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May 2018


How this entrepreneur transformed her villa in The Springs into her dream home SHOP FOR DESIGN CLASSICS ● DINING ROOM INSPIRATION ● MOVE TO JBR



s we welcome the start of Ramadan this month, we’re getting into the spirit of togetherness. With this in mind, Nahel Selo, creative director at Sedar Global, advises on how to create a modern majlis (page 22) for a sense of calmness and conviviality. We also caught up with American luxury homewares designer Anna Rabinowicz (page 30), who was blown away by the hospitality she received during her first trip to the Middle East – one lady she met even gifted the necklace from her own neck. It’s said that food is the ingredient that binds us together, so our dining room special (page 32) is bursting with ideas for elegant, inviting spaces, while our curves feature (page 25) is all about creating warm, welcoming spaces. Elsewhere in this issue, we tour serial entrepreneur Hiba Balfaqih’s villa in The Springs (page 36), chosen for its views and for its potential to be transformed into her dream home. Further afield, the couple behind Margeza Design Studio also knocked down interior walls to open up their Budapest loft apartment (page 44). Finally, if you’re looking for a home in a buzzy neighbourhood, with everything you need right on your doorstep, check out our guide to Jumeirah Beach Residence (page 51).

Managing Director Victoria Thatcher Editorial Director John Thatcher Managing Editor Faye Bartle Editor Lucy Land Art Director Kerri Bennett Designer Jamie Pudsey Contributing Designer Julie Lee Production Manager Muthu Kumar Advertising Group Manager Sukaina Hussein +971 50 515 9691 To contact any of the above people, email firstname@ Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from HOT Media Publishing is strictly prohibited. HOT Media Publishing does not accept liability for omissions or errors in Betterhomes Magazine. Tel: +971 4 364 2876 Fax: +971 4 369 7494

E ditor lucy@hotmed

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May 2018 @betterhomesuae @betterhomesuae


How this entrepreneur transformed her villa in The Springs into her dream home SHOP FOR DESIGN CLASSICS ● DINING ROOM INSPIRATION ● MOVE TO JBR

Cover image by Muthu Kumar | 9








Inspiration, innovation and need-to-know updates



Bring a design classic into your home





Jay Vasu, director of Covering Concepts



Jumeirah Beach Residence

Elegant curves for spring





Find your new home with our pick of properties to buy


Anna Rabinowicz brings people together





A room to share a meal in


Rent a home in a buzzy community




Create an Arabian-inspired floor seating area

Inside an entrepreneur’s dream home

Kings’ School Al Barsha ensures success for all



Noni Anand answers your queries and shares her gems

A loft apartment in Budapest filled with light and fun



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Our edit of sculptural floor lamps for beautiful lighting


Dragon Mart 2 offers high quality marble materials and a wide variety of stores for everything you need to bring your designs to life. Building Materials Marble | Granite | Wood | Counter Tables Kitchen Sinks | Ventilation Hoods | Interior Paints Furnishings Beds | Bedside Tables | Wallpaper | Bed Linen Lampshades | Candles | Curtains | Sanitary Ware For more information, call +971 4 390 9999 or visit our website: DragonMartComplex



SHOP If you’re looking for some seasonal accessories to lift a room, head to French store Maisons du Monde for plenty of fresh and affordable ideas. We love the Golden Oasis collection, which features a mixture of natural materials and neutral desert hues to create the feel of a sandy sanctuary. Jacquard motif throw, Dhs250, cushion, Dhs70, glass vase, Dhs55, Maisons du Monde, | 13

SHOP | Betterhomes Magazine


The latest in homeware, interiors and design trends



With a 135,000-strong following, @chairishco is the go-to Instagram account for those looking for design inspiration for their home. “We post images of breathtaking spaces selected for their eclectic and individualistic style,” says Anna Brockway, cofounder and CMO of “We celebrate idiosyncratic chic.”

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Benjamin Dhong’s living room photographed by John Merkl



For those born without green fingers, you can still grow your own herbs and vegetables without fretting over the optimum weather conditions. Finnish company Plantui has developed a product with an automated lighting and watering system and without the need for soil. Simply place the plant capsules in the device and watch your mini garden grow. Available from My Green Chapter.

Keeping your home spotless is getting easier thanks to the latest gadgets from Kärcher. We’re loving the SV 7 steam vaccuum cleaner for its ability to steam, vacuum and dry in a single pass. Available from its new UAE flagship store Kärcher Center Sedana Abu Dhabi.




Discover some of the coolest brands from the region at new concept store BeYou Boutique, located on the ground floor in Dar Al Wasl Mall on Al Wasl Road. The brand, founded by Saudi entrepreneur Amna Al-Idrissi, is a reflection of her belief in nature, rich heritage and art. We love the quirky designs by 44 Collective (pictured, above).

Interior design and renovation specialist ReHubic Dubai, renowned for its hi-tech approach, has joined forces with interior design and furniture company High Happiness Design Dubai. Head to their new showroom La Coleccion (177-179 Umm Suqeim Street, Al Quoz 4) to discover how they can bring a strong sense of space and form to your home.



Renowned architect David Rockwell has added three new designs to his bold collection for The Rug Company (the Hand-crafted in bamboo silk, the rugs include Moonlight Tidal, representing a shimmering reflection; Misty, a silky ink pile (pictured); and Lola, inspired by the glazed ceramic vessels that David and his daughter Lola decorated in the studio of Montreal ceramic artist Pascale Girardin.

SAVE Paper vase cover in Delft blue, Dhs75, URBAN NEST | 15


WHERE WEDDING DREAMS TURN INTO DREAM WEDDINGS Plan your happily ever after surrounded by desert landscapes, majestic sunsets and a choice of grand venues for the big occasion.

For bookings please contact: +971 4 809 6498 /babalshamshotel



Betterhomes Magazine | SHOP 1





Choose sustainable rattan for a naturally stylish look 6



1. Limited-edition Trano Manala scented candle, Dhs1,503, BAOBAB COLLECTION at AMARA 2. Rattan side table, Dhs2,000, URBAN NEST 3. Peacock feather chair, Dhs2,045, TRIBE DUBAI 4. Small Ova lantern, Dhs212, HOUSE DOCTOR at AMARA 5. Stockholm coffee table, Dhs695, IKEA 6. Captiva side chair, Dhs1,295, CRATE & BARREL | 17

SHOP | Betterhomes Magazine



1. PH 5 pendants, price on request, LOUIS POULSEN at IKONHOUSE 2. Vintage Isamu Noguchi coffee table, Dhs18,900,THE ODD PIECE 3. AJ table lamp, Dhs3,499, LOUIS POULSEN at IKONHOUSE 4. Front Page magazine rack, Dhs1,008, KARTELL at WHITE ALMONDS 5. Halyard chair, including neck cushion, Dhs43,990, PP MÖBLER at IKONHOUSE 6. Italian brass flower lamp, Dhs20,425, MAISON JANSEN at THE ODD PIECE 7. Tic and Tac clock, Dhs662, KARTELL at WHITE ALMONDS



Egg chair in Burj Khalifa


ENDURING APPEAL Create impact by bringing a design classic into your home


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“With their timeless aesthetic appeal, design classics are often strikingly simple. The desire to own one never fades,” reveals Katie Dedinska, showroom manager at ikonhouse ( “If you want to invest in a design classic, check which brands have the legal right to produce the original design. For example, Arne Jacobsen’s Egg chair is only produced by Danish manufacturer Republic of Fritz Hansen, and the Eames Lounge chair can only be produced by two licensed companies in the world (including Vitra for the UAE). “Look for a certificate of authenticity or a license number. This way, you can ensure the products are made in the proper way and are respectfully sourced. Some brands offer online registrations of their products, so that they are under warranty for more than 25 years. Be patient while searching as availability can be limited. It takes more than 100 steps to complete Hans Wegner’s Wishbone chair by hand, for instance, and over two years to dry the wood for some of PP Möbler’s chairs.”


To advertise in the UAE’s highest-circulating homes magazine, contact Sukaina Hussein on 050 515 9691

IDEAS We love the vibrant semi-tropical leaf pattern of this wallpaper, which takes its name from one of the centuries-old villages that make up the Cinque Terre, on northwest Italy’s rugged Ligurian coast. It is paired with a lively geometric fabric-upholstered chair. Called Velatura, which means ‘sails’ in Italian, its cutvelvet diamonds reference Venice’s maritime history. Vernazza wallpaper, Dhs450 per roll, Velatura fabric, Dhs801 per metre, Osborne & Little. Available from Casana LLC,, 04 339 5839 | 21

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine Antique teapot lamp, Dhs2,479, 44 COLLECTIVE at BEYOU BOUTIQUE

Various fabrics, price on request, SEDAR GLOBAL

Sedar Global




Soften light sources for a relaxed feel

Chamois cushion, Dhs305, BAHR AL NOOR at THOUQI.COM

Create an Arabian-inspired floor seating area to unwind in “Research has shown that when you sit on the floor, you feel calmer, your digestive tract relaxes and you bond more with your guests than when seated on chairs,” says Nahel Selo, creative director at Sedar Global. “Choose a corner for your floor or slightly elevated seating so guests are close enough to chat and have walls to lean against. Estimate how many people you want the majlis to seat and work around that. “Pick light shades and add one or two dark soft furnishings for contrast. Keep the colours of the seating solid, so you can add patterns to your walls and soft furnishings. Choose fabric curtains, and raise them as high as you can to give the room height. Geometric print rugs and lightly patterned wallpaper will act as a nice breaker to the solid colours of the seating.”

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Selection of lanterns, from Dhs21, AL-FUTTAIM ACE

Prayer mat, Dhs840, BAHR AL NOOR at THOUQI.COM

Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS


Our interiors expert answers your queries and shares her hidden gems in the city Any more COpy

MY LITTLE BLACK BOOK FOR LIGHTING: Huda Lighting, Home Centre, IKEA and I Light You are all great options to suit different budgets.

FOR RUGS: IKEA, Home Centre and The Red Carpet. I’ve also ordered custom-made rugs from India, Iran and the US for clients.


Noni Anand, founder of Spacez Design Consulting I have a Dubai Marina penthouse with large, industrial-style windows. What treatments do you recommend to soften them without detracting from the view? Enjoy it! You’ve paid a premium for this feature. However, the right curtains, shades or shutters can turn any window – and the view it affords – into a strong focal point. A lot would depend on your current choice of décor and your budget, but I recommend dressing your windows with sheer curtains or natural shades. Both are cost efficient options, and will look glamorous as well. I want to add some statement pieces to my home. Where should I start? Everything depends on what’s going on in your home currently. There are a multitude of options, including oversized wall art, sculptures, chandeliers, statement furniture and water features, if you own a villa. If you have a minimalist style, choose simple pieces that are functional. If you are ready to invest in art, classic

artworks are a good place to start. Use muted shades on walls, with a pop of colour on accent walls to add vibrancy. Decluttering is key. There should be plenty of space to move around and space in between furniture to create a beautiful feeling of freedom. The floor tiles in my villa look a bit dated. Should I replace them with marble or wood – what are the pros and cons of each? Marble instantly elevates a space, giving it a regal feel. It is also available in a variety of colours, so you have flexible decorative schemes, and it can be cut to varying shapes and sizes to create intricate mosaics. As a premium element, marble is pricey, however, and can be prone to scratching and acid stains under the wrong conditions. Wood flooring gives warmth to a home. With our extreme climate, which wavers between dry and humid atmospheres, however, expert installation is key, so that the wood has room to expand and contract. There are many different types of wood and colours to choose from. I recommend using engineered wood, which is made from layers. This means that it has a stable core and is likely to expand, contract or shift when exposed to moisture, humidity and temperature, making it perfect for the UAE.

This depends on your budget and what you enjoy personally, whether that’s incense, candles, diffusers, essential oils or oud, which I love. I shop for fragrances during my travels but in Dubai I usually go to Jo Malone, L’Occitane, Ladurée and Arabian Oud.

DREAM BUY: A custom leather oversized wall artwork that I commissioned.

Spacez Design Consulting | 23

FROM TOP: Covering Concepts; Vispring; Zaha Hadid Architects photograph by Scott Francis; Designers Guild; Jotun

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine


JAY VASU The director of floor and wall specialists Covering Concepts reveals his nature-inspired must-haves FAVOURITE FLOORING

Wood because its naturally occurring patterns are never repeated, giving it a perennially fresh look. There are also plenty of effects available nowadays, including natural, smoked, burnt, sanded, brushed and scratched. Whatever you choose, make sure you go for Forest Stewardship Council-certified manufacturers and chemical-free glues.


We spend over 35% of our lifetime in bed, so it’s important to have a good quality bed, with a backsupporting mattress that suits your body. Also, I like cooking, so a well-appointed kitchen is crucial in our household. I like a spacious, modern, modular kitchen, with an open-plan living room and access to plenty of sunlight.


The late Dame Zaha Hadid was a real master in designing any type of project, be it a masterplan, architecture or interiors. Her simple designs had a unique flow and she brought a fresh approach to every project.


Black is great for playing with contrasts – any bright colour will shine on a black background. Grey, meanwhile, gives an elegant feel – use it as a base and play around with other colours.

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Wallpaper can create more depth and the opportunity for creativity is boundless. With modern technology, we can easily achieve 3D designs that can change the way a wall looks. There are a vast number of options for colour, design, character and material, including vinyl, fabric and paper.

Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS

AHEAD OF THE CURVE It’s all about perfect circles and elegant curves this season


This chair, from the Pottery Barn Teen collection, is designed with foldable legs and a velvet pleated seat – perfect for a laidback studying session. Hang-A-Round chair, Dhs475, Pottery Barn, | 25

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine


Bold yet versatile, the ombre-striped jacquard weave with a small-scale tile pattern in a monochrome graphic print that is featured on the sphere is inspired by the menswear collection by Christian Lacroix. It is complemented by a classic stripe in tactile velvet (on the bolster), and a geometric tile jacquard weave (bench fabric), while the fantastical wallpaper evokes trailing ivy branches and blossoming pansies in trellis formation, which frame a series of serene landscapes. Rosee Du Matin Roseau fabric, Dhs970 per metre, Cabanon Soft Roseau velvet, Dhs890 per metre, Pergola Shades Crepuscule fabric, Dhs1,177 per metre, Coup De Vent Perce Neige wallpaper, Dhs610 per roll, Christian Lacroix for Designers Guild at Maison D’art,

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS


Add a touch of lightness to your living space with sinuous seating in a chic light grey. Complement it with pops of pink and contrasting geometric patterns – shown here in the metal artwork and floor lamp shade. Ella three-seater sofa, Ella armchair, Jerry pouf, GeoManiac marble metal art, Silvia floorlamp, all prices on request, Balfour armchair, Dhs3,464, IDdesign, | 27

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS


Known for his pared-down forms and use of bold colours, award-winning designer Mauro Lipparini has created a welcoming bed, with its enveloping shape and soft padded headboard. Basket bed, Dhs17,065, Mauro Lipparini for Bonaldo. Available from Western Furniture, | 29


Luxury homeware designer Anna Rabinowicz on learning from biology, creating tension and bringing people together Interview: Lucy Land


assionate about the intersection of art and science, Anna Rabinowicz holds a master’s degree in design and engineering from Stanford University, where she now regularly teaches. She began her career designing prosthetic knees and devices for cardiac bypass surgery before moving into designing luxury homewares and, with a focus on natural materials, launched Anna By RabLabs in 2002. We catch up with the creative at Bloomingdale’s Home… Was there a particular moment that sparked your move from designing medical devices to luxury homewares? It was a natural evolution. I’m very interested in how we can learn from biology to design things that enhance our world. In the field of medical devices, I was learning from and then mimicking biology, whereas in homeware design, I’m learning from biology to create modern objects that resonate with, and enhance, people’s lives. When you design medical devices, the impact is very obvious: you’re helping to replace something that is broken. When you’re creating objects for the home, you’re bringing excitement, joy, happiness and togetherness into people’s lives in a very long-lasting way. Tell us about your latest collection… It represents a larger statement about what is happening in the world. In our changing, fragmented world in which people are not getting along for various reasons, these two seemingly disparate materials – understated Carrera marble and a shiny metal – show that they can work together to create something entirely new. You can see a waist in my designs, where the two different materials deliberately roll into each other – it’s a design acknowledgement of their separateness. It also creates visual tension. You can see it in the tops of the salt and pepper shakers, which are 1.5mm off from being a perfect half-sphere, too. These tensions make you look again because your mind will try to make it look symmetrical. What do you find most rewarding about teaching product design? I love being able to take the knowledge that I’ve acquired and impart it in such a way that it’s relevant to the students’ lives.

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In the same way that I have a couple of amazing former professors whom I call on when I have a difficulty, I love being a mentor. It’s also very exciting to watch their development over time. I have particularly enjoyed watching one former student’s trajectory, from third year of school to becoming my research assistant. What’s your vision of sustainability? Made from long-lasting materials, such as 24-karat gold, our pieces are designed to last a lifetime and to be passed down to the next generation. The greatest fear for any designer is that we create something that falls asleep in a drawer because it doesn’t hold meaning for somebody. My challenge is to understand people and how their lives are changing, while also making timeless products that transcend trends. What’s the most important thing to get right in the home? To create an atmosphere in which you feel comfortable and that expresses who you are. What have you discovered about the Middle East? There is a warmth and sense of hospitality here that I have not experienced before. People have welcomed us into their homes, given us tours and gifted us things. It’s incredible how much time – the greatest gift – people have spent with us. It’s very exciting because these values are very much aligned with what I – and my company – believe in. What’s next? We’re moving into designing regionally specific collections. We all share common values but the way we manifest them through rituals really varies, so this trip is about learning what people need that is specific to their culture, religion and country in preparation for the spring 2019 collection especially for this market. How people get together with friends and how they celebrate Ramadan, for example, interests me. There’s great potential in doing this because it shows that we’re listening and we care about local lives. Anna by RabLabs 2018 collection is available from Bloomingdale’s Home, The Dubai Mall

Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS | 31

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

DINE WITH ME Create a room that lures friends and family to share a meal in

A natural beauty

We love the organic shape of this statement dining table. Made from solid albizia lebbeck wood, known for its unique banded appearance, plus resin and metal, it’s the perfect centrepiece. Kyoto dining table, Dhs16,275, Marina Home Interiors,

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS

Right and exact

This stunning stone table has a new, sophisticated extension mechanism so that it retains its symmetry whether extended or in its closed position – when fully extended, it is positioned lengthwise under the centre leaf so the extension is no longer visible from the side. It is shown here with luxuriously upholstered bucket seat armchairs on bases comprised of steel and polished chrome. Atlas table, Dhs60,950, Coppa chairs, Dhs19,740, Draenert at Western Furniture, | 33

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

Fresh air and sunshine

Handcrafted from sustainable mango wood, this dining table would feel right at place in a European farmhouse. Its planks are lightened with a grey wash and are complemented by naturally sustainable rattan dining chairs, made by Indonesian craftsmen. Basque dining table, Dhs3,699, Basque bench, Dhs1,619, Maluku armchair, Dhs925, Maluku side chair, Dhs785, Maluku cushion, Dhs185, Crate & Barrel,

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS


FOTO pendant lamp, Dhs65, IKEA

Blue glasses, Dhs35–Dhs45, ZARA HOME

Mundo dining table, Dhs3,999, KARE

Rebeca dining chair, Dhs549, THE ONE | 35

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS

A SENSE FOR STYLE With some smart groundwork, entrepreneur Hiba Balfaqih created her dream home Words: Lucy Land

Photographs: Muthu Kumar | 37

IDEAS | Better Betterhomes HomesMagazine Magazine

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here’s no doubt that serial entrepreneur Hiba Balfaqih’s villa, which she shares with her husband Shafiq in The Springs reflects her personality. With her corporate background, friends and colleagues know the organised side of her character, which is reflected in her smartly furnished home, with its neutrals and a pop of pink (she describes herself as a ‘sometime feminist’). A skull motif acts as a counterpoint to the feminine touch. “I can’t explain why I love skulls, but I adore black because it can be both classic and edgy,” she beams. Her pet peeve is messiness. “My husband and I tidy up all the time – it’s one of my favourite things about our relationship.” Just two years ago, she swapped her career in HR to launch her consultancy

I ADORE BLACK BECAUSE IT CAN BE BOTH CLASSIC AND EDGY business, The Startup Factory, and most recently, started a stress-relieving concept called The Smash Room. She also regularly gets booked to deliver motivational talks. Peek inside her fridge and you’ll find it crammed with Tupperware boxes of freshly made meals (the couple spend two hours each Saturday preparing their food for the week). “It’s the most efficient way to ensure we eat healthily while on the move,” she explains. She also | 39

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine


spends half an hour per day exercising on her rebounder, and uses Bluetooth connectivity to listen to audio books at home and during her commute to maximise her reading time. “I can’t go a day without reading,” she admits. The property was originally a threebedroom villa but Hiba had one of the rooms transformed into a walk-in closet. “My husband has one wardrobe and the rest are mine,” she smiles. Their bed was custom-made by King Koil. “We invested in a good quality mattress,” she

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says. There’s a stack of business books on her bedside table and a motivational ‘purpose board’ above her desk. “It offers a good way to stay focused because I read it every day,” she says. The other side of Hiba is creative and fun, which is reflected in the corner seating in the living room, decorated with colourful pop art accessories, framed album covers, a customised games table, signed sports memorabilia and a collection of snow globes, picked up on her travels.

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IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

HOME COMFORTS My top décor tip is… Ensure your home represents you and make it functional. I’m currently reading… Man’s Search for Himself by Rollo May. Home is… A place where you can be comfortable with the people you love.

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS

Having grown up in Montreal, Canada, where the family’s garden overlooked the neighbour’s, Hiba’s non-negotiable was having a home with a view. “In Montreal, they don’t have fences, whereas Dubai has walls between neighbours.” A villa in The Springs with a lake view provided the answer. However, Hiba needed some persuading. “These houses aren’t new and I didn’t like the original colour scheme, so we needed to check the approvals for renovations and set aside a budget.” Once given the green light, Hiba transformed the entrance, bringing it forward and tearing down interior walls to open up the space. “The agents sometimes show people our home to give them ideas for their own.” Hiba checked out Pinterest for inspiration, measured her spaces and made repeat visits to the malls in preparation for her savvy furniture buys. “It’s all about mixing and matching rather than buying expensive pieces only,” she reveals. “There’s a lot from IKEA, Home Centre, IDdesign and some things are from Dragon Mart, while the really special pieces, such as the dining table and chandeliers, are from the likes of Marina Home.” She found a carpenter from Dragon Mart, who custom-built the walk-in closet and seating in the pop art-decorated space. “You don’t have to spend a lot – it’s about doing your groundwork, shopping around and having an eye for style.” Did Shafiq have a say in their home décor? “He picked the kitchen and the outdoor furniture because he likes to cook,” Hiba says. “Other than that, he supported my choices. Now, he says that when he envisioned his dream home, this is what it looked like.”

Zikra planter, Dhs699 for a set of two, MARINA HOME INTERIORS

GET THE LOOK Kong nesting tables, Dhs1,595 for a set of two, THE ONE Pop cushion, Dhs450, MARIA IQBAL

Pop armoire, Dhs3,500, MARIA IQBAL

Skold sheepskin rug, Dhs395, IKEA | 43

IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine

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Betterhomes Magazine | IDEAS

In the heart of Budapest, the couple behind Margeza Design Studio has brought plenty of light and fun into their loft apartment Words: Lucy Land Photographs: Erdőháti Áron | 45

IDEAS | Better Betterhomes HomesMagazine Magazine


ur entire apartment is flooded with natural light,” enthuses Géza Hamori. “The giant glass window in the living room beautifully shows off the ever-changing face of the city.” Located in the historical heart of Budapest, close to Buda Castle, duallevel, two-bedroom loft apartment that Géza shares with his wife Margit forms part of a property that was originally a family home built in 1928, before eventually being divided into six apartments. Its view takes in the city’s iconic buildings, including the Hungarian Parliament Building, with the River Danube bisecting the city. Unsurprisingly, the stunning views provided the starting point for the couple’s design direction. “We considered the divisions between areas and focused on the panoramic vista,” explains Géza. This led to the couple knocking down every interior wall and rebuilding the space, although the chimney, located in the middle of the apartment, could not be removed. The new glass window was too large to fit through the doors to the apartment, so a crane was used to lift it into place. Fitting the stairs also proved challenging due to the awkward dimensions of the apartment. As a result, the couple cleverly designed the kitchen to surround the chimney, with

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the cupboards under the stairs providing ample storage. The stairs (and kitchen countertop) are made from durable Corian, and the furniture was made bespoke by a carpenter. With Géza’s background in art and design, and Margit’s success as a textile designer, the open-plan home is the perfect reflection of the couple’s style. Indeed, with its white walls and quirky pieces punctuating the space, it’s a classic showcase for their company, Margeza Design Studio, which is known for its minimalist approach, with pops of colour and playful designs. “White gives a neutral background for the strong colours we like to use, while our use of soft lines differs from minimalistic design, making it lighter and softer,” says Géza. In the living room, a living wall (watered by an automatic irrigation system) brings nature into the apartment, while the triple-layered safety glass window simultaneously divides and connects the apartment to the city. A circle motif runs throughout the apartment, appearing on the doors, tables and armchairs. A playful, curved book shelf (designed by the couple) is among the sinuous furniture. And there’s also a practical reason for the lack of


First floor

Second floor

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IDEAS | Betterhomes Magazine


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sharp edges, the window seat in front of the living room window, which seems to float on glass legs, and the raised beds: a robotic vacuum cleaner can move easily around the entire apartment. The window seat is Géza’s favourite spot. “There’s always something interesting to see, such as the ships navigating the River Danube.” Two yellow Girotonda lounge chairs give the room personality, along with a white wool rug designed by Margit featuring a map of Budapest, with a red dot marking the apartment’s location. In the dining room, a Leolux table is surrounded by red Kartell chairs, like the petals of a flower. The arched window frames had previously contained small panes of glass, with dividers but, to maximise the vista, these were replaced with window panes supported by anchors at the top and bottom. “It’s rare for a loft apartment to overlook a park, but

because it’s positioned on a hilltop, we are really lucky,” enthuses Géza. A red radiator adds dynamism to the en-suite bathroom, with an oversized mirror providing the illusion of extra space. Meanwhile, the upper floor bedroom offers a relaxing sanctuary. “You can see the city from the bed, and from the bath – even the Hungarian Parliament Building is visible.” There’s plenty of hidden storage behind sliding doors and also in the guest area, with its sleek desk. “It offers a place to work, but it’s easy to get distracted by the sight of boats floating on the river.” The apartment also boasts two generous-sized terraces, offering a partial panoramic view over the city. “Whether we are having breakfast, with the rising sun or enjoying a drink and a chat with friends, our terraces are the perfect spots for creating the most outstanding experiences.”


Glass vases, from Dhs99, HOME AND SOUL

Don Giovanni magazine rack, Dhs6,399, FORNESETTI at AMARA

Pom pom round rug, Dhs210, NAMSHI

HOME COMFORTS My top décor tip is… Allow as much natural light to enter a home as possible. If in doubt, choose… A neutral background, with spots of strong colours – it’s always a winner. Home is… A place to recharge, relax and regain our strength and let go of the worries of the day.

Sessel armchair, Dhs7,850, THONET SHOWROOM | 49

AREA Lively beachfront community Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) offers something for everyone, while catering to all budgets. From great shopping to watersports and happening hangouts, JBR has it covered. Browse our edit of properties to rent and buy in this stylish neighbourhood.


JUMEIRAH BEACH RESIDENCE Senior Residential Sales and Leasing Consultant at Betterhomes and long-term Jumeirah Beach Residence denizen Nicholas Winter on living in a buzzy community

Beachfront community Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) offers everything you need within a short stroll. Stretching 1.7 km along the Arabian Gulf shoreline, there are six residential blocks: (in order from east to west) Shams, Amwaj, Rimal, Bahar, Sadaf and Murjan – the Arabic names are related to the beach. It’s known for its glamorous location in Dubai Marina, its buzzy boulevard The Walk and, of course, its beach, while the Dubai Tram provides a handy alternative to driving in the area. The community events and celebrations that take place over holiday periods can be busy, but it’s a common misconception that it’s prone to traffic. The advantage of JBR for most residents is that, from the car park to Sheikh Zayed Road, there are typically only two traffic signals and it takes less time to enter and exit the community than others, such as Jumeirah Lake Towers, Emirates Living and Downtown Dubai. The self-contained neighbourhood caters to all budgets. Unsurprisingly, it’s a popular spot for tourists and locals alike, with its many eateries and shops running along the shoreline giving it a Miami Beach feel. The safe, well-maintained area boasts a large cinema complex, including an outdoor screen; a beach club; a park;

a watersports hub; and a wide range of hotels. The neighbourhood covers the gamut of affordable to expensively priced well-known venues. DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Dubai Jumeirah Beach, for example, is just one of three Hilton hotels in JBR and is home to Scottish bar Copper Dog, Japanese hotspot Ramusake and The Maine Oyster Bar & Grill, among other restaurants and bars. The Walk, meanwhile, regularly hosts fantastic free live entertainment, including opera singers, DJs, fireworks and events. Easily accessible by tram, taxi and bus, the community boasts seven nurseries, including awardwinning Toddler Town and Kidville Nursery as well as long-established Jebel Ali Nursery. GEMS Wellington International School and Raffles International School are among the schools located nearby. The vast majority of properties cater to small families, with one- to three-bedroom apartments. However, there are a wide variety of properties, including studio, terraced, duplex, loft and penthouse apartments and villas available. With direct access to the beach, the properties also offer communal swimming pools and gyms and many now have basketball courts.

To rent One-bedroom apartment Two-bedroom apartment Three-bedroom apartment Four-bedroom apartment

Approximate price Dhs80,000 to Dhs110,000 Dhs95,000 to Dhs125,000 Dhs130,000 to Dhs180,000 Dhs160,000 to Dhs220,000

To buy One-bedroom apartment Two-bedroom apartment Three-bedroom apartment Four-bedroom apartment

Approximate price Dhs1.3 million to Dhs1.7 million Dhs1.5 million to Dhs2.5 million Dhs2.2 million to Dhs3.4 million Dhs3 million to Dhs4 million

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Rimal 5

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP170653 Nicholas Winter RERA Permit No. 1599252873

Rimal 6

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP325261 Shahzad Anwar RERA Permit No. 870129488

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5 AED 3, 375,000 Bahar Jumeirah Beach Residence 4 BR + Maid’s Room 2,678sq. ft.

AED 3,199,000 3 BR 1,900 sq. ft.

Ref No. AP223636 Syed Wajih Uddin Ahmed RERA Permit No. 1463462629

Bahar 6

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP240314 Syed Wajih Uddin Ahmed RERA Permit No. 2114373219

AED 1,450,000 1 BR 1,417 sq. ft.

AED 4, 200,000 2 BR 1,844 sq. ft.

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Sadaf 6

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP316277 Cameron Burns RERA Permit No. 163534949

Al Bateen Residences Jumeirah Beach Residence

Ref No. AP355957 Sunil Pravin Jhaveri RERA Permit No. 1880522519

AED 3,400,000 2 BR 1,842 sq. ft.

AED 3,990,000 2 BR 1,780 sq. ft. | 55

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4-Bedroom + Maid’s Room Apartment, Jumeirah Beach Residence

VAC ANT ON TR ANSFER This stunning four-bedroom plus maid’s room family home has been renovated and upgraded throughout. Located on a high floor, with full marina views, it enjoys an abundance of natural light and offers a direct view of the sun rise. With marble flooring and beautiful built-in wardrobes, this apartment will suit those with lavish tastes and those looking for a superior finish. Two master bedrooms come with en-suite bathrooms, while the two other bedrooms share a bathroom. There is a separate maid’s room as well as a separate laundry room. What’s more, the apartment is offered by a motivated seller, who has reduced the price from Dhs400,000 to Dhs3,300,000. In addition to JBR’s The Beach, the apartment is situated next to the community gym, supermarket and grassed area for children to play on. Indeed, this property is perfect for families and those who like some of the finer and stylish aspects of living.

AED 3, 300,000

T H E D E TA I L S Approx size: 2,758 sq. ft. Reference No: AP288362 RERA Permit No. 0131041057

Listed by Nicholas Winter

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Sadaf 8

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP28851 Rita Mouawad RERA Permit No. 0019025956

Amwaj 4

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP356795 Cameron Burns RERA Permit No. 1657859736

5 AED 3,000,000 Sadaf Jumeirah Beach Residence 4 BR + Maid’s Room 2,713 sq. ft.

Ref No. AP354609 Fabio Lombardi RERA Permit No. 0185506815

5 AED 1, 850,000 Murjan Jumeirah Beach Residence 2 BR 1,382 sq. ft.

Ref No. AP357299 Sara Nanakalei RERA Permit No. 0701936374

AED 3, 700,000 3 BR 2,249 sq. ft.

AED 1,600,000 2 BR 1,396 sq. ft. | 57

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3-Bedroom + Maid’s Room Apartment, Jumeirah Beach Residence

EVERYTHING ON YOUR DOORSTEP Located in Murjan 1, this stunning apartment has three bedrooms plus a maid’s room and a balcony. Available from 1st July, the apartment has a built-up area of 1,921 sq. ft. – its spacious layout includes a huge open-plan living and dining area that looks into the kitchen, and boasts direct views of the marina. The master bedroom and the maid’s room offer en-suite bathrooms, while the other two rooms share a bathroom. With basement parking and an elevator serice, the apartment comes with two parking spaces, around-the-clock security, a fully equipped gym, a swimming pool with landscaped, secluded resort-style pool decking, and a 24-hour supermarket. Residents choose Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) for its prime waterfront location; upmarket apartments, with spectacular Mediterranean and Arab architecture; and the allure of city and beachside living that combines retail, hospitality, and entertainment options with feature-rich apartments.

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AED 2,050,000

T H E D E TA I L S Approx size: 1,922 sq. ft. Reference No: AP353433 RERA Permit No. 1906122917

Listed by Rihab Noureddine

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Sadaf 6

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP349546 Wahid Amirzada RERA Permit No. 1973509170

Amwaj 5

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. HA357047 Natalia Matveev RERA Permit No. 796985362

AED 175,000 3 BR 1,882 sq. ft.

AED 240,000 3 BR 1,905 sq. ft.

Sadaf 4

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP356568 Georgina Taylor RERA Permit No. 1635395588

Amwaj 5

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. HA357048 Natalia Matveev RERA Permit No. 796985362

AED 145,000 3 BR + Maid’s Room 1,797 sq. ft.

AED 190,000 1 BR 1,700 sq. ft. | 59

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Shams 1

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP213145 Jawad Motiwala RERA Permit No. 1328724572

Sadaf 1

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP277886 Fabio Lombardi RERA Permit No. 1163378614

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AED 150,000 3 BR 1,884 sq. ft.

AED 180,000 3 BR 1,930 sq. ft.

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4-Bedroom + Maid’s Room Apartment

D I S TI N C TI V E D E S I G N This four-bedroom, fully furnished penthouse for rent in Rimal 4 is elaborately and elegantly furnished and has undergone full modifications. The living room has a small balcony, two fully functional fountains and a fantastic view of the sea, while a private terrace boasts direct access to one part of the master bedroom. The main part of the master bedroom, meanwhile, has a stunning uninterrupted view of the sea and of Palm Jumeirah. One bedroom has been converted into a gym, complete with state-of-the-art machines for a full body workout. The other bedroom has balcony access offering a beautiful view of the sea. All the bathrooms include their own Jacuzzi bathtub and private steam room. The maid’s quarters sleeps two and has access to the service area and its own bathroom. There is one storage room in the apartment, and another in the service area, which is connected to an exclusive service elevator that stops at the four bedrooms.

AED 280,000

T H E D E TA I L S Approx size: 549 sq. ft. Reference No: AP232799 RERA Permit No. 1136034443

Listed by Urvashi Sidhapara | 61

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Bahar 1

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP29611 Fabio Lombardi RERA Permit No. 1379798799

Sadaf 4

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP174770 Urvashi Sidhapara RERA Permit No. 0782164908

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AED 189,000 2 BR 2,896 sq. ft.

Shams 4

Jumeirah Beach Residence Ref No. AP173566 Natalia Matveev RERA Permit No. 2003644240

1 AED 160,000 Shams Jumeirah Beach Residence 3 BR 1,986 sq. ft.

Ref No. AP303131 Jawad Motiwala RERA Permit No. 1328724572

AED 180,000 1 BR 1,603 sq. ft.

AED 150,000 3 BR 1,884 sq. ft.

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4-Bedroom Apartment, Jumeirah Beach Residence

FO R A LL YO U R N E E D S This spacious and warm four-bedroom penthouse apartment is located in Roda Amwaj Hotel, Jumeirah Beach Residence. A fully furnished serviced apartment, it includes three parking spaces and is available for short and longterm rental. Other features include a fully equipped kitchen, with cutlery, crockery and utensils. Further benefits include a twice weekly maid service, with all utility bills included in the rent. All apartments offer a sea or marina view with full access to the on-site gym and swimming pool. Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) is vibrant and dynamic both night and day, thanks to its key feature: a beautiful stretch of beach that runs parallel to the community and includes parking. In addition, The Walk at JBR boasts a series of restaurants, cafes, retail shops, beauty salons and other convenience outlets built at the ground floor level of the residential towers, which is popular for its al fresco dining options.

AED 550,000

T H E D E TA I L S Approx size: 5,640 sq. ft. Reference No: HA357049 RERA Permit No. 0796985362

Listed by Natalia Matveev | 63

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Three homes within 15 minutes’ drive of Kings’ School Al Barsha


RES Villa Al Barsha Rasha Moslyh Ref No. VI335954 RERA Permit No. 1091795356

AED 25,000,000

6 BR 9,980 sq. ft.

Michael Bloy, secondary headmaster at Kings’ School Al Barsha, on ensuring all students enjoy success What sets your school apart from others in the city?

We are a proudly inclusive school. As such, we seek to find, develop and support all of our students’ passions. We offer over 24 A-levels to support this ethos and we ensure that all our students are able to pursue their first choice at GCSE and A-level. In addition, we have a highly regarded learning support department, providing sporting, academic and arts scholarships, tailored programmes, and an extensive range of extracurricular activities to ensure we achieve our mission statement of ‘the best by every child’.

Tell us about your team…

We have a highly qualified team of inspired and passionate teachers, all of whom are UK trained. The school is the only educational facility in the Middle East to pursue the Visible Learning programme, which offers a rich and varied range of opportunities, enabling students to express their personality and take ownership of their learning.

Is there anything else parents should know about?

Kings’ School Al Barsha has world-class facilities, excellent teachers and a very strong reputation in the community,

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having already achieved strong GCSE examination grades with our first cohort. We know that these things bring interested parents to our door. Our community makes both parents and students want to join our school. All Kings’ schools (Kings’ School Al Barsha, Kings’ School Dubai and Kings’ School Nad Al Sheba) are committed to fostering a culture of kindness: our students are polite, kind and highly caring individuals, who have a strong sense of values and moral purpose. While our facilities are outstanding, it is the feeling and sense of community that makes Kings’ School Al Barsha special. At just four years’ young, we are a rapidly improving school, as recognised by the KHDA through its annual inspections report.

HUM Villa Al Barsha Urvashi Sidhapara Ref No. VI357055 RERA Permit No. 1886119330

AED 350,000

5BR + Maid’s Room 7,800 sq. ft.

What do your key facilities include?

Our outstanding facilities range from hi-tech, air-conditioned classrooms and labs to dedicated performing arts spaces and leading sporting facilities. Our students enjoy access to personal computers and iPads, a library, café, sixth form common room and an onsite guidance counsellor, with parents also having their own community café. For September 2018, we will be expanding our social spaces and student facilities to include a purpose-built hall, a large canteen and classrooms, such as a second food technology studio and two further state-of-the-art science labs.

PRC Apartments Al Barsha Cameron Burns Ref No. AP352465 RERA Permit No. 0101221011

AED 75,000

1BR 595 sq. ft.

SHOP | Betterhomes Magazine


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Betterhomes Magazine - May'18  

As we welcome the start of Ramadan this month, we’re getting into the spirit of togetherness at Betterhomes magazine. With this in mind, Nah...

Betterhomes Magazine - May'18  

As we welcome the start of Ramadan this month, we’re getting into the spirit of togetherness at Betterhomes magazine. With this in mind, Nah...