture Project Styling: The HOMEWORKS Team with One Two One Interiors



To avoid excessive circulation space, the architects studied the idea of two intertwined staircases, looking to precedents such as the grand double spiral at the Vatican Museums, and the 16th century double-helix staircase at Chateau Chambord on the Loire where the staircase permitted the regent to circulate through his property without encountering his servants or guests. This Valletta project was awarded a prestigious first place in the Creative Re-use category at the Inside Festival in Barcelona in November 2011, where it competed against several projects from around the globe



The project was awarded a prestigious first place in the Creative Re-use category at the Inside Festival in Barcelona...

Multiple doors to the terrace reinterpret the traditional multi-layered Maltese windows, inserted into solid masonry walls



e all know St Barbara Bastion, Valletta, as a desirable and spectacular location, much sought after not only as a fabulous location for a city residence, but also as an address of repute for several service enterprises. Constructed as part of the original fortifications of the planned military city, that complex living war machine built by the Knights, St Barbara Bastion was initially no more than an advantageously sited gun-platform guarding the city’s harbour front, reserved exclusively for military purposes and inaccessible to the ordinary citizen.


As the threat of invasion faded over the years, so was Valletta transformed in tune with the changing role the Knights played in the Mediterranean. The whole city reinvented itself. From an inwardly focused military structure that gave its back to the outside world, it changed face, became less defenceoriented, more open and cosmopolitan, and it opened up to the growing commerce and international trade in the harbour waters and shores below its walls. Even the city’s buildings became less utilitarian and more ornate as the town spilled over the walls and onto the waterfront. The walls themselves also contributed to this transformation. They were slowly turned over to civic use, converted into gardens and places of leisure for the enjoyment of the residents of the town. St Barbara Bastion meanwhile was integrated into the well-developed street pattern of the 17th century town. Many of the earlier properties along the street, desirable even then for their vantage point over the harbour, were, not surprisingly, originally commissioned by grandmasters and other high ranking knights; in many ways, from its earliest days, the destiny of St Barbara Bastion as a noble quarter of town was sealed. This prominent property, recently refurbished by Architecture Project, extends right through the block. From the rear it is barely recognisable; with a very utilitarian facade to what were once wine vaults dating from the late 16th century. On the opposite side, a five-metre wide strip with an elaborate façade was added to the front facing the harbour at the beginning of the 17th century when the bastion was handed over to the town. The top floor was added to the property in the early second half of the 19th century. The project called for the complete restoration of the property and its conversion into two sets of offices with an apartment above. Planning restrictions dictated the provision of two sets of stairs and lifts to provide separate access to the apartment from that to the offices. This placed considerable pressure on the limited space behind the harbour façade, the only area of the site that meets the street, which however was also the most valuable portion of the property. Naturally, the brief requested as much office space opening onto the harbour views as possible.



Entirely open plan, the different zones are established through various ceiling heights. Neutral colours extend the flood of light flowing in from the large windows. Below: Vintage inspired furniture amidst a backdrop of minimal and neutral. All kitchen utensils and accessories are hidden behind the large wall panels

To avoid excessive circulation space, the architects studied the idea of two intertwined staircases, looking to precedents such as the grand double spiral at the Vatican Museums, and the 16th century double-helix staircase at Chateau Chambord on the Loire built by Francis I (and supposedly inspired by Leonardo da Vinci), where the staircase permitted the regent to circulate through his property without encountering his servants or guests. In the somewhat more restricted confines of the property on St Barbara Bastion, a common first flight of stairs leads from the entrance and reception up to a landing above the third party wine vaults. The route then splits into two; each staircase follows the other at the lower levels, with the residential stair then proceeding to the apartment above and onward to a ‘secret’ chamber tucked in below the roof. The twisting stair structure is fully draped in a thin dark walnut cladding, the residential stair enclosed, as it transits the volume occupied by the offices, but opening up to the space as it climbs towards the roof. The staircase is evidently a moment of spatial transition and orientation from the

harsh, hot outdoors through the dimly-lit tight circulation space and up to the well-lit apartment at roof level. It provides for differing experiences and moments of rest along its length, in the tradition of the picturesque; a contemporary ‘promenade architectural’. As was the case at Chambord, the residents of the apartment access their floor without disturbance from the office workers, yet at the same time are permitted glimpses of the spaces below, and because the stairs are less brightly illuminated than the surrounding rooms, they may look out without being seen. Within the stair void, the dark walnut tempers the strong light outside. In the office spaces, though, daylight is introduced through the front south facing windows, settling on the darker clad rear walls, a condition reflected in the marble paving on the ground floor, where a traditional paving design is broken up by the playful intervention of light which, as with a breeze, carelessly disperses the individual pieces of the pattern. The combination of dark wood and light stone floors is continued through the other levels and into the more open spaces towards the rear of the block. 033


Above and below: All areas of the apartment were designed to enjoy access to the view. A block of clear glass is built into the bedroom walls to allow access to the view when sitting up in bed

In the penthouse apartment within the new roof level extension, a large living space on the front opens onto a terrace and the harbour below, with the more private rooms at the rear, facing onto East Street. Its faรงades include doors to the terraces, which reinterpret the traditional multi-layered Maltese windows, inserted reassuringly into solid masonry walls. 034

The project was awarded a prestigious first place in the Creative Re-use category at the Inside Festival in Barcelona in November 2011, where it competed against several projects from around the globe.






These days, more and more interior and architectural designers are also taking on the role of Project Manager when undertaking a conversion in order to achieve a finer overall result. Martin Camilleri is one such interior designer, taking on an enormous renovation to achieve the homeowner’s seemingly simple request - lots of light, lots of space and the largest library possible Interior Designer & Project Manager: Martin Camilleri Photography: Raimondo Di Egidio Words: Elisabeth Cardona Styling: HOMEWORKS Team with Floreal Home

he farmhouse was habitable just before Interior Designer Martin Camilleri and his team started work. The designer’s initial impression when inspecting and surveying the site was that all was not well, particularly with the basic infrastructure and services. Although the house looked good aesthetically at first glance, none of the systems seemed to be working properly.


The homeowners had collaborated on projects with Martin previously, which meant that the communication and understanding came easily. Martin, “it enabled me to work in a relaxed manner, which is so important to achieve optimal results.” As soon as the new owners acquired the premises, Martin got to work immediately. The first step was to draft a design plan of the necessary masonry alterations needed to create the envisaged look and feel of the space. The designs were tweaked until together, the homeowners and Martin formulated the basic layout plan in order to be in a position to contract the work. The main entrance was restored to its original splendour. This proved a difficult task, as the team had to be extra careful not to damage any stone features and any of the 300 year-old structure.



Walnut was chosen for the balcony and railings, while mahogany was used for the bookcases. The designer didn’t want to support the balcony with vertical wooden columns, so the steel support had to be carefully planned in a precise way so that the carpentry would fit perfectly when installed. The centre metal pivot alone is covered by seventeen pieces of wood, cut in a specific way to grip together 038


One of the main requests from the homeowners was that they wanted a substantial, Victorian-style prominent library. Martin went about positioning the library to become the focal point of the house – in the largest room, which overlooks the garden. As the room was of considerable height, a balcony style library was possible. “Having previously worked on this type of era furniture, I commissioned a master carpenter to help me achieve the very high standard of craftsmanship that was needed. Walnut was preferred for the balcony and railings, while mahogany was used for the bookcases. I didn’t want to support the balcony with vertical wooden columns, so the steel support had to be carefully planned in a precise way so that the carpentry would fit perfectly when installed. When it came to the staircase, there were a lot of elements needed to get it the way we wanted. For instance, the centre metal pivot alone is covered by seventeen pieces of wood, cut in a specific way to grip together.”



Era a Pennello & Marmorino ks Era a Pennello and Marmorino ks are lime-based paints containing top quality Italian marble powders suitable for interiors and exteriors. These products are most commonly specified in restoration projects of historic buildings. Their macroporous film make them among the most suitable coatings for use on surfaces prone to dampness such as stone walls typically found in town houses and houses of character. Era a Pennello and Marmorino ks are available in a range of contemporary tintable colours while you wait at either the Colours & more Paint Centre in Swatar or The Homemate Home Impovement Centre in Imriehel.

For trade enquiries, kindly contact MacMed Limited on telephone number 2182 4101 or at


Modern commodities were incorporated in the bedroom for the comfort factor, such as heated floors, air conditioning, television, light fittings, and the en suite bathroom

Martin wanted to make use of as much natural light as possible. The three large apertures in the main sitting room achieve this, complete with a lovely open view of the substantial pool and garden area. When designing, Martin strived hard to leave the farmhouse true to its originality, but had a dilemma when it came to the kitchen area. “In the end we opted for a modern looking kitchen as opposed to a rustic one, as it offers a lot more flexibility and in turn, more comfort.�

A modern kitchen was chosen over a rustic one for the reason that it offers more flexibility and in turn, more comfort

The choice of fabrics, colours and other materials in the master bedroom were made to create an early 19th century style. Modern commodities were also incorporated for the comfort factor, such as heated floors, air conditioning, television, light fittings, and the en suite bathroom. 041


Martin Camilleri, “The homeowners are now living comfortably in their very tailored, customised home. Being assigned with the complete design, as well as the responsibility of the project management and co-ordination of the day-to-day organisation, it’s a lot easier to achieve a more precise end result. When the designer has control of the execution, it better reflects the true essence of the original idea envisaged. This is even more so when the original idea continually evolves either by enforced parameters or by effecting spontaneous changes. This, coupled with a great team of contractors makes for a superior outcome, ensuring that the homeowners get what they really want�.


Opposite Ta’ Xbiex Yacht Marina Blue Harbour Business Centre Ta’ Xbiex TXB 1043 +356 21 324 990


The formal sitting room, which leads on to the more casual television room. The back garden with pool can be seen clearly from here, as large sliding glass doors allow for an uninterrupted view



THE HAPPY HOUSE This home-loving couple embarked on a complete conversion to create a cheerful and functional family home in Lija

Architects: _spacestudio Photography: Alan Carville Words: Elisabeth Cardona Styling: The HOMEWORKS Team with Calamatta Landscapes, Next Home and One Two One Interiors



“ When I finally walked in for the first time, it just felt good......’’

The ample use of dark wood and stone juxtaposed against the contemporary lines and materials, such as steel and glass create a balanced fusion of old and new



The décor throughout is a mixture of old with new

his is a cheerful family. Upon greeting, the lady of the house has one of her daughters propped up on her hip and is holding the small hand of the other. They are seriously cute and she is positively glowing. The immediate impression: this is a happy home.


It took a while to get it this way. Previously living in a sea view apartment in St. Julian’s, it took the homeowners about a year to find the Lija property. Location was a priority for them, as well as a garden, regardless if it was to be a townhouse or a house of character. The homeowner says, “To be honest, it was becoming very difficult to find the right place at the budget we had available, so at times we even considered just a plot if the size, price and location were right, but we never found this. However, we came close to buying a house of character three different times. It was only this type of house that had the potential to be converted into a comfortable and practical home for us. “My husband saw this house first and to be totally honest, he just fell in love with it and put in an offer right away. He originally didn’t want me to see it because he knew I would just fall in love with it. He was worried that if it fell through, we would both be very disappointed. He did take photographs though, and when I saw them I knew this house was the one. When I finally walked in for the first time, it just felt good. We both love property and we knew that even though there was a lot of work to be done, it could be converted into what we wanted.”   The couple embarked on converting all the old parts to an open plan layout and rebuilt the rooms that had collapsed. They commissioned architects _spacestudio to take care of the interior and exterior structural works, as well as the exterior design. 047


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The antique dining table with classical chairs juxtaposed against the modern and convenient kitchen. A mixture of stone, wood, stainless steel and lacquer work well together

The entrance to the house leads through a small courtyard, which sports large woodframed windows reminiscent of picture frames that allow an abundance of light to spill into the space. Upon entering the house, a lovely chunky wooden block staircase hints at different spaces, perspectives and angles. The homeowner states that it was this staircase that was the biggest headache throughout the conversion, as it was the last thing to be installed and due to its weight and awkwardness, it was a feat to fix on site. On the lower level, the formal sitting room spills on to the more casual television room, which is one of the areas where the children hang out and play. The back garden with pool can be seen clearly from here, as large sliding glass doors allow for an uninterrupted view. This space leads on to the open plan dining and kitchen area, which makes entertaining easy. A small bar overlooks the garden in this area, which is great for the children to colour or do their homework while a watchful eye can be kept on them. The small bar in the open plan dining/kitchen area, which is ideal for the children to colour or do their homework while a watchful eye can be kept over them 049


Master bedroom with ensuite bathroom that’s divided by a sizable walk-in wardrobe

Storage space has been thought of and worked into the design throughout, such as the compartment above the children’s bathroom ceiling

Upstairs, the comfortably sized bedrooms are accessed by a corridor that overlooks the entrance courtyard, which again helps bring in a lot of light.

contemporary lines and materials, such as steel and glass create a balanced fusion of old and new. “We’re very happy with our decision to go this way – both structurally and décor-wise.”

Storage space has been thought of and worked into the design throughout, such as the compartment above the children’s bathroom ceiling, which is ideal for storing items to keep the room clutter-free.

The couple’s two daughters love the house, interacting with each space. “To them, this is a home where they play, have friends over, enjoy the courtyard in winter and the garden in spring and summer, and eventually the place to sleep tranquilly. This house definitely suits our lifestyle.”

The ample use of dark wood and stone juxtaposed against the


S&S Bathrooms Ltd, Mosta road, Lija LJA 9012  T: +356 2141 2222, F: +356 2141 0710 M: +356 9921 2120, W:




“The best rugs are always handmade, beautifully designed and made with the best quality wool. It starts with the wool.�

Asan Jade rug by Studio Collection for The Rug Company

The long summers we experience in Malta can prove deceiving when it comes to the amount of warmth needed in the home throughout the winter months. We tend to forget how cold interiors can get due to the high humidity. As with most things, there are two ways to deal with it: prevention or cure. Cures can make a big difference to fighting the cold, but while preventive measures are more of an investment in the beginning, they are far more effective in the end. HOMEWORKS asks the experts to offer advice on their relevant aspects to keeping the home warm. Chris Sharp at The Rug Company tells us how to distinguish a good quality rug from an inferior one, and why that quality is so important. Tonio Sant at Starfires takes us through the pros and cons of different heater types, while Roger Camilleri at Klimaflo answers questions about underfloor heating 053

Lighting | Sofas | Furniture | Accessories

Your Lifestyle‌ Your Choice The largest selection of lighting, furniture, sofas & accessories. A huge choice to suit all tastes & budgets. A T F E

Dun Karm Xerri Street, Iklin. +356 2141 9111 +356 2148 5126

Fretwork rug by Emily Todhunter for The Rug Company



Interview with Chris Sharp, CEO and Co-Founder, The Rug Company

Q There are so many different rug designs and colours to choose from that it’s a little daunting to commit to something that’s going to take up such a large amount of space and that’s going to stay for a substantial amount of time. Are their criteria that you recommend when selecting a rug? A You’re absolutely right about the substantial amount of time; a quality rug should last a couple of hundred years! It’s important to try rugs at home before you commit to your choice. It’s for this reason that we actually offer a service whereby we’re happy to bring any number of rugs to your home and are very pleased to help with opinion of it’s wanted. The ideal combination is to find a rug you love, which makes the intended space feel and look great.   A rug transforms a room and can be used to define spaces, bring a room together, improve the quality of the acoustics, add colour or blend with a scheme.     Q What visible signs indicate that a rug is good quality?  A Like everything in life it’s easy to make things cheaper and quicker by taking short cuts, using inferior design, techniques and materials. We’ve spent the last fifteen years getting a reputation for quality design and quality handmade production.

There are obviously times when an inexpensive rug serves a great purpose. There are times when you need something for a limited amount of time or in a space, which is not so important. However, if you want a quality piece and you’re paying good money, you want to know that it’s the real deal.  The best rugs are always handmade, beautifully designed and use the best quality wool. It starts with the wool. The best wool comes from high altitudes; places where the wool is rich in lanolin (a natural oil), which acts as a protection for the rug’s lifetime and keeps it incredibly soft. Hand spinning the wool is the best way to protect it and keep its original qualities. It’s not easy to design anything well and the best designers are recognised because they are inspired. To hand knot the average rug takes four months and as many as twenty people involved in its production. Doing it properly is worth the time and effort.  The best way to ensure you know what you’re buying is to ask questions. The easiest way to check if a rug is handmade is to look for the individual knots on the back of the rug. The wool should not feel dry.  You can’t make a quality rug cheaply, so if it’s cheap it’s this way for a reason.




Crown’s Breatheasy Virtually Odour Free Paint has no lingering smell, so you can get back in your room in no time. Crown paints cover more surface area per litre than most other paints do, while retaining excellent opacity. That means you get more for less. Available in 16 trendy colours, white and magnolia. Crown Paints. British Quality you will always remember, at a low price you will never forget.

Tel (+356) 21824101


Weaving: The weaver starts at one end, tying a knot around a pair of warp threads and the metal rod, pulling them tight and repeating the process until the end of the line is reached or the colour needs to be changed

Q Why do homeowners need to invest in a quality rug? What are the advantages to a superior quality one? A Quality lasts. And it’s not just the quality of the materials, it’s also the quality of the design. When you look back at quality design from, say fifty years ago, the good design has now become valuable and iconic, while the poor design has disappeared. It’s the same as other products; cars, furniture and even clothes. There’s great stuff and inferior stuff. If you can afford to buy the best, it’s an advantage.   Q They say it takes children’s small, nimble fingers to make intricately designed rugs. Is it true that the designs can’t be as intricate without using child labour? 

Washing: The rugs are washed on both sides: soap and water are squeezed through the pile with wooden paddles or “pharwa”

A This is not true. Children do not have the proper skill or experience to weave rugs. The use of children to weave rugs is completely unacceptable and no reputable company would allow it. The best way to ensure that children are not involved in the weaving process is to control the production and we have gone to great lengths to do just that. We are also signed up with an organisation called GoodWeave (, which makes random unannounced visits to our weaving houses to make sure that there are no bad practises while we are not there ourselves. Our rugs carry a certificate certifying that they have been made without the use of child labour.   Q What determines the price of a rug?  A The price is determined by the intricacy of the knotting, the quality and type of the materials. The use of silk will increase the price. The name of the designer will also affect the price. If a rug has been designed by a well-known designer it will appreciate in value with time.   Q Will all rugs fade over time?  A We all fade with time! Rugs will only fade if they are in direct sunlight. It’s a good idea to avoid direct sunlight on your rugs and if it is unavoidable, it’s sensible to turn them around every few months to ensure that any fading is even.      What is meant by the “dark side” and “light side” of a rug?

Winding: The spun wool is twisted into skeins, taken back to the monastery and then weighed again before being trucked to Kathmandu for dyeing, drying and winding into balls, ready for the final transformation

When a rug is hand knotted, the pile falls in one direction. When you look into the pile, the direction of the pile falling towards you, it will look darker; and when you look with the fall of the pile going away from you it will look lighter.



WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT HEATERS Interview with Tonio Sant, Starfires

Q What type of heater is the most cost effective one? A Wood-burning models. Q What is the biggest advantage and disadvantage of gas heaters? A The advantages are that they can be lit simply by pressing a switch, the heat emitted is constant, the choice of models are available with or without a chimney, which means that those without a chimney can be placed anywhere.   The disadvantages are that the flame always looks the same. Also, the gas bottles are too heavy for some people to handle. Moreover, lately gas bottle prices have gone up.    Q What are the biggest advantages and disadvantages of electric heaters?

State of the art wall-mounted flueless gas LPG fire-heaters, which incorporate the latest in gas fire technology and don’t need a chimney to operate. Find the Scandium Flueless Glas LPG at Viroc Int’l Ltd The simple clean lines and soft curved glass of the Radium Flueless Gas LPG convey an understated minimalism that blends well into a living space, offering a primary design focus with distinctive style. Find them at Viroc Int’l Ltd EDILKAMIN pellet burning wall mounted stoves for limited space with high output. These stoves channel 100% of warm air produced and are just 26cm deep. Find them at Il Camino

A The advantages are that they can be lit simply by pressing a switch, they can be put anywhere in the house, and the more quality models have a very realistic flame.   The disadvantages are they consume a considerable amount of electricity, just for a 2kw output. Also, the flame can appear very artificial.   Q What are the biggest advantages and disadvantages of fireplaces? A The advantages are that there is a wide choice of the heating power needed for one’s residence. Their operation is extremely efficient; nowadays more than 73 percent. The nice flame and the crackling sound oozes quality. The fireplace looks good, as well as giving the surroundings more prestige.   The disadvantages of fireplaces is that they need to be cleaned (vacuumed, really) periodically. Also, initially the fireplace requires more construction than any other type of heating.



WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW UNDERFLOOR HEATING Interview with Roger Camilleri, Kimaflo

Underfloor heating can work successfully with all floor coverings, although some are better at transferring heat than others. The best floor coverings to use are hard surfaces, such as stone and ceramic tile, as they have the least resistance and transfer heat effectively

Q Why is underfloor heating (UFH) more efficient than other types of heating? A Radiators or other stand-alone heaters rapidly heat the area immediately around them, with the heat rising and slowly distributing around the rest of the room. An underfloor system heats a larger surface area from the floor upwards at a lower temperature, resulting in a more consistent and comfortable temperature. Q Are all floors suitable for UFH? A UFH can work successfully with all floor coverings – however,s some are better at transferring heat than others. The best floor coverings for use with UFH are hard surfaces, such as stone and ceramic tile, as they have the least resistance and transfer heat effectively. Where highly resistant coverings like carpet or parquet are to be fitted, the system design must factor in the extra heat output that will be needed. Q What is the maximum permitted floor temperature for UFH for given surface finishes? A Independent tests reveal that the most acceptable indoor climate is one in which the floor temperature ranges between 19-29°C and the air temperature at head level ranges between 20 and 24°C. 060

Q Do you need to put UFH in every room? A This is entirely up to the client; we have installed UFH in all types of rooms ranging from kitchens, living rooms, open plan areas and even around indoor pools. Q Once underfloor heating is installed, is any other heating needed? A A good quality heat source provider is capable of heating your UFH and will also take care of all your domestic hot water. This heat source can either be a heat pump (which is extremely economical) or a gas boiler. Both sources can have solar panels connected to assist in the heat provided. Q Can UFH be reversed to cool in summer?

A Some heat sources can also provide cooling at the click of a button. With a good quality system, you can maintain pleasant temperatures all year round; heating in winter and cooling in summer with just one system. Q Is a new boiler needed for UFH? A The low amount of heat needed by UFH makes it ideal for use with a modern

condensing boiler. However, in most cases, you will not need to change your boiler. Q How much disruption is caused installing UFH? A We normally install UFH in new houses or houses that are being renovated. It cannot be installed in habitable places, as works involved will not allow this. People who are interested in investing in this kind of heating need to seek professional advice for the best product and also workmanship. Q Can the temperature of UFH be controlled? A Yes – UFH systems use thermostats, just like conventional heating systems. Rooms can be independently controlled and heated to different levels as required. Q How long will UFH take to warm up? A Initially from cold it will take a few hours to heat up. It’s at its most efficient if left on 24 hours a day using room thermostats to control the comfort levels in each space or zone. Timers and programmers allow the user to choose when the heating is on or off or when to tell the system to reduce the average temperature overnight. This saves energy and gives a faster up-time the following morning.

a truly italian design

CREATIVE LIGHTING DESIGN 102, Palm Street, Paola PLA1414 | Tel: 21668880 | Mob: 79817777 | E-mail: Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 9.00hrs to 19.00hrs | Saturdays: 9.00hrs to 13.00hrs

Exc usive G impse Want to see the local interior trends from all the leading showrooms this season? HOMEWORKS presents an exclusive glimpse of what’s hot this autumn Photography: Alan Carville Styling: The HOMEWORKS team with: BoConcept, Carmelo Delia, Fino, Ideacasa, Kartell by onepercent Group, LOFT, Petrolea, Project Life by Vella Falzon, R Living, SatarianoHome,The Atrium, The Rug Gallery Backdrop boxes: Q-UBES Collection by Rolf Sachs for Linley






13 1. The Rug Gallery 2.The Atrium 3. Ideacasa 4. Petrolea 5. SatarianoHome 6. LOFT 7. Carmelo Delia 8. Kartell by onepercent Group 9.-10. Ideacasa 11. Project Life by Vella Falzon 12. BoConcept 13. Kartell by onepercent Group 14. Fino 15. R Living 16. The Atrium




furniture GUIDE HW











As with each season, BoConcept keeps it simple. Their evercustomised and coordinated furniture seems effortless this autumn, with the colour jade making an appearance, amongst strong neutrals. A new range of quality hand-woven or handknotted rugs break up minimalist settings to give spaces more character

From left: Outrigger floor lamp, light oak with black powder-coated metal shade and legs, €459 Fargo sofa with lounging unit, jade green fabric, €2,695 Highboard by Karim Rashid for BoConcept, white lacquered/ oak veneer, €1,495 Satellite table lamp, black metal with copper colour inside, €379 Menton stackable chair, black-stained oak veneer/matt black lacquered, €119 Tokyo barstool, height adjustable, black-stained oak veneer/brushed steel, €299 London chair in light grey fabric with black-stained oak leg, €199 Charcoal grey lacquered sideboard with black lacquered legs, starting from €1,095 White matt lacquered bookcase, starting from €152 White metal stool, available in various colours, €139 Natural coloured bamboo woven basket, €33 Ottawa chair by Karim Rashid for BoConcept in a light grey fabric with matt black lacquered legs, starting from €419 London chair with armrests, and tan leather/matt black lacquered legs, starting from €359 Imola chair with swivel function and a rust fabric/brushed steel leg – a matching footstool is also available. Starting from €1,595 Ogi chair with swivel function in black leather and brushed steel – starting from €795 Coffee table in a black-stained oak veneer with drawers in light oak veneer, available in two sizes, and a mix of colours and materials, starting from €780 Grey/brown 100% wool and hand-woven tartan rug, starting from €695 Dark grey 100% wool and hand-knotted Patina rug, starting from €1,195

FIND IT all at BoConcept Malta, Triq tal-Balal, San Gwann. Tel: 2137 8011/2. /


Carmelo Delia springs a new style altogether this season, with warm, autumn inspired colours and natural materials. Leathers in different finishes, as well as accessories in tactile materials come together to create a country meets cowboy style

Three-seater Indira model sofa by Piquattro, €1,200 Solid wood Lube stool, €124 Material on the floor: Category 300, colour 3347, article Pegaso

FIND IT all at Carmelo Delia, Triq il-Wied, B’Kara. Tel: 2388 9200. 064

furniture GUIDE HW FINO

This season at Fino brings furniture pieces made of solid and longlasting materials, such as ancient oak. Quirky pieces bring in the fun, and top brands like Ligne Roset bring on the bold and strong glamour

Ploum settee by Ligne Roset, €3,332 Brancusi ancient oak dining table by Estel, €6,360 Italia 150 chair by Colico Design, €143 Somerset Light by Ligne Roset, €503

FIND IT all at Fino, Triq Notabile, Mriehel. Tel: 2549 3000. /


The Ideacasa showroom this season is rife with black, white and red, with quality pieces from the big Italian brands Calligaris and Cattelan Italia, amongst others. A focus on materials and spectacular design have always been part of the Italian design culture, but as the seasons roll on, the attention to them is becoming ever more intense

From left to right: Dorado floor lamp, designed by Andrea Lazzari for Calligaris, €588 SPYDER dining table by Cattelan Italia, €3,525 ANGEL dining chair by Cattelan Italia, €525 each Modern suspended lamp Volans by Calligaris, designed by S.T.C, €443 Nido armchair, designed by Studio 28 for Calligaris, €804 Park extendable dining table by Calligaris, €2,740 MONACO EB Rectangular marble table, designed by Giorgio Cattelan, €3,972 Amy Upholstered Dining Chair, designed by Studio Kronos for Cattelan Italia, €344 each

FIND IT all at Ideacasa, Triq il-Wied, Birkirkara. 065

bathrooms & tiles | shower cubicles | saunas | sofas | solar | air-conditioning | furniture

simple ideas. inspiring design.

Affordable Quality.

tel: 21 440 710 email:

Flamenco collection 200x600, 400x600, 600x600 by Imola Ceramica.

furniture GUIDE HW LOFT

LOFT’s approach this season (its first season, as the new shop in Naxxar only opened recently) is very much about the variety of European brands that they carry; appreciation of nonconformist choices with an ironic and amused approach to shapes, as well as designs strongly characterised by bold colour and clean, fluid forms

Fly Sofa from Vibieffe, starting from €4,940 Tray table from HAY, €235 Tray accessory set from HAY, €60 Side table from Maxdesign, €372 Memory table lamp from Axis 71, €380 Memory XL from Axis 71, €1,483 Verona Chair by LOFT, staring from €360 Industry storage unit by Benjamin Hubert, from Casamania, €3,800 Colour Carpet by Scholten & Baijings from HAY, (measuring 170 x 240cm), €898 Sway tumblers from Refer_Staer, €89, Candles in glass containers starting from €30 Ceylon jars starting from €34 White bamboo jar, €59 Purple hurricane glass, €71 Cushions starting from €28 Boty Mauve throw (acrylic), €33 Brooklyn baby pink mohair and lambs wool throw, €210 ‘La Corrida’ framed print (measuring 54 x 54cm), €153

FIND IT all at LOFT, Triq San Pawl, Naxxar. Tel: 2099 9966.

KARTELL BY ONEPERCENT GROUP New to Malta on such a large scale, Kartell Shop in Shop by onepercent Group offers what Kartell is all about; one of the main interpreters of industrial design. The company’s strategy is based on the material utilisation and new technologies, on quality as the main focus

Louis Ghost Chair, designed by Philippe Stark, 10th anniversary, €190 Series 7 Arne Jacobsen Masters chair, €123 Four Table, available in lacquered steel and 2.5cm thick table top in stratified laminate, €645 FIND IT all at Kartell Shop in Shop by onepercent Group, Triq il-Wied, ta’ l-Imsida. Tel: 2546 5000. 067

furniture GUIDE HW PETROLEA From the left to right, top to bottom: Alessi casserole dishes with two handles, €79 (16cm)/€94 (20cm)

Brandani condiment

set in porcelain with bamboo tray, €19.69 Alessi egg cup with spoon, €21 citrus basket, €119


Cast iron balance

scale with brass pear shape bowl by Victor - available in red, black, blue and green, €125.80

Brandani table lamp, €58.80

Porcelain Regal jug, €14.92


by Foppapedretti for oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, €75.90

SAT Apogeu dinner set for

six by Costa Verde, €556.95

Fondue set

for six by Fondue King, €53.90 six-piece steak knife, €24.50 wooden jewel chest, €10.48 €115

Brendan Brandani

Alessi kettle,

F&D slanting decanter by Pasabahce,


GAT six-cup espresso maker,


Mr. & Mrs. Chin salt & pepper set by

Alessi, €40

Brandani porcelain salad bowl

with bamboo cutting and cutlery, €32.60 ‘Alessandro M’ corkscrew by Alessi, €65 Brandani knife block with five stainless steel knives, €42.89

Petrolea’s products are about living beautifully and functionally at the same time. The products they have chosen this season are a sign of the times and truly make life

easier right now, especially in the kitchen. As one of their largest brands, Alessi ascribes, they provide, “an opportunity for consumers to improve their perception of the world”.

Brandani cookie jar with

sound sensor - available in rooster, cow, cat and kitten models, €50.75


Ollar stone set with wooden stand, €46.14 Brandani chocolate fondue set with 10 pieces and six ceramic forks, €64.99

FIND IT all at Petrolea, Triq il-Wied ta’ L-Imsida, Msida. Tel: 2123 5487 / 2123 4501. /

PROJECT LIFE BY VELLA FALZON Project Life is all about smart solutions for a variety of rooms this season. Lovely wall units dot the showroom, alongside a variety of pieces in the on-trend chartreuse mustard colour

Oltredomo KUMA container table finished in white gloss lacquer measuring 60 x 32cm, with hidden castors for easy handling – optional glass, leather or gloss tops available. Starting at €479. Spar Exential range wall unit measuring 360 x 187 x 56cm with large sliding reflex glass covering for TV/shelving units, open shelving and four high gloss Tortora colour push open cupboard doors, €3,100. Made-In-Italy Projectlife design eco leather sofa with chaise longue and headrests, (measuring 292 x 220 x 94cm), €2,910. Stainless steel floor lamp, €330 FIND IT all at Project Life by Vella Falzon, Triq In-Naxxar, San Gwann. Tel: 2138 6164. / 069

lavish living Sideboard in walnut by Egelasta Spain

Martin Sofa by Delta Salotti Italia

Fgura Tel: 2180 1092 Mosta Tel: 2143 2003


R Living continues to broaden its wardrobe options. The brand they carry is the quality Swiss made Jutzler. This year, the Competence range has been launched with wardrobe fronts that can be mixed and matched to any requirements. Carefully thought-out and

versatile accessory programmes add the special touch to these wardrobes. Clothing can be quickly and neatly stored away, then be retrieved in an instant

FIND IT at R Living, Dawret L-Imriehel, Qormi. Tel: 2149 9699. /


White marble ruler table (50cm), €776 White lacquer Lena Bubble table lamp, €128 White lacquer Lena Bubble floor lamp, €390 White cylindrical lamp shade, €130 Single ivory lambskin rug, €150 Vega vertical stripe fourdrawer chest, €2,396 Isola armchair with side table, €1,808 Magnesium white planter, €165

Delicate materials, fun neutral colours and vintage inspired pieces dominate this season at SatarianoHome. Finally, here it is – an alternative to the ultra modern minimalist furniture pieces that have been dominating showrooms

for so long. Cylindrical shaped table legs covered by round marble table tops juxtaposed against vertical striped wooden customised consoles, makes for an interesting beginning to a new design journey

FIND IT all at SatarianoHome, Triq Marina, Pieta. Tel: 2149 2149. 071

Per la tua Casa italiana scegli Chateau d’Ax










Chateau d’Ax Old Railway Track – Santa Venera – (Malta) - Tel: +356 2144 6411 Orari di apertura: Lunedi a Venerdi 09:30 – 13:00 / 15:00 – 19:00 Sabato: 09:30 – 13:00

Vai su e guarda il filmato con tutte le offerte!

furniture GUIDE HW THE ATRIUM The Atrium’s extensive range of whimsical KARE products are at polar ends of the spectrum from each other, with nostalgia meeting rock star this season. Patchwork upholstery is rife in armchairs and foot stools, as well as on cladding for shelving units. Other patterns are inspired by the mass immigration movement to Ellis Island, New York at the turn of the 19th century with fabrics and covers in the Union Jack or American stars and stripes. Dark leathers, moosehead mounts, old suitcases, Chesterfield-style sofas and chrome accessories mounted for effect further enforce the trend. On the other end of the spectrum, chrome, bright popping colours and eccentric accessories scream rock star. KARE cushion patchwork (45 x 45cm), €13 KARE saloon flowers pendant lamp, €269 KARE Rockstar money bank pig, €17 KARE silver Rockstar chair (64w x 45d x 98hcm), €198 KARE Rockstar mirror (80 x 70cm), €75 KARE Rock black bar lady (120w x 52d x 104hcm), €428 KARE Patchwork cabinet (40w x 30d x 113hcm), €290 FIND IT all at The Atrium, Bypass ta’ l’Mriehel, Mriehel. Tel: 2147 0000. /


This season at The Rug Gallery, it’s all about bold, vivid block colours. Geometrical patterns are engrained within the rugs, giving them textures.

York Lavender, starting from €120 Jazz Charcoal, starting from €495 Dolce Gold & Dolce Teal, starting from €495 Bellagio Teal & Bellagio Green, starting from €450 Jazz Silver & Jazz Taupe, starting from €495 York Purple & Terra, starting from €120

FIND IT all at The Rug Gallery, 11, Ix-Xatt, Ta’ Qui-Si-Sana, Sliema. Tel: 213 34191. 073

shop HW

Internationally renowned fabric and wallpaper house, Zoffany introduces Arden, in association with artist Melissa White. The collection is the most comprehensive to date of designs inspired by the Elizabethan style of the late 16th century. Retroforma, 81, Triq il-Kbira, Sliema. Tel: 2131 2173 / 9955 3581.


shop HW

Birdie Organiser steel mail holder with magnetic base and multi-function hook. The nickel-plated bird also has an embedded magnet beak to hold keys. Price: €28.80. Gifts&More, Level 1, Topline, St. Andrew’s (opposite Luxol). Tel: 2137 2256.

The new streamlined nickel flip with hooks that pull in and out – the perfect wall coat rack for your home or office. Price: €48.80. Gifts&More, Level 1, Topline, St. Andrew’s (opposite Luxol). Tel: 2137 2256.

Made of bent wood, ‘L Conceal’ is the latest floating shelf from Umbra, giving a room that instant contemporary, minimalist look. Once a stack of books is placed, the two metal brackets are hidden. Price: €34.90. Gifts&More, Level 1, Topline, St. Andrew’s (opposite Luxol). Tel: 2137 2256.

JOSEPH JOSEPH are always at the forefront of innovation in kitchen tools. Price: Stretch, €13 / Carousel, €50 / Pepper & salt mill, €18 / Cut & Collect, €20 / Scoot (pizza cutter), €12. Home & Gift Centre, M4 Shopping Complex, Triq il-Linja, Attard. Tel: 2143 6285.


shop HW Cool and sophisticated, Louison is just one of the sensational new Autumn/Winter ranges from carréblanc. A perfect combination of 100% cotton bed linen, embroidered pillow cases and towels to match. Price for a king size duvet cover: €177. carréblanc, Tal-Balal Road, San Gwann. Tel: 2138 8880, 2738 8880, or shop on Facebook: carreblancmalta and go to ‘shop’.

The Little Black Dress is a hanging double sided canvas storage solution for jewellery, beauty items and other life curiosities. Price: €26.50. Gifts&More, Level 1, Topline, St. Andrew’s (opposite Luxol). Tel: 2137 2256.

BRINK&CAMPMAN are unveiling the inspirational 2013 collection enriched with the latest trends and designs in pure new wool and synthetic pile. Discontinued designs are on clearance discount starting from 50%. Price: Upon request. core, Triq Il-Wied (on the way up to Triq Mannarino), B’Kara. Tel: 2144 3449.

The new Premium collection of various voiles and jacquards ideal for curtains, cushions and upholstery. Drapes, Triq In-Naxxar, B’kara. Tel: 2144 2667.

Riotous retro fun with the Display range by carréblanc. Quilt covers available in a single or double size in plain red, orange, blue, turquoise, khaki and fuchsia with colourful pillowcases and cushions to match. Price for a single duvet cover: €72. carréblanc, Tal-Balal Road, San Gwann. Tel: 2138 8880, 2738 8880, or shop on Facebook: carreblancmalta and go to ‘shop’. 079

Not just any cover...

winner 2008 winner 2009





Enjoy your outdoor space all year round with full protection from the sun, rain, cold and wind. Savour your spare time – in your own garden, on your own patio. Weinor endeavours to help you live this valuable time to the full, meeting your requirements every time, and all from one single source.

OUTDOOR SOLUTIONS (a division of AVC Ltd)

relax al fresco


Outdoor Solutions, Msida Valley Road, Birkirkara T: 2099 0009 E: W:

shop HW

Give your plants the home they deserve with handmade pots in a wide variety of colours and styles. Available in two sizes and 14 colours. Find them at Mdina Glass outlets or online, with free delivery throughout Malta & Gozo and a free gift on all online orders of over €25. Price: starting at €20. Mdina Glass. Tel: 2141 5786.

Just one of many unusual and exclusive gifts available at The Drury Collection. Price: €8.95. The Drury Collection, Triq San Luigi, Msida. Tel: 2133 9627.

A large selection of creepy indoor and outdoor Halloween decorations are now available – add a scary atmosphere to your garden this year with these original Halloween decorations. Price: €2.95 each. Piscopo Gardens, Burmarrad. Tel: 2158 3755. / Join Piscopo Gardens on Facebook.

New stylish storage jars in a variety of colours, patterns and finishes. Buy a set of three or five jars and receive a discount of 20% off the total value. Available from Mdina Glass outlets or online, with free delivery throughout Malta & Gozo and a free gift on all online orders of over €25. Price: starting from €20.50. Mdina Glass. Tel: 2141 5786.

A stylish selection of new gift ideas and home accessories, from the elegant to the extravagant, funky, chic and retro. Price: lanterns, €17.95 each. Piscopo Gardens, Burmarrad. Tel: 2158 3755. / www.piscopogardens. com Join Piscopo Gardens on Facebook. 081

shop HW

Enhance the beauty of light in your home office or living space with desk lamps. Price: starting from €56. VCT Ltd, Triq Ponsomby, Mosta. Tel: 2143 2571 / 2143 6186 / 2143 2951.

Brabantia wall fix – 25 metres of drying lines and can be folded neatly away when it’s not in use. Price: €139.99. Finishing Touches, Triq In-Naxxar, Lija. Tel: 2741 8750 / 7941 8750

A varied selection of handmade crystal Latvian centrepieces and bowls. Particularly unique are the mirror bowls, which reflect the colour of the object within – perfect as a gift or to keep. Most colours are in stock now. CABOUXON Luxury, St. Julian’s (opposite Ryan’s). Tel: 2138 5225.        

Enhance the beauty of light in your home office or living space with desk lamps. Price: starting from €56. VCT Ltd, Triq Ponsomby, Mosta. Tel: 2143 2571 / 2143 6186 / 2143 2951.

The Carl Hansen Elbow chair’s seat utilises a special eleven-ply construction, which gives the chair perfect stability and makes extra rungs between the chair’s legs unnecessary. The seat is upholstered in fabric or leather. Price: Upon request. core, Triq Il-Wied (on the way up to Triq Mannarino), B’Kara. Tel: 2144 3449. /

Get the real Italian Espresso experience with the new Lavazza A Modo Mio espresso machine, which is now available in Malta from The Store at P.Cutajar & Co. Ltd. in San Gwann. Price: starting from € 99. Tel: 2144 4364. / 083


Available exclusively at‌

376, High Street, Sta. Venera SVR 1015 Zabbar Road, Fgura FGR 1015 Valletta Road, Mosta MST 9010 186, Naxxar Road, San Gwann SGN 9030 Email:

Tel: 2124 0001 Tel: 2169 1029 Tel: 2143 3975 Tel: 2137 3103

shop HW

The Krups full range of reliable and expert coffee and espresso machines, as well as coffee percolators will make the perfect cup. KRUPS also offers the NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto range of easy to use stylish multi-beverage machines; no mess, no fuss, just great coffee shop quality drinks. Price: starting from €65. A & A Mizzi Ltd. Tel: 2148 8168. /

Contemporary cheese board with built-in cutter. Price: starting from €25. Petrolea Showroom, Triq il-Wied, Msida. Tel: 2123 4501 / 2123 5487. /

With the latest generation of freestanding and integrated washing machines, tumble dryers and washer dryers, Miele combines its legendary quality with an elegant design to achieve an exceptional laundry care system. All Miele washing machines are tested for 20 years use and are covered by a five-year warranty. Forestals Showroom, Mriehel. Tel: 2343 6000.

Hisense (model LTDN50K310XCEU3D) ultra slim design 50” 3D TV inclusive of LED backlight, 2D-3D conversion; Smart Motion Rate (SMR), ultradynamic contrast, DVB-T with HD Tuner, DVB-S2, one common interface HD, 120Hz, 4 HDMI Inputs, Energy Saver, Shutter Glasses and USB Playback. Price: €899. Yal Home & Electronics, 72, Triq L-Emigranti, Naxxar. Tel: 2741 9550 / 9949 6120. /


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Underfloor Heating Systems available in either water or electric systems with up to lifetime warranties. Price: upon request. Clever Homes Ltd, Triq Testaferrata, Ta’Xbiex. Tel: 2132 4473 / 7949 6097. /

Now available at Tower Aluminium is 700˚C heat-resistant fireplace glass – a transparent glass with outstanding features that include high resistance to thermal shock, high mechanical strength, and excellent electrical characteristics. It withstands three times the heat resistance of tempered glass. Tower Aluminium,

All types of garage doors, insulated sectional doors, gate remote control motors, and balcony railings. Kenneth Darmanin. Tel: 9947 4786. /

Sanicube is a corrosion-free plastic hot water storage tank with stainless steel corrugated pipe heat exchangers. It’s a combination of domestic hot water storage tank and flow water heater system with properties that are particularly water hygienic. This tank can also incorporate solar support. Replace your old calorifier – no more rust, no more lime scale – with ROTEX Sanicube. Klimaflo, Triq il-Hgejjeg, San Gwann. Tel: 2701 1118/9 / 9949 5161. 087




UP New at Brighter Solutions is UP by Lucente. The garden has never looked so good with these new ivory polyethylene floor lamps, made with rotational moulding technology for outdoor applications.

VALENCIA The new Pircher Valencia extendable table in Eucalyptus timber from Brands International ensures that its users can enjoy the outdoors and forget about not having enough space for everyone around the table. The table measures 1,500/2,100cm x 90cm x 759(H)cm with a grey aluminium framework, complemented by Valencia white fabric stackable chairs.

MADE AT HOME ‘Made At Home: Vegetables’ by Dick & James Strawbridge proves just how productive we can be all year round, whether we have a tiny urban patch, a dedicated allotment or plenty of space in our own garden. Growing vegetables at home is one of the easiest ways to transform the way you eat. With the kindle book’s stepby-step guides to growing, and dozens of ideas for cooking home produce, tasty dishes like pea and mint risotto, kohlrabi coleslaw, baked sweet potato and goat’s cheese pie can be enjoyed.

AGATHA Freshness meets spontaneity with VONDOM’s new collection AGATHA, by Agatha Ruiz De La Prada, the brand’s first kids’ collection. The characteristic icons of the designer are found in the new collection, with its simple, sweet and refined shapes. A funny, creative and optimistic composition is integrated throughout infantile codes, such as flowers and hearts. Its highly resistant material allows its usage in an outdoor playing area. /

FLOATING BALLS Make your garden pond pop with vivid colour with these new floating balls from Mdina Glass.



All the rage at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show, naturalistic planting schemes draw inspiration from nature itself; observing it, learning from it, and then emulating it with the intended final result to look authentic and ‘wild’



whats Your

Flora Form Words: Melina Scodanibbio


Autumn is a very busy time in the garden, with plenty of chores to be done before the onset of winter. Melina Scodanibbio takes us through them, as well as explores the evolution of planting styles Most autumn garden chores are carried out in September and October, so the post-summer clearing and tidying, hoeing, digging and sowing should be almost over by now. It is in autumn that we plan ahead to ensure a steady display of flowers and supply of vegetables to take us through to next spring, so if this hasn’t been done yet, a large variety of spring flowering annuals can be still be sown until about mid November. Vegetables can also be sown at frequent intervals and should be thinned out and transplanted as soon as they are strong enough. Although in this fast paced world of instant gratification, few of us bother with seeds, probably nothing beats the delight of watching the progress and transformation of a seedling into a fully-grown plant! After the scorching summer heat and before the rains soak the soil and renders it unsuitable for working, this is the ideal season for transplanting and planting. So if planning a new garden, or the revamp of an existing one, we can draw inspiration from different planting trends and fashionable plants or plant combinations. You don’t need to look too far back to notice the evolution of gardening styles and trends, and the loss of popularity of many once widely used plants. The once ubiquitous Araucaria (Norfolk Island pine) or Pittosporum hedge for example, previously a staple of many front gardens, are now frequently snubbed for more appropriate, attractive and yes, fashionable, plants. As tastes have been refined and a more eco friendly mentality consolidated, different planting styles began emerging. These are of course defined by the trend-setting world famous designers and landmark garden shows, such as Chelsea, but nurseries also inevitably promote planting trends by stocking all the ‘in’ plants. At this year’s Chelsea Flower Show naturalistic planting schemes were all the rage – this style, as the name implies, draws inspiration from nature itself.


t. 2133 4191 w. opening hours. monday to saturday 9am-1pm, 4pm-7pm

garden HW

New Perennial style planting, which replaced the traditional scheme of manicured lawns surrounded by mixed borders with an invitation to immerse oneself in the landscape

It observes nature, learns from it, emulates it and – although the final result may look authentic and ‘wild’ – there is actually nothing natural about it. It is as artificial and engineered as any other more traditional styles of gardening. Wild flowers, indigenous plants, even good looking weeds, all find their place in these schemes; a celebration of plant diversity and the beauty of natural landscapes. Apart from being an extremely appealing and attractive planting method, it’s also less taxing for the environment requiring less water, less chemicals and less maintenance.

A naturalistic planting scheme, which draws its inspiration from nature itself

he New Perennial style, made famous by the incredible drifts of ornamental grasses and flowering perennials used by Dutch landscaper Piet Oudolf. The style is an emulation of open fields, wild landscapes and natural habitats

A similar approach is the New Perennial style, which has been extremely popular internationally for about a decade, but has only appeared in Malta in the last few years. This style, made famous by the incredible drifts of ornamental grasses and flowering perennials used by Dutch landscaper Piet Oudolf in his beautiful creations, is again an emulation of open fields, wild landscapes and natural habitats. It radically changed people’s perspective of gardens and replaced the traditional scheme of manicured lawns surrounded by mixed borders with an invitation to immerse oneself in the landscape. One is no longer viewing the plants from the outside, but is walking right through them, as in a field. This style is ideally suited and best appreciated in larger areas, since in smaller gardens the structure tends to be lost resulting in a rather messy effect. In fact, both the above styles, when used in smaller spaces, should be combined with a relatively bold landscaping scheme, which creates a strong frame to the soft, airy and loose planting. As a side note, it should be pointed out that this style does not use species which are indigenous to Malta, and although these grasses are extremely hardy and drought tolerant, they can also be invasive, so their use is not ideal in rural areas.

Trends change in garden styles too; the once ubiquitous Pittosporum hedge, previously a staple of many front gardens, are now frequently traded for more appropriate, attractive and fashionable plants



Minimalist style; block planting, bold, architectural foliage and mainly evergreen species complement the predominant hard landscaping. Emphasis is put on foliage rather than flowers, often resulting in a restricted palette of plants, which does not detract from the structure

At the opposite end of the spectrum are the crisp, clean and uncluttered designs much loved by the minimalist loyalists. Block planting, bold, architectural foliage and mainly evergreen species complement the predominant hard landscaping. Emphasis is put on foliage, rather than on flowers, often resulting in a restricted palette of plants, which does not detract from the structure. In general, fussy plantings with lots of different varieties are not popular anymore, giving way to the repetition of fewer species in drifts and groups. Lawns too, aside from being pretty boring, and requiring plenty of maintenance, water and fertilisers, are either being drastically reduced or avoided altogether, and not only in dry climates. Interesting and creative plant mixes, as well as clever hard landscaping can easily substitute a lawn to create a more sustainable garden. Ultimately, trends and fashions aside, a garden should gratify and delight, and there is no better time than autumn to start planning the new look of your garden.


Over 400 models in store Fluless gas fireplaces also available



FOOD NEWS HW UDDERLY IRRISTABLE The Heffer Pitcher is a fun way to encourage children to drink milk, plus a source of amusement for the adults. With its clever double walled glass design, the pitcher reveals its natural side when filled with milk. Probably the closest you’ll ever get to drinking milk “like a natural” from the comfort of your own kitchen. www.incrediblethings.comt

ELSA Elsa is the funky new raclette machine from the Swiss company Stadler Form. Place a chunk of raclette cheese on the tray, melt it, then scrape it. Enjoy with soft boiled potatoes and you’ve got yourself a serious raclette.


MODERNIST CUISINE AT HOME The culinary revolution that has transformed restaurant menus around the world has made its way into home kitchens. Modernist Cuisine at Home by Nathan Myhrvold with Maxime Bilet is a lavishly illustrated guide for home cooks, complete with all-new recipes tailored for cooking enthusiasts of all skill levels. The book is a 456-page volume of all the essential information that any cook needs to stock a modern kitchen, as well as master Modernist techniques to make hundreds of stunning recipes.

Following the storming success of their Chain Bottle Holder, Luckies now presents the Lasso Wine Bottle Holder. It’s quite a sight, as it creates an optical illusion using the principle of balance, which means the bottle of wine looks like its floating. It’s crafted from chromed iron metal and then covered with the rope with a trailing bit at the end, making the talking point even more dramatic.

CITRUS SPRAY Citrus Spray by Joan Rojeski Dessiny and Alberto Arza for Lékué is an attachment that twists into oranges, lemons and limes to spray the juice on to salads, seafood and other dishes to season them. Smart and cute, we like it.




BIG pumpkin The pumpkin is so widely available this time of year that it’s easy to underestimate its exceptional nutritional value or exquisite taste. Hilton Executive Chef Joe Vella prepares three impossibly tasty dishes with the big orange vegetable, while Bill Hermitage from Delicata Winery recommends the best possible wine accompaniments Photography: Alan Carville Recipes: Joe Vella, Executive Chef, Hilton Malta Wine Recommendations: Bill Hermitage, Delicata Winery


FOOD & WINE HW Thai Pumpkin & Basil Soup (Serves 4) Ingredients 25g

unsalted butter


pumpkin, peeled and cut

into 1cm dices


onion, chopped


garlic cloves, crushed


fresh ginger, finely chopped


thai chilli, thinly sliced


red thai curry paste

Method Heat the butter in a frying pan, add the diced pumpkin and fry for three to four minutes, until coloured. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and chilli, and cook for two minutes. Stir in the paste and cook for one minute, until fragrant. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the pumpkin is just tender. Finally, stir in the coconut milk and torn basil leaves, and season to taste. Serve immediately in four individual bowls.

1ltr chicken stock 175ml

coconut milk

8 basil leaves, torn into small pieces salt & freshly ground black pepper

BEST WINE ACCOMPANIMENT –2011 MEDINA ZIBIBBO VERMENTINO D.O.K. MALTA “Matching wines with soup is no straightforward task, as pairing liquids with liquids has its problems. However, with this particular Thai soup there are so many interesting flavours, such as the fresh ginger, chilli, red curry paste and the coconut milk, that choosing the right wine will enhance the whole dish. We definitely need to find a wine that is refreshing, and ideally one that has the aromatic and spicy characteristics that we will find in the soup. I feel a white will be more appropriate, as the tannins in most reds will clash terribly with the coconut milk. I have therefore opted for a ripe, fruity, spicy dry white that is both fragrant and floral – the Medina blend of Zibibbo Vermentino, served nice and cold of course!”

Pumpkin Risotto


(Serves 4-6) Ingredients 500-600g

ripe pumpkin, cut into

1cm cubes


chicken stock


risotto rice



olive oil for cooking and

to drizzle

few knobs of butter

sea salt & freshly ground

black pepper

small handful of sage leaves

Heat some olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the pumpkin and cook gently for five to seven minutes until just softened, stirring occasionally. Set aside one-third. Put the rest of the pumpkin into a blender and whiz until smooth, adding a touch of stock in order to get the puree moving in the blender. Bring the stock to a simmer in a pan and keep it at a gentle simmer over a low heat. Heat some olive oil in a larger saucepan and tip in the rice. Cook, stirring frequently, for a minute, then add a ladleful of hot stock and stir until it is almost all absorbed before adding another ladleful. Repeat until you’ve reached your last few ladlefuls of stock. Taste the rice to see if it’s al dente. If not, add more stock. Add the pumpkin puree and reserved pumpkin, stirring through and seasoning to taste. Stir in a few knobs of butter and the grated Parmesan. In a small frying pan, fry the sage leaves for a few seconds until crisp, then drain on kitchen paper. Ladle the risotto on to warm plates and tap the bottom of each plate gently to spread it out. Drizzle with a little olive oil and scatter over the Parmesan and sage leaves, then serve.

BEST WINE ACCOMPANIMENT –2011 MEDINA ZIBIBBO VERMENTINO BEST WINE ACCOMPANIMENT – 2011 GRAND VIN DE HAUTEVILLE VIOGNIER D.O.K. MALTA D.O.K. MALTA “Matching wines with soup is no straightforward task; pairing liquids with liquids has its problems. However, “Thisthis fairly full-flavoured pumpkin chickenflavours, stock, sage Parmesan cheese willred require with particular Thai soup therebased are sorisotto many with interesting such and as the fresh ginger, chilli, curry an equally full flavoured, chilled of dry accompany it. The Viognier grapes in Malta paste and the coconut milk thatbottle choosing thewhite rightwine wineto will I am sure enhance the whole dish.grown We definitely produce justasuch are soft, flavoured, round with fruit. The Grand vinthat de we need to find winewines; that is they refreshing andfullideally one that hasand thepacked aromatic andripe spicy characteristics Hauteville Viognier the best. combined flavoursasofthe thetannins pumpkin, the rice, and the will find in the soup.isI by feelfar a white will The be more appropriate, in most redsthe willcheese, clash terribly with Viognier will create a great amalgamation ofacompatible the coconut milk. I have therefore opted for ripe, fruity, flavours.” spicy dry white that is both fragrant and floral – the Medina blend of Zibibbo Vermentino, served nice and cold of course!”






FOOD & WINE HW Method To make the salsa, cut the tomatoes in half and place in a large bowl. Add all the other ingredients and mix well, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper, and a pinch of sugar if you like. Set aside. For the frittata, heat the grill to its highest setting. Peel the pumpkin and cut into 1cm dices. Heat a non-stick frying pan (suitable for use under the grill) and add the olive oil. When hot, toss in the pumpkin and shallot, and season with salt and pepper. Cook over a medium heat for four to five minutes until the pumpkin just becomes tender and lightly golden. Add the goat cheese and mix in. Lightly mix the eggs in a bowl, and the chives and pour over the pumpkin. Shake the pan gently to distribute the ingredients and cook over a low heat, without stirring, for a few minutes until the eggs are beginning to set at the bottom and round the sides. Place the pan under the hot grill briefly until the top of the frittata has set. Try not to overcook the eggs or they will turn rubbery. Leave to stand for a minute, then run a heatproof plastic spatula around the sides of the pan and invert the frittata onto a large plate. Spoon the tomato salsa into a neat pile on top and serve immediately.

Pumpkin Frittata with Cherry Tomato Salsa (Serves 4) Ingredients

Ingredients for Cherry Tomato Salsa


pumpkin, diced


cherry tomatoes


olive oil


spring onions, trimmed and thinly

2 shallot, peeled and finely chopped

sliced on the diagonal


large eggs

6tbsp extra virgin olive oil


goat cheese

2tbsp sesame oil

sea salt & black pepper

handful of coriander leaves, chopped juice of lemon dash of tobasco sauce

pinch of sugar

handful of chives, finely chopped

BEST WINE ACCOMPANIMENT – 2011 MEDINA SYRAH CARIGNAN GRENACHE D.O.K. MALTA “If this dish had been without a tomato salsa, I would probably have been recommending a dry white wine; something like a Maltese Falcon Chardonnay. But because of those sweet ripe cherry tomatoes, I have decided to go with a light bodied, fruity red; one that is soft and very low in tannins. The easy drinking red Medina is made from a really nice blend of three Malta-grown grape varieties; Syrah, Carignan and Grenache. This mellow red will also pair up nicely with the goat cheese in this dish, especially if you are using a rather pungent gamey one.�



Pure Projects The thought of handing over a complete project to another entity to entirely carry all the headaches and heartaches of a conversion is tempting. However, engaging a turnkey company can prove expensive. HOMEWORKS gets questions answered by two professional and highly experienced Project Managers who are confident they can save their clients money and time by engaging their services when completing a conversion. Here’s how – Contributors: Joe and Sandy Bonnici, Project Management and Interior Design, GRF Decorative Finishes/ Anthony Sammut, onepercent Group

What’s the difference between hiring a turnkey contractor and a project manager? Joe Bonnici: “The main difference is that a turnkey contractor is hired by the client and is their one point of reference – they are responsible for all works of the conversion – from negotiation, to hiring, to finish. A project manager is the liaison between the clients and sub-contractors. While we get bills of quantities (comparison quotes) together, ultimately the client chooses which options they want to pursue. The client then pays the subcontractors directly, which means that each subcontractor is responsible for each of their areas. It’s important to highlight there always has to be a project manager overseeing the project, regardless if a turnkey company is contracted or not. A project manager is responsible for drawing up the bill of quantities in the beginning, creating and implementing work schedules, being on site regularly, and supervising as well as certifying payments before the client makes them after the work has been finished. In short, we’re watchdogs for the project.” Anthony Sammut: “The turnkey contractor is one single entity that takes charge of all the trades and jobs involved in a project. A project manager, as the name implies, manages the different contractors. They are not mutually exclusive – in fact many a time they work side by side on a project.”

How do project managers make money? Anthony Sammut: “We offer our services to clients who have chosen us for the furniture. Our main objective is to get the job done right in time for the furniture to be delivered, so many a time, rather than full conversions, we assist our clients in one or two room renovations. Since we provide the service of project management for our clients, we don’t charge for the service; our income is from the furniture that is sold or customised for the space.”

Residential conversion by onepercent; above before and below before

Joe Bonnici: “In my case, we don’t work on commissions, but rather a set rate at the beginning of the project, which doesn’t change throughout. On the other hand, most turnkey contractors work off commissions, but don’t charge a set fee. Our job is to negotiate the best possible prices for my client. We wouldn’t be able to do this if we took a cut for commission because that commission is ultimately being charged to the client.” 103

HW TURNKEY Which option is quicker: self-conversion, turnkey or project management? Joe Bonnici: “I don’t know how homeowners manage their own conversions. They must waste so much time hiring and then doing things over. Apart from that, someone needs to be on site all the time and pushing. The builders would take forever if this weren’t done. We have a lot of projects going on so we have that muscle with our builders. They know that if they don’t finish to schedule, we’re not going to be happy. In turn, we won’t use them again. When it comes to a one-off conversion for a client, the workers are definitely not going to prioritise the project because they know it’s not going to lead to more work. In my case, I work with the same builders and suppliers as much as possible. The result of this is that I get a better service and a better price. You can save thousands when you hire someone that knows what they’re doing – not to mention so much time. Plus, you get a better end product. “A turnkey contractor spends a lot of time at the onset of the project, as they need to gather the quotes beforehand to present to the client before they are engaged for the job. That tender process can take a lot of time. A project manager can get started on the job faster, as they are already engaged – they can begin moving. In my case, I have a lot of years experience in the industry with an ear down to the ground so I can still cost things out quite accurately before obtaining exact quotations. The figures are always very close, unless the client chooses something later, which is more expensive than what was budgeted for.” Anthony Sammut: “Rather than saying which is quicker, I might as well say which is, in my opinion, better. We choose the options of being project managers, since it’s an entity acting as a representative for the client, the job gets done faster, as a good project manager will want to bring their clients results. As already mentioned, we specialise in the smaller conversions, and from our experience, big turnkey contractors tend to prefer and prioritise the larger, commercial projects over residential ones. Another important aspect is that we help coordinate the client’s preferred suppliers, so we do not impose any of our sub-contractors. In today’s world, it’s very difficult to find someone who’s got both the knowledge and the time, so I definitely wouldn’t recommend self-conversion. I have heard so many horror stories with clients giving us a target date for the delivery of their furniture and then being severely behind schedule come delivery date. Had they asked us first, it would have saved them a substantial amount of money and they would be moving in their place on the preset date.”

How can a homeowner avoid going over-budget and over-time? Final result of a residential conversion by GRF Decorative Finishes

Joe Bonnici: “That’s my job as a project manager. It all depends on the client’s budget at the onset. My job is to ensure that it doesn’t exceed that. When a turnkey contractor is engaged, they still have to implement a project manager on site and they’re going to have to pay that person. So that expense is still going to come along, particularly if it’s a good project manager. If a homeowner is doing a conversion themselves, they need to have a substantial contingency in the budget. Doing it yourself means that you will definitely go over-budget.” Anthony Sammut: “It’s very difficult for inexperienced homeowners who are converting themselves not to go over budget. There are so many unforeseen elements that even if they were doing it for a third or fourth time, they still wouldn’t be able to pre-empt a lot of the aspects that unexpectedly arise. Engaging someone with experience and know-how is the way to stay on budget and time. I have personally been in this business for 16 years and I keep learning something from every project we undertake!”

What should homeowners watch out for when completing a conversion? Anthony Sammut: Sticking to our specialty of domestic conversions, I would say to watch out for those that claim to be Jacks of all Trades. People will promise to take care of everything and then they might engage unskilled workers in areas where they are not specialists. From experience, I can say that the final result is always better when you have a specialist contractor for each specific trade. Also, be weary of those who do not agree on a pre-established rate and set a their charge as a percentage rate of the project spend – to me this is a conflicting situation because it doesn’t make sense that someone who is taking a percentage rate can be simultaneously looking after the client’s best interests. Those interests should be to get the best results within the best budget – unless the job fee is completely transparent from the start.” 104







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GYPSUM & LIGHTING For all types of gypsum works and lights. Free onsite quotation and 3D design of your room upon confirmation of order. Direct importers of all type of light fittings, switches, grid lights and high power LEDS. Our new shop opening soon in October in Palm street Paola. Mob: 79052100

home decor 110



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CHRISTMAS 2012 EDITION OUT NOVEMBER 24TH Did you hear? Yuletide is near! Don’t miss the HOMEWORKS Christmas issue, out November 24th in The Sunday Times of Malta Stunning homes styled up for the Christmas season Page after page of GREAT styling ideas and Christmas inspiration Fun home craft ideas for the whole family Over 100 great gift ideas for the home….and so much more



A&A Mizzi Ltd, Krups, Triq Is-Salib Ta’ L-Imriehel, Qasam Industrijali Mriehel. Tel: 2148 8168 / 2148 8160. / Adore More, Vjal il-Haddiem, Rabat. Tel: 2145 6570. / AM Projects Ltd, 8, Triq Il-Garra, Victoria Gardens, L-Ibrag, Swieqi. Tel: 2137 4563. Ar Tech, Triq Fleur de Lys, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 1300. sales@artechmalta. com / Astral, Marina Court, Triq L-Abate Rigord, Ta’Xbiex. Tel: 2134 0562 / 2134 5522. / B&M Supplies Ltd, Triq Dun Karm, B’Kara Bypass, B’kara. Tel: 2144 0710.

Joinwell, Triq il-Mithna, Qormi. Tel: 2278 2000. /

Creations Omnistat, Liland Buildings, Triq L-Mdina, Attard. Tel: 2141 1541/ 2141 7616. /

JTS Trading, Triq il-Kummerc, Qormi. Tel: 2149 6415 / 9944 6951. /

Cutrico Ltd, Cutrico Building, Old Railway Track, St. Venera. Tel: 2149 8658 / 249 8693. / D’Ambrogio Gypsum Works, 105, Triq Mattelolo Saliba, Zurrieq. Tel: 7905 2100. / Drapes, 307, Triq in-Naxxar, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 2667.

B4 Textiles, Triq Haz-Zabbar, Fgura. Tel: 2180 1092. Triq il-Kostituzzjoni, Mosta. Tel: 2143 2003. /

Emmanuel Delicata Winemaker Ltd, The Winery on the Waterfront, Paola. Tel: 2182 5199 / 7982 5199. /

Banju Boutique, Triq L-Arkata, Paola. Tel: 2180 9111 / 2180 9112. /

Farrugia Lighting & Interiors, Triq Dun Karm Xerri, Iklin. Tel: 2141 9111. /

Bathroom Design, 358, Triq In-Naxxar, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 1328/9. /

FGP Ltd, 109, Triq Valletta, Luqa. Tel: 2166 7107/8 / 2167 5384. /

Biggie Best, Triq tal-Balal, San Gwann. Tel: 2138 8880 / 2738 8880. Blueline Halmann, Triq Achille Ferris, Msida. Tel: 2131 6432/5. Triq In-Naxxar, Lija. Tel: 2141 2187 / 2141 4288. /

Finishing Touches, Triq in-Naxxar, Lija. Tel: 2741 8750 / 7941 8750. Fino, Fino Buildings, Triq Notabile, Mriehel. Tel: 2549 3000. / Forestals, Bypass Mriehel, Mriehel. Tel: 2343 6000.

BOV, 58, Triq Zakkarija, Valletta. Tel: 2131 2020.

Form Ltd, Triq il-Wied, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 6000.

BoConcept, Triq tal-Balal, San Gwann. Tel: 2137 8011 / 2137 8012 / 7937 8011. /

G R F Ltd., Triq Bella Vista, San Gwann. Tel: 2137 7378 / 7942 4422. /

Brands International, Triq tal-Balal, San Gwann.Tel: 2144 4110 / 2744 4110 / 2144 4177 / 7977 1100.

Garden It, 26, Triq is-Santwarju, San Gwann. Tel: 2137 7448 / 7979 3000. /

Brighter Solutions, 2/3, Triq Tal-Balal, Ghargur. Tel: 2142 4750. /

Gifts&More, Topline, Triq Sant Andru, St. Andrews. Tel: 2137 2256. /

C.Azzopardi Antiques, Shop No 1, Triq id-Dragunara, The Westin Dragonara Resort, San Giljan, Paceville. Tel: 2138 1839 / 9949 7300. /

Home & Gift Centre, M4 Shopping Complex, Triq il-Linja, Attard. Tel: 2143 6285.

Carmelo Delia (Est. 1890), Triq Il-Wied, B’Kara. Tel: 2388 9200 / 2147 2882. / Casanova, Triq San Tumas, Luqa. Tel: 2180 0221 / 2180 0214. / Chateau d’Ax, Triq Il-Ferrovija L-Antika, Santa Venera. Tel: 2144 6411. Clever Homes, Triq Testaferrata, Ta’ Xbiex. Tel: 2132 4473 / 7949 6097.


core, Triq il-Wied, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 3449. /

Hydrolectric Ltd, Triq il-Kappilan Mifsud, Hamrun. Tel: 2124 1111. / Ideacasa, Triq il-Wied Ta’ L-Imsida, B’Kara. Tel: 2148 3848. / Il Camino, 48/49, Triq Fleur De Lys, B’Kara. Tel: 2144 1689 / 7988 8999. / Insideout Design Finishes, Blue Harbour Mansions, Ix-Xatt Ta’ Xbiex, Ta’ Xbiex. Tel: 2722 3323.

Kenneth Darmanin Ltd, Triq Joseph L Zerafa, Zurrieq. Tel: 9947 4786. / Klimaflo, Triq il-Hgejjeg, San Gwann. Tel: 2701 1118/9 / 9949 5161. / Krea Ltd, Triq L-Mdina, Qormi. Tel: 2146 3501. /

Project Life by Vella Falzon, Triq In-Naxxar, San Gwann. Tel: 2138 6164. / R.Living, Dawret L-Imriehel, Qormi. Tel: 2149 9699. / Raphael Azzopardi, 6, Triq Uqija, Swieqi. Tel: 2137 3812. / Recowatt Co. Ltd, Triq L-Mdina, Zebbug. Tel: 2166 0546 / 9947 2878 / 9906 2969. /

LOFT, Triq San Pawl, Naxxar. Tel: 2099 9966.

Retroforma, 81, Triq il-Kbira, Sliema. Tel: 2131 2173. /

Lux-It Lighting, 105, Triq Hal Luqa, Paola. Tel: 2166 5544.

S&S Bathrooms, Triq il- Mosta, Lija. Tel: 2141 2222, 2741 5694.

m+d design, 5, Triq San Girgor, Sliema. Tel: 2134 3219. /

Satariano, 122, Triq Il-Wied, B’Kara. Tel: 2149 2149.

Mac Med Ltd, Enrico Mizzi Street, Ta’ Xbiex. Tel: 2131 0111. Mdina Glass, Crafts Village Ta’ Qali, Attard. Tel: 2141 5786. MRCD LTD, Triq Karmenu Camilleri, Qormi. Tel: 2146 8770. / Nestle’, Triq Pantar, Lija. Tel: 2338 9000. / Onepercent, Triq il-Wied ta’ L’Msida, Msida. Tel: 2546 5600 / 2546 5000. / The Rug Gallery, 11, Ix-Xatt, Sliema. Tel: 2133 4191 / 9948 5716. / Outdoor Solutions, Triq il-Wied, Msida. Tel: 2099 0009. / Oxford House, Triq Notabile, Mriehel. Tel: 2546 4000. / P.Cutajar & Co. Ltd, Capital Business Centre, Triq Taz-Zwejt, San Gwann. Tel: 2144 8466. / Petrolea, Triq il-Wied ta’ L-Imsida, Msida. Tel: 2144 4478 / 2144 5728. / Piscopo Gardens Ltd, Triq Toni Camilleri, Burmarrad. Tel: 2158 3755. / Portelli & Brincat, Triq Kukkanja, Santa Venera. Tel: 2148 8199, 2148 2831. /

to advertise in this section please caLL: 2133 9999 or email:

Seamless Ltd, 4, Triq Guze Duca, Qormi. Tel: 2144 0404 / 7940 0404. / Shaker Ltd, Triq il-Gibjun, San Gwann. Spot On, Triq il-Palmi, Paola. Tel: 2166 8880 / 7981 7777. / Sterling, Sterling House, 2, Triq Zakkarija, Valletta. Tel: 2124 5999. / The Atrium, Homemate, Bypass ta’ l’Mriehel, Mriehel. Tel: 2147 0000. / The Drury Collection, Triq San Lwigi, Msida. Tel: 2133 9627. / The Rug Company, Area F, Blue Harbour Business Centre, Ta’ Xbiex. Tel: 2132 4990. Tower Aluminium Ltd, Tower Bldgs, Triq Gharram, Zebbug. Tel: 2146 5156. / Unitech, 47, Vjal Kottoner, Fgura. Tel: 7777 3388. VCT Ltd Light & Design, Triq Ponsomby, Mosta. Tel: 2143 2571. / Yal Home & Electronics, Vjal Il-Wiehed U Ghoxrin Ta’ Settembru, Naxxar. Tel: 2741 1100 / 9949 6120. / Viroc International, Kingsway Palace, Triq Ir-Repubblika, Valletta. Tel: 2124 7518 / 2124 7519. /

your first dream home A new chapter in your life means it is finally time to own the home you have been dreaming of. At BOV we understand that this first step can be made even easier with our support. Talk to us today and discover the range of benefits that can make your dream home an affordable reality. Your success is our goal.


BOV 30773

2131 2020 I Issued by Bank of Valletta p.l.c. 58, Zachary Street Valletta VLT 1130 - Malta

Loans are subject to normal bank lending criteria and final approval from your BOV branch. Terms and conditions apply. The term of the loan must not go beyond retirement age.


Aran Collection now at our showroom

Max Divani Europa 3 Seater Leather Sofa


Calligaris Real Coffee Table


Mito Box Wall Unit


You take care of the kitchen...and the living room is on us! During this month we’re giving you a free living area, consisting of a modern wall unit, coffee table and sofa when you buy an Aran kitchen. So don’t worry too much on how to fill your living area, as we’ll take care of that ourselves. Terms and Conditions apply.

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Saturday 27th October 09:00 - 18:00

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This issue, I’m going to borrow Architect Matthew J. Mercieca’s words on renovation from his article in issue 55: ‘Things and places could j...


This issue, I’m going to borrow Architect Matthew J. Mercieca’s words on renovation from his article in issue 55: ‘Things and places could j...

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