ARCHITECTURE, DESIGN, INTERIORS + PROPERTY
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A MOTIVATE PUBLICATION
ISSUE 211 / JULY/AUGUST 2021
The Style Issue
Marrying science and art Abid Javed’s sculptures reflect his fascination for biology while expressing various emotions
Weaving worlds Qasimi’s Spring/Summer 2022 collection is inspired by indigenous Emirati crafts woven by female artisans
The scent of space UNIFORM’s oil-based perfumes use scent as cultural expression
Eclectic energy Thomas Trad’s apartment maintains an assorted balance of colour and materials
The right mix Ahmad AbouZanat has combined the soft and the raw to create a warm atmosphere in this NYC apartment
A sea of dreams
Amanruya continues to immerse its guests in the richness of Turkey’s artisanship and building techniques
Aegean authenticity Kalesma Mykonos is a new boutique hotel with a design inspired by Cycladic traditions
Editor-in-Chief Obaid Humaid Al Tayer Managing Partner and Group Editor Ian Fairservice Group Director Andrew Wingrove Editor Aidan Imanova Designer Hannah Perez Sub-editor Max Tuttle Chief Commercial Officer Anthony Milne Group Sales Manager Manish Chopra Senior Sales Manager Neha Kannoth Sales Representative - Italy Daniela Prestinoni General Manager - Production S Sunil Kumar Assistant Production Manager Binu Purandaran Production Supervisor Venita Pinto Contributors Karine Monié
identity magazine is printed by Emirates Printing Press. Member of:
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Photo by Young Habibti
Welcome to the Summer Style Issue! With the easing of restrictions and the gradual reopening of global borders (finally!), we turn our gaze to the hospitality sector which – like many other industries – has taken a hard hit due to the pandemic. The hotels featured in this issue have design at the forefront yet also maintain strong ties to the cultural and building heritage of their respective contexts, teaching us about the importance of carrying forward traditions and learning from the past. Amanruya in Bodrum, for example; led by the vision of late Turkish architect Turgut Cansever (the only architect to receive the Aga Khan Award for Architecture three times in his career) and realised by his daughter and her husband, the holiday retreat embraces local know-how and historical references. “If a designer seeks a solution that belongs to the place, then history is the logical place to start,” the designers said of Amanruya’s incorporation of Turkish design. Not far from Bodrum, in the coast of Batroun, Lebanese designer and musician Carl Gerges is renovating two structures from the 17th century into an idyllic getaway that also focuses on connections to nature and history, employing traditional building techniques of the time. In other parts of the magazine, we look at London-based fashion brand Qasimi, which has collaborated with Emirati craftswomen from the Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council’s ‘Bidwa Social Development Programme’ for its Spring/Summer 2021 collection. The collection pays homage to the UAE’s indigenous crafts while imbuing it with a contemporary aesthetic. Meanwhile in Sweden, Stockholm-based creative Haisam Mohammed is gaining traction for his brand UNIFORM – which he launched during the pandemic last year. UNIFORM is greatly influenced by the social circumstances that architecture presents and aims to redefine the idea of luxury within the perfume industry. On our cover this month is the apartment of Lebanese product designer Thomas Trad; located in the outskirts of Beirut, and surrounded by a spectacular landscape of mountains, Trad’s home reflects his attitude towards design and features an eclectic selection of furniture and memorabilia which he has collected with his father over the years – as well as pieces of his furniture. “In my opinion, while creating a space, we shouldn’t be limited to one style, pattern, trend or colour palette. There should always be room for evolution, without being bound to one set design,” Trad explains. Finally, I would like to remind everyone that the nominations for the 2021 identity Design Awards will be open this month and we are super excited to see all your entries! We will also be announcing our roster of international judges, so stay tuned for that as well. The team at identity wishes everyone a wonderful (and well deserved) summer break – and we hope you enjoy this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it together.
Aidan Imanova Editor
Photography by Charbel Saade
On the cover: Product designer Thomas Trad’s apartment in Lebanon.
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Fabrics Wallcoverings Furniture
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Coastal dreams A
rchitect and musician Carl Gerges is slowly making a name for himself for his determined approach to architecture, and his latest endeavour is not unlike his modest yet meaningful collection of projects – which showcases a distinct cultural and environmental sensitivity while preserving the traditional and historic elements of the structures in which he intervenes. Batroun Boutique Hotel is a destination hotel that’s set on the historical coast of Batroun in the north of Lebanon and will see the renovation of two structures from the 17th century transformed into an idyllic getaway where guests can connect with history and nature. The seaside property features a golden stone structure and a white cement plastered courtyard, authentically restored using the same locally sourced sandstone and artisanal wooden shutters.This allows for privacy amid the populated old town while preserving the cross-vault architecture that is typical of Lebanese houses of the time. Similarly, the understated material palette is informed by local building traditions. The guest rooms are set across two floors featuring sweeping views over the sea and gardens. The spa is also set on the water and offers a variety of sea treatments. Connecting the separate houses is a white, raw cement extension that creates a focal point for guests staying on either side of the property and provides a meeting point in the form of a leisurely café. The entryway leading into the courtyard introduces guests to a more intimate space, with lancet arches giving way to small private booths. The bar is designed to blend organically with its white-wall surroundings, while a narrow staircase leading up to the rooftop pool allows guests to enjoy unobstructed sea views on one side and the central sanctuary on the other. Inspired by botanical drawings that also date back to the 17th century, as well as the fauna and flora typical of the region, the property’s natal language is abundant with lush vegetation such as water lilies in the central pond – which are reminiscent of the Ottoman influence on the Lebanese urban fabric – as well as succulents and pampas grass that absorb and reflect sunlight during the different hours of the day, while the grounded cacti reflect the characteristic of Lebanese coastal villages.
THE STYLE ISSUE
A love for ceramics F Vases by Mary-Lynn Massoud & Rasha Nawam
‘Lola’ table lamp by Sayar & Garibeh
or the fourth Collectible Salon, held digitally, the fair showcased ‘Ceramics from Lebanon’ by House of Today, a collective exhibition featuring the works of Lebanese designers including Sayar & Garibeh, Mary-Lynn Massoud and Rasha Nawam, as well as Hala Matta. The exhibition is dedicated to the production of contemporary ceramic objects in order to demonstrate the cultural significance of hand-made ceramics, and to generate a sense of pride among artists and artisans alike. The objects in ‘Ceramics from Lebanon’ express specific functions and contexts, presenting an interplay of rugged shapes, vibrant colours and dynamic textures. Sayar & Garibeh exhibited their table lamp, which is part of the design duo’s ‘Lola’ series that features objects made of terracotta and hay, with the lamp
also including wicker and hemp fibres. Encompassing Stephanie Sayar and Charbel Garibeh’s combined vision of ‘naïve’ and experimental design, the lamp is also exemplary of their humorous approach to design and their delightful use of materials and forms. Designers Mary-Lynn Massoud and Rasha Nawan, who trained in ceramics in France and Beirut respectively, presented their ‘Dancing Vases’ series which features a selection of sculptural and decorative vases made in stoneware and covered in coloured or white porcelain and later glazed. The founder of collaborative pottery studio Namika Atelier, ceramicist Hala Matta is committed to local craftsmanship and vernacular methods of artistic production. Her showcased works include the ‘Calice’ vase, glazed and raku fired ‘Play Time’ totems, the ‘Raku’ vase and a mural.
Pieces by Hala Matta
Photography by Carl Halal
A luxe getaway This refined property offers guests a serene and private holiday retreat
ith travel only slowly reaching a level of normalcy, unwinding in the quaint haven of Dubai’s Creek Club Villas is a family-friendly, hassle-free option offering an abundance of world-class resorts in the emirate. From pristine architectural symmetry to the sophisticated aura exuded at this bespoke holiday home property, Park Hyatt offers its guests a reinvention of Europe’s classical features – making it ideal for a summer escape close to home. The villas are designed to suit all your needs and, to ensure there’s plenty of space, a fully equipped kitchen is fitted-in, allowing guests to enjoy the benefits of being away from home while making it the ideal personalised holiday to experience in serene seclusion. The resort provides a choice of 12 different properties. While enjoying a host of onboard amenities – from temperature-controlled swimming pools to four spacious bedrooms at the villas – guests have the opportunity to overlook the stunning lush greenery of the golf course, with in-room dining facilities to suit their every need as they unwind during their retreat.
Perfect for creating memories that last, this luxe property allows guests to lay back in plentiful space. Inside, there’s an abundance of natural light, matched to a neutral palette of high-end finishings. Here, guests will find an idyllic home in which to take in Dubai’s skyline views and spend hours lounging in the sun at their private pools. With a plethora of on-board activities, visitors are sure to be entertained, whether at the club’s gym that’s perfect for fitness enthusiasts, or enjoying adrenaline-fuelled sports such as golf, tennis, and padel tennis that let you break a sweat and keep in balance during your stay. Guests with furry friends will be pleased to know that the villas can also accommodate them thanks to a unique pet-friendly policy – ensuring no member of the family is left out and that everyone can lounge together in style. Depending on the date of booking, guests can find out more details and make a reservation at www.dubaicreekliving.ae or +971 4 602 1234. THE STYLE ISSUE
A roaring legacy A
collaboration between architect India Mahdavi and avant-garde Italian chef Massimo Bottura has given birth to a new era of Ferrari’s iconic Cavallino restaurant in Maranello – the trattoria that has long marked the emotions, success and memories of the history and legacy of Ferrari and its pioneering founder, Enzo Ferrari. The Cavallino has been an iconic landmark for the automotive brand since 1942, when Enzo Ferrari took over the land of the former Fondo Cavani and also annexed the small farmhouse which first served as a canteen, changing room and training centre for the workers at Ferrari. It was later, in 1950, when the Cavallino Restaurant officially opened to the public; a place where Enzo Ferrari would meet with staff, clients and friends for lunch in the private room where he loved to watch the Grands Prix. Referencing the emotional spirit and symbolism of the
PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANILO SCARPATI
location, Mahdavi’s contemporary reinterpretation of the space brings back the authentic simplicity of the cult location that has become part of the Maranello legend, paired with Bottura’s progressive vision which embraces tradition beyond the nostalgia. The old farmhouse building now sports a new red façade, playing with the traditional vocabulary of the Italian trattoria and its architectural codes and furniture as well as the spirit of the brand. From the entrance, the restaurant’s rooms are connected via a series of arches that guide visitors to their tables. The floor is covered with traditional terracotta tiles, alternating between earth and ivory tiles in a chequerboard pattern, like a well-ironed tablecloth, while the walls feature poplar burl wood – a reference to Italian maestro Gio Ponti. The redesign also features oak panelling on the walls where the tables lean, and bench
backrests made of yellow leather with rounded and graphic shapes, inspired by the steering wheel of a car, that outline the rooms with a joyful ambiance. The walls are a celebration of memories, including collections of photographs, posters, souvenirs and memorabilia that reveal the spirit of the place and the story behind Ferrari's industrial and sporting adventures. The garden, redesigned by landscape architect Marco Bay, forms a patio-like open-air dining room – a haven of greenery in the shade of a pergola. Upstairs, a balcony borders two private lounges on a rooftop terrace. Located on the ground floor, the Enzo Room features poplar wooden panelling and is where the founder used to sit in front of the fireplace, watching the races. Mahdavi has brought this intimate room back to life through the creation of a private dining room
with movable wooden slats, opening it onto a sunny driveway. Mahdavi’s redesign included infusing the Cavallino with a new identity while maintaining the brand’s heritage and visual vocabulary. The architect focused on the Ferrari logo – which has been digitised, enlarged and pixelated to create a visual language for the restaurant. The logo is applied across various surfaces and materials, including the perforated metal of the entrance gate, the glass mosaic walls, the restaurant’s wallpaper and the Burano lace that adorns the white net curtains on the windows. The reinvented trattoria is a joyful and optimistic space that also reflects Mahdavi’s own approach to architecture, which combines bold colour and a whimsical approach. The architect has imbued the same attitude here, creating a series of furniture, objects and custommade elements in her signature style, produced exclusively for Ferrari.
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An ode to After two decades in the world of interiors, Pierre Yovanovitch has just launched his furniture brand, which comprises 45 timeless pieces with the highest level of craftsmanship WORDS BY KARINE MONIÉ
atience is often the key to success. And this was especially the case for Pierre Yovanovitch, the renowned French interior architect who realised one of his dreams last May – two decades after starting his studio – by launching a new brand, Pierre Yovanovitch Mobilier. “I wanted to wait until my agency was at the right stage,” he confesses. “These works started as a way for me to ensure the design elements of a client’s interior were of the highest quality and completely unique to the spaces, though the pieces I created quickly evolved into a form of creative expression, in and of themselves. [The furniture brand will allow me] to bring these designs to the wider public, beyond the context of my interiors and beyond offering these pieces through a gallery.” At the heart of everything Yovanovitch does is his commitment to craft and longevity, and his first furniture, lighting and home accessories collection is no exception. “We create every piece to be loved and lived with for a lifetime,” he says. Made with as many natural and local materials as possible – such as local woods from eco-certified forests, wool, linen, silk, cotton, hemp, mohair and organic solvents – the 45 pieces were brought to life in collaboration with France and Switzerland’s finest craftspeople. Among these masters are ceramicist Armelle Benoit, textile specialists who have been awarded Meilleurs Ouvriers de France and speciality glass-blowers. “It was important for me not to compromise on the quality of the furniture, despite scaling to sell the works internationally,” Yovanovitch says. “For these new works, I also wanted to look beyond my signature use of wood to incorporate new materials, such as polished bronze, gypsum (for the mirrors and side tables) and patinated metals.” The curved Daniel three-seater sofa, the colourful Hopper chair and the sophisticated Quinn coffee table in rose-tinted cast glass and patinated metal form part of the collection, which was inspired by Yovanovitch’s roots in Provence (in the south of France) and “particularly the nature there, the sunsets and [the] forests with their rich colours and diverse textures,” as he describes. A true milestone in Yovanovitch’s career, this launch is just the beginning of a new chapter, which is already full of promise. “Later this summer, we will open our first showroom space in Paris so customers can experience the furniture first-hand,” Yovanovitch says. “We also hope to open additional locations down the line, particularly in New York in the not-so-distant future.”
© Jean-Pierre Vaillancourt
THE STYLE ISSUE
Marrying science and art Through sculptural objects with organic forms, Abid Javed reflects his fascination for biology while expressing various emotions WORDS BY KARINE MONIÉ
ow can a PhD in biochemistry lead to becoming an artist? Abid Javed’s path reveals an answer. Born in Hong Kong to parents from Pakistan – where he spent his early days – the now London-based ceramicist confesses to always having been a visual person. “I realised it when I started to draw during my childhood,” Javed says. “At 10 years old, I took part in one of the school’s competitions that consisted of imagining and drawing a sea world. At that time, winning made me understand that it was actually fun [to create] whatever comes to your mind.” His mother also encouraged him to write short poems in English and in Urdu, helping to nurture his curiosity and imagination, and he went on to study art in high school and college. His passion for science, however, led him to relegate creativity to a hobby
while focusing on biochemistry, and he ultimately graduated with a PhD in the subject. This discipline became the heart of Javed’s artistic work. Throughout the years, he practiced making sculptures and vessels in ceramics. “During my PhD, I was working with molecules in biology, and in the back of my mind I always wanted to bring them out of the microscope and into our physical space,” he says. “Interestingly, it was actually common practice for scientists in the mid-20th century (before technology prevailed) to collaborate with engineers and designers to build physical models of molecules using metal, plaster or clay [in order] to describe what they observed under the microscope. I wanted to take a step further in the abstract realm and re-visualise these ‘microscopic bodies’ as abstract objects, through abstract sculptural forms.”
Working mostly with clay, Javed creates his pieces by hand, using an earthy palette of white, black, red and terracotta. “I recently started to look into introducing colour in clay, especially blue, which is very common in Islamic arts, to see how it can affect the overall impressions of the forms I make,” he says. “I believe that handmade objects hold a lot more precedence than those obtained by using industrial instruments. Albeit efficient, industrial machines take away the human element and the uniqueness behind each object. I realised this while observing village craftsmen carefully beading fabric when I was in Pakistan. I was truly impressed by the way their hands moved and [by] their precision.” In addition to his connection to Middle Eastern culture, Javed is also deeply inspired by the work of Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, Jean (Hans)
Arp, Naum Gabo, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Valentine Schlegel and Isamu Noguchi, among others. “All of these incredible designers and artists revolutionised the way we see nature and how nature can be brought into our everyday living,” says Javed. “When people look at my work, I want them to imagine the microscopic storylines that exist amongst us, be curious and be compelled to look into the context behind these biology-inspired forms and shapes.”
Currently working on his Pleomorph series and producing objects for the London Design Festival in September, Javed is also venturing into furniture design with some prototypes. And his dreams don’t stop there: “I would love to make large-scale, multifaceted outdoor or indoor sculptures that form part of the space and environment surrounding them, as well as collaborate on projects with Middle Eastern designers and craftsmen to explore the ideas and richness in Islamic art,” Javed says. THE STYLE ISSUE
COMMUNITY BUILDING Born in a time of isolation, the 2021 Serpentine Pavilion intends to bring people together by focusing on the themes of identity, community, belonging and gathering WORDS BY KARINE MONIÉ PHOTOGRAPHY BY IWAN BAAN
Serpentine Pavilion 2021, designed by Counterspace, exterior view © Counterspace
his year is one of premieres: On view until 17 October in London’s Kensington Gardens, the 20th Serpentine Pavilion was designed by the youngest architect to take on the task yet. At the helm of Johannesburgbased practice Counterspace, Sumayya Vally responded to the brief of creating a temporary 300-square metre structure – which is to be used as a cafe and meeting space by day and a forum for learning, debate and entertainment at night – following in the footsteps of greats including Frida Escobedo (in 2018), Bjarke Ingels Group (2016), Ai Weiwei (2012) and Zaha Hadid, who was the first
architect to be commissioned for the design in 2000. Drawing inspiration from London’s modern and historical meeting places – including worship spaces, markets, restaurants, bookshops and cultural institutions – the Pavilion features abstract sculptural forms with mostly recycled, weather-treated materials. The primary structure is in steelwork salvaged from other projects, while the cladding is made from carbon-negative cork produced as a by-product of the wine industry, microcement derived from lime and waste from marble production. “It’s a circular form carved into the ground, and it’s made up of forms that articulate different scales of
interaction: some are about a group discussion, some are about sitting on the floor and having a meal,” Vally describes. At more than six metres high, it is one of the tallest Pavilions in recent years. “The shapes and forms in the Pavilion are a result of abstracting, adding, superimposing and splicing architectural elements, varying in scales in intimacy, from various locations,” says Vally. “By engaging with stories of migration – the displacement and re-placement of people – the design symbolically folds London onto the Serpentine lawn to bring together a multitude of histories, referencing diasporas and geographies within and beyond the city.” THE STYLE ISSUE
Serpentine Pavilion 2021 designed by Counterspace, interior view © Counterspace
For the first time this year, the Pavilion extends beyond its usual limits, with four fragments designed around an intimate scale of gathering and installed in different locations of the British capital: and designed around an intimate scale of gathering: New Beacon Books in Finsbury Park, one of the first Black publishers and booksellers in the UK; Notting Hill’s community hub and venue The Tabernacle; The Albany arts centre in Deptford; and the Becontree Forever arts and culture hub at Valence Library in Dagenham.
“Architecture is about being together and about being apart, about making together and moving apart,” says Vally. “To imagine architecture as decentralised, as agile, is to see things in relation to each other.” To complement the experience, the Pavilion also engages with a set of sonic geographies of selected neighbourhoods through the sound programme Listening to the City. “The design process has also extended into thinking through more equitable, sustainable and imaginative institutional structures by
creating Support Structures for Support Structures, a grant and fellowship programme that supports artists who work in, support and hold communities in London through their work,” adds Vally. From the design to the construction, the whole process lasted less than 20 weeks and, like previous Pavilions, this one is intended to be relocated and repurposed at the end of the exhibition period, reaffirming that social sustainability is at the heart of this one-of-akind project. id
The business of architecture With over 30 years of global design and management leadership experience, Darryl Custer has joined KEO’s Dubai office as the executive director of its Design Division. Here we speak to Custer about his plans for KEO and the importance of good leadership and community building in architecture.
Confidential project in the UAE
ith over 30 years of experience globally in design, what is your vision for KEO’s Design Division in the UAE? One of the reasons I joined KEO Design is because of its rich history in the region and its broad set of multi-disciplinary services. When I think about KEO Design, I believe our number one focus should be on supporting the communities we work in while delivering on the promise to our clients. Although KEO is already known across the region for its excellent service and delivery, I hope to bring my global perspective to our clients and the communities we serve with a forward-thinking “next-gen” set of design ideas. Regional markets, consumer and customer demands are evolving rapidly, and I want the KEO Design Division to be properly positioned to successfully deliver - from early conceptual design to opening day and beyond. Can you tell us more about the Refined Leadership Model and its importance within the division? As markets and clients evolve so must our team. The new leadership structure brings an efficient and simplified structure, to allow the division to truly work as a team while focusing on our client’s needs. I have always felt that any organisation’s success comes from leadership teams consisting of
different and complementary personality types. Our new model includes a diverse group of individuals that enables us to balance internal operational excellence with external best-in-class design delivery. In addition, the new structure is meant to give our subject matter experts the opportunity to flourish in the market while also providing a platform to train and bring up the next generation of talent from within. What are some changes or shifts taking place within the company now? We continue to refine our systems and are investing heavily in BIM modelling training while exploring other software advancements to be prepared for the future. As noted earlier, KEO has a very strong Architect of Record multi-disciplinary service model and going forward we see an opportunity to improve the transition from early design to late delivery. In addition to improving our platform of delivery we are also bolstering our conceptual design practice to better enable good decisions early in the process. This comprehensive frontto-back model is meant to deliver future-thinking, efficient world-class results to our clients, with less stop-gaps in between. With your background in design, what do you consider to be the most important design consideration when working on large-scale
projects and masterplans? Good design supports communities. Of course, our projects should look great, be functional and meet our clients’ needs; however, the number one priority is servicing the local user, consumer, tenant or buyer in an appropriate manner. Some other key elements of good results include good circulation both horizontally and vertically; specifically, walkability and connectivity to their adjacent context. The two examples included in this article showcase two KEO design projects where community and placemaking are the focus. This is very important to KEO Design as we continue to reinforce our position across the region.
Darryl Custer, AIA
KEO International Consultants / T +971 4 306 9888 THE STYLE ISSUE
WEAVING WORLDS London-based fashion brand Qasimi’s Spring/Summer 2022 collection is partly inspired by indigenous Emirati crafts woven by female artisans from the Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council WORDS BY AIDAN IMANOVA
eflecting its Middle Eastern roots, Londonbased fashion brand Qasimi has drawn inspiration for its Spring/Summer 2022 collection from the Emirati crafts of Safafah and Faroukha – traditional weaving and macramé techniques, hand-crafted by female artisans from the Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council’s ‘Bidwa Social Development Programme’. Both Safafah – a traditional craft of weaving strips of dried palm fronds, originally used to create functional household items such as baskets and mats – and Faroukha – the traditional cotton or silk tassel handwoven to decorate the neckline of Emirati men’s traditional attire, kandoura – lend themselves as the primary inspirations behind the collection. The woven safeefah pieces are used across the skirts and the female and male jackets, as well as in accentuating details such as pockets and the creation of accessories such as the tote-clutch bags. Faroukha has been used to craft its drawstring pouches, forming a vivid two-tone macramé. Taking a craft form rooted in local cultural identity and imbuing it with a contemporary design aesthetic furthers Irthi’s efforts in preserving Emirati cultural heritage and highlights the work of craftswomen in the UAE within a renewed environment.
“Our latest collaboration with Qasimi offers a platform for explorative and experimental artisanal intervention that combines traditional craft techniques with new materials and medium to make the handmade traditions of women artisans in the UAE more relevant and desirable in the modern world,” says HE Reem BinKaram, director of NAMA Women Advancement Establishment (NAMA). “Empowering our craftswomen with contemporary design training is enabling us to write a fresh, modern narrative for indigenous Emirati crafts while upholding the rich legacy of our cultural and artistic heritage on the international stage.” “I think it’s important to recognise the work of craftsmen and women who have spent their lives perfecting a specific craft. It’s essential to not only support them by collaborating – but also to give credit and not try to emulate or copy their work,” adds Hoor Al Qasimi, creative director at Qasimi, who manages the brand that was founded in 2015 by the late Khalid Al Qasimi. THE STYLE ISSUE
The collection itself also explores the wider relationships in the MENASA region by looking at the Indian subcontinent and taking cues from its colours such as pink, orange and pale blue, as well as traditional elements such as the Angrakha style and the Nehru collar. Rather than only focusing on a single culture, Qasimi goes back to its multicultural origins with this collection to find common ground amongst many different cultures in the Arab world and the surrounding region, where synergies and shared crafts can be discovered. For example, the safeefah craft that
inspired parts of the collection can also be seen in areas across Southeast Asia as well as in East Africa. Built around architectural lines, the collection offers a minimal aesthetic and oversized shapes. With references also drawing from Islamic architecture, it transcends one specific country or continent by focusing on shared identities. Qasimi’s S/S 2022 collection was launched by a virtual show featuring a film that gave audiences a sneak peek of the new pieces, while highlighting the artisans with whom the brand collaborated. id
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THE SCENT OF SPACE
UNIFORM’s oil-based perfumes use scent as cultural expression WORDS BY AIDAN IMANOVA
NIFORM has architecture and in-between spaces at the heart of its inspiration. Launched last year by young Stockholm-based creative Haisam Mohammed, the brand focuses on expressing the diasporic cultures of Sweden and Mohammed’s own East African heritage by reminiscing on the scents that drift through the cracks of the doors of homes and into the stairwells of Sweden’s highrise buildings. With the aim of revolutionising what now constitutes the luxury perfume industry, its oilbased perfumes are created by award-winning perfumers in the French city of Grasse and are
portable, unisex, 100% vegan and cruelty- and alcohol-free, while also being tailored for sensitive skin. Its most recent collection focuses on the home, with items such as incense sticks and soap. In this interview, UNIFORM’s founder Mohammed reveals the inspiration and vision behind the brand. Can you talk to us about how the brand came to life? What were your intentions when creating UNIFORM and how does it reflect your own identity? UNIFORM started as a passion project. Throughout my life, I have always sought new media and formats through which I can express and communicate different
cultural messages. I have designed, printed and created physical experiences for as far back as I can remember. But the one format that always stuck in the back of my head was scents. Without knowing too much about the industry or the steps needed to start making perfume, I began writing down my life experiences and realised how scent had always been a key element. The root of my intention for UNIFORM has always been to showcase the depth and beauty of the references from my heritage. Smell is such an important part of the diaspora, and I was surprised to find out that our stories were not represented in the perfume industry.
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Tell us about your background and how that has influenced your approach to scent. My interest in scents started in the stairwells of the high-rises [of Sweden], beginning with the one that I grew up in, and has evolved through all the others that I’ve visited since. The smell of food being prepared, the mixture of spices, and the lighting of incense used to slip through the cracks of the doors of the families that inhabit these high-rise [buildings] and blend into a special scent that I have carried with me throughout my life; hence, the name UNIFORM. Instead of drawing scent inspiration from the typical French botanic gardens, my inspiration comes from the scents found in the stairwells of the high-rises (which are often home to diverse and multicultural families).
How does architecture and design play a role in the inspiration behind UNIFORM? In an architectural sense, the brand stands on the idea of the stairwell, not just as a place where you move between different levels but also a gathering [space]. [It is a] place where great conversations are taking place about everything – from art to science to politics. In Sweden, a defunding of youth centres has been ongoing for years. Every winter, when the youth centres were closed and we had nowhere to go, we always used a random stairwell as our meeting place/office/think centre until we got kicked out. What is the vision behind your new collection? You have now expanded into items for the home. When we soft-launched,
a couple of weeks before the pandemic, our aim was to present our perfume oil as an ‘on the go’ product. Our target audience was people who movet hroughout the day a lot.t. From one meeting to the next. From one first impression to another. And so on. Unfortunately, that didn’t become the case. Everybody was spending time in their home. But on the bright side, people had discovered us and our scents, and were asking if we could produce more homeware. And that’s what we did. Products that we thought would come out in two or three years were pushed up and created straight away. I had always wanted to bring serenity and joy to homes, and I feel that we managed to do that with our home collection.
Haisam Mohammed, founder of UNIFORM THE STYLE ISSUE
Lighting incense is common inside the homes of people of the diaspora, and so it became our invitation for people to become a part of the beautiful experience of incense, by introducing a collection of four carefully produced incense sticks to light up and enjoy. Talk us through UNIFORM’s signature scents. Maghrib, which means ‘sunset’ in Arabic, is our first creation. It was inspired by the experiences of watching the sunset from the rooftops of the high-rises during summer nights. It has cedarwood and tobacco in it and is the scent that I most clearly recognise from my childhood home and, I later came to realise, the homes of many more ethnic families as they were cooking, burning incense and blending spices in their home.
Cassis is inspired by the first millisecond of the scent you experience when disembarking a plane at a new destination – preferably in the south of France! It is a fig scent with elements of sandalwood and coconut. Limbo is inspired by my personal experience of the conflicting emotions that I have experienced while commuting between the city centre and its outskirts, where I live. You either feel like it is an escape or a refuge; therefore, the name. Limbo is our most complicated scent. It features a very interesting combination of rhubarb, hay and sandalwood. What is the meaning of luxury for you and how does UNIFORM reflect it? Luxury is a tricky term. Often it is something
illusive and made up. In our case, we want to redefine what luxury must look like or where it comes from. In a standard measure, UNIFORM would not be considered ‘luxury’ – -based on our background, where our story stems from, and how accessible we want our products to be. But luxury for us means high-quality products that are produced with a lot of care, attention to detail and purpose. Luxury for us has less to do with heritage or who stands behind the brand. Luxury has also always been something that you want to show off. But I would like to see that sustainability becomes the new luxury; that people would like to brag about stuff they bought not based on how expensive it was, but rather on how sustainable it is. id
THE STYLE ISSUE
Eclectic energy Product designer Thomas Trad’s apartment on the outskirts of Beirut maintains an assorted balance of colour, material and textures that one may observe in his own work
WORDS BY AIDAN IMANOVA PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHARBEL SAADE
The oak shelving unit is the main architectural element in the apartment. THE STYLE ISSUE
Dining area featuring Thomas Trad’s Eva divider.
The living room area showcases a contrast between Oriental and Modern elements.
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Open-plan kitchen and dining area.
esigning a home is not only about designing a living space, but a space in which you can be yourself,” begins Lebanese product designer Thomas Trad, whose newly completed apartment is a 40-minute drive from Beirut, in the village of Baabdat. “I bought the flat three years ago, when they were still building the foundations, just because I fell in love with the view and it was always a dream for me to escape the city, where I used to live,” he confides. Set on the ground floor of a three-storey building (which was completed last year), the 170-square metre apartment opens up to a light-filled space with
its own 120m2 of outdoor space. Greeting visitors as they enter through the main door is an open space encompassing the joint kitchen and dining areas, as well as a living area, all situated along a glass façade providing a view of the mountains. “Originally, these spaces were divided and narrow, neglecting the surrounding nature,” Trad explains. “Merging them created a more spacious area, inviting sunlight and nature into the home.” One of the key elements that immediately stands out is the extensive use of wood, which is present from the spanning bookshelf to the wall cladding. “Inspired by Japanese architecture, wood is the primary material used in the apartment,” Trad says.
“Being in the heart of nature, the glass façade invites in natural light, which reflects delicately on the wood and creates a warm and relaxed atmosphere.” Upon entering the apartment, a nine-metre-long bookshelf extends on the right wall and merges with the continuous textured wall cladding, which also provides the hidden seamless doors of the entrance, the washroom and the corridor. “When designing my home, I wanted to recreate the feeling of peacefulness and ease of mind you find in Japanese houses,” says Trad. Contrasting the serene materiality of wood is an eclectic mix of furniture and objects, some of which comprise Trad’s own designs.
The bedroom features a natural oak bed and cabinets.
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Designer Thomas Trad seated in his favorite spot in the apartment.
From left: Alïa Tray on oak table; Miniature Wassily chair is one of many from Thomas’s collection; Wooden textural details are part of the spanning shelving unit.
“Each piece of furniture has a personal value to me,” explains Trad, “which creates an intimate and eclectic space that reflects my passion for Japanese architecture mixed with Syrian oriental mirrors and contemporary Wassily chairs [by Knoll].” The bookshelf, which Trad views as the main element of the apartment, doubles as a display of sorts, showcasing various objects of personal value. “Collected by my father and me throughout the years, [it includes] antique vases, modern sculptures, illustrations and paintings. It’s like a time capsule, bringing together stories and fragments of different times and spaces, placed in a grid,” Trad shares. “Aside from the bookshelf, the kitchen island is where I spend most of my time,” he shares. “Since I’m as passionate about cooking as I am about design, I’m always experimenting with flavours, textures and new recipes at the centre of my home, by the island, which has become a gathering spot.” Trad’s own designs include the dining table (“Designed well before the apartment and fits perfectly within the plan,” he adds), which is set parallel to the kitchen island. The coffee table is also one of Trad’s earlier designs and has moved across three different apartments so far, he admits. Additionally, since taking down the walls of the living area, Trad has placed the Eva partition to create a subtle separation between the
kitchen/dining area and the living room, without blocking the view to either space. An alumnus of London’s Central Saint Martins, Trad worked with world-renowned studios such as Fredrikson Stallard and Michael Anastassiades before returning to Beirut in 2016 to launch his own design studio, through which he expresses his fascination for manufacturing processes, craftsmanship and the beauty of materials. “In my home, as in all my designs, the contrast between textures and materials is vital. Mixing carved wood with marble, placing a huge stainless steel kitchen island surrounded by wooden cladding and flooring… In my opinion, while creating a space, we shouldn’t be limited to one style, pattern, trend or colour palette. There should always be room for evolution, without being bound to one set design,” Trad explains. This is exactly the reason why the designer has kept his space flexible, one that can adapt and evolve through time in line with his own growing furniture collection. The designer is currently designing a home for an artist in Lebanon, working on a new collection which he describes as “more sculptural” than his earlier designs, as well as experimenting with new materials and smaller-scale objects. “I’m also very excited about branching out my studio to Dubai very soon,” he shares. id
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The right mix In Manhattan, interior designer Ahmad AbouZanat has combined the soft and the raw to create a warm atmosphere enhanced with statement art and design pieces 42
interiors WORDS: KARINE MONIÉ IMAGES: DAVID MITCHELL STYLIST: MIEKE TEN HAVE
Cobble Hill sectional sofa from ABC Home dressed with Humburg Pillows from Alt for Living. Tapestry pillows by Viso from Goodee World. The centre of the room showcases the Baylor rug from Stark Carpet, Noguchi table from Design Within Reach, Carl Auböck accessories and 101 Copenhagen vase. Gerrit Reitveld’s Utrecht armchair from Cassina sits next to Lee Kirkbride’s Calvo table for The Future Perfect. Against the wall, Lugano media console from BoConcept is used as a base for accessories from RW Guild and 101 Copenhagen. Small artwork on the wall from The Thomas Nickles Project, while the throw blanket is from EQ3. THE STYLE ISSUE
interiors Gerrit Rietveld’s Utrecht armchair from Cassin sits next to Lee Kirkbride’s Calvo table for The Future Perfect. Artwork on the wall from The Thomas Nickles Project gallery, vase by 101 Copenhagen on the Lugano sideboard from BoConcept. Bleached Oak sculptural firestarter by Peg Woodworking as part of a collection aimed to raise funds for Bed- Stuy Strong.Baylor Rug from Stark.
Custom white Discus light fixture by Matter Made Arc. Dining table from Molteni Dada. Poltronica Monetra dining chairs from Poltrona Frau.
alestinian cultural heritage has a lot of motifs and textures and uses natural elements; these influences are present in my work,” begins Ahmad AbouZanat, who was born in Qatar, grew up in Lebanon and is now based in New York City where he founded PROJECT AZ. “Growing up in Lebanon, where the architecture and design have so many historical and geographical influences, gave me the confidence not to hesitate when it comes to juxtaposition.” This precise approach is reflected through AbouZanat’s latest project, a 165-square metre, two-bedroom apartment designed for a couple who wanted to preserve
the modernity and minimalist aesthetic of the space while introducing a colourful and airy feel. Situated on the 21st floor of a modern building nicknamed Jenga — a nod to the wooden block stacking game — in the hip neighbourhood of Tribeca, which is known for its industrial buildings and cobblestone streets, the space came to life during challenging times. “This was my first time working with these clients and the relationship was great throughout the whole process, even if we had to deal with Covid restrictions, which made things much more complicated,” AbouZanat recalls. “The homeowners were very understanding and supportive.” THE STYLE ISSUE
L50 Bed from Cassina. Bedding from Amalia Home Collections. Vases from RW Guild, wooden blub by the nightstand lamp from Ash Woodworking (lamp on the dresser). Signal Table Lamp from Souda Brooklyn (lamp on the nightstand). Juve Table Lamp. Vistosi via 1stDibs. Window Treatments by The Shade Store.
Bathroom custom marble sink and mirror part of the building design by Herzog & de Meuron and Shelton Mindel. Accessories , vase by RW Guild. Cosmetic mirror , press Mirror by architect Philippe Malouin for Umbra (in reflection). Relief no.10 artwork by Erin Sherriff via Sikkema Jenkins art gallery.
For their first apartment together, the couple were able to align their aesthetic thanks to the interior designer’s help and expertise. “The objective consisted of finding pieces that would speak to them equally, and finding ways to balance the selection,” AbouZanat says. For the colours, he worked on bringing the spirit of the neighbourhood into the modern apartment. “Tribeca’s industrial buildings are mostly characterised by their exterior in brick (red and yellow). Some of them are older than others, with wood nailer or iron oxide wash, among other architectural features. Although these elements were not necessarily at the forefront of my conversation with the clients, I had them in mind to develop the colour scheme, introduce different materials and create contrasts. A lot was achieved with the furniture selection and the rest was brought in via the sculptural accessories we chose for the apartment.” The material palette includes wood, concrete and steel mixed with suede, leather and glass. “My approach to design is always to introduce a subtle shift and change between textures to provide a dynamic scenario within the space,” AbouZanat says. In the living room, a sofa from ABC Home faces a Noguchi coffee table and an Utrecht armchair from Cassina. All these pieces sit on a Stark Carpet rug. In the dining room, Poltrona Frau chairs surround the Arc table from Molteni & C, while the Discus Pendant 3 ceiling light by Matter Made hangs above them. For the master bedroom, AbouZanat chose the L50 Cab Bed from Cassina with 5050 nightstands from Molteni & C, a Signal table lamp from Souda, a Jube table lamp from Vistosi via 1stDibs and curtains by The Shade Store.
Solid Teak Round Stool from EQ3. Vintage Classic Biedermeier Blossom Back. Hall chair in Walnut via 1stDibs.
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In the different areas of the apartment, southwest-facing windows let an abundance of natural light in, highlighting the open feel and maximising the urban views. The artwork selection and placement – curated through the Thomas Nickles Project gallery – also play an important role in adding character to the space, in particular the pieces above the yellow sleeper Capriccio sofa from Natuzzi in the guest and TV room. In the foyer, which is adorned with an Aisle console table by BoConcept, is a vintage classic Biedermeier Blossom Back Hall chair in walnut and a Synthesis Jubilee rug by Stark Carpet, the work of artist Erin Shirreff – purchased through Sikkema Jenkins & Co. gallery – which is a statement sculptural piece that immediately pops when one enters the apartment. “This home is a series of warm, cosy and colourful moments one can experience [while] transition[ing] from one space to another,” AbouZanat notes.
Now that the Big Apple has fully reopened, AbouZanat is already busy with new projects, including a partial renovation and furnishing project in Tribeca. “I am mostly excited about the bar area addition to the space and how we are giving each one of the three bedrooms its own personality,” he says. “I also have another fun furnishing project in Chelsea, where my client is open to introducing different colours throughout the apartment, which is one of the design elements I am particularly interested in working with.” Since moving to New York a decade ago, AbouZanat has found his way in the city, both personally and professionally. “It took me a few years to be in a place where I could take a chance and give it a try – a decision I am grateful for every day,” he says. id
Top, from left: Ahmad AbouZanat standing in the living room; Synthesis Jubilee Rug form Sapphire collection by Stark Carpets. Relief no.10 Artwork by Erin Sherriff via Sikemma Jenkins art gallery. Vintage Classic Biedermeier Blossom Back Hall chair in Walnut via 1stDibs. Next page: Diamon Rug by Gan Rugs via 1stDibs. Bumper Ottomans from Blu Dot. Capriccio sleeper sofa from Natuzzi dressed with Kame collection pillows by the late Kenzo Takadao for Roche Bobois. Artwork by Thomas Nickles Project. Vase by RW Guild. Lamp from Shades of Light.
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A sea of dreams Luxury hotel group Aman has long paved the way for intimate retreats across the world’s remotest locations. With the gradual re-opening of global borders, we visit Amanruya in Bodrum, which – after almost a decade – continues to immerse its guests in the cultural richness of the region’s artisanship and its historic building traditions WORDS BY AIDAN IMANOVA
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manruya borrows its essence from the convergence of the two words that make up its meaning: ‘aman’, named after the Sanskrit word for peace, and ‘ruya’, the Turkish word for ‘dream’. The idyllic hotel is located on the southeastern Aegean coast of Turkey, on the northern coast of the Bodrum Peninsula in Mandalya Bay, and spans 60 acres of land surrounded by Mediterranean pine forests and ancient olive groves. Its hilltop location slopes down towards a private pebble beach, where a collection of pavilions inspired by the region’s traditional architecture sets the scene. Reminiscent of a village, the series of courtyards and terraces offers expansive sea vistas. Amanruya’s architecture is a product of the vision of the late Turkish architect Turgut Cansever, who bought the land with his partners in 1970. He was awarded the prestigious Aga Khan Award for Architecture for a number of Demir Holiday Village
Project houses that were built on the eastern side of the property in 1992. It was, however, Cansever’s daughter Emine – alongside her husband Mehmet Ogun – who realised the architect's dream of creating a holiday resort together with Aman. Embracing a vernacular approach based on traditional Turkish homes, the retreat comprises stone structures that flow from and into each other as the land dictates, creating an architecture that works together with its natural landscape while creating minimal impact, and which appears to rise organically from the red earth. Apart from the precast concrete pillars decorated in Cansever’s signature ornamentalism, everything in the property is made by hand. The village-like resort is modelled on a Mediterranean-cum-Ottoman patrician villa, with other architectural references embedded in the building techniques, together with vernacular expressions from the Hittite, Phrygian, Ionian,
Roman and Byzantine eras, among others. “If a designer seeks a solution that belongs to the place, then history is the logical place to start,” the designers say of its incorporation of Turkish design. The 36 stone cottages, made from local Bodrum Çilek stone, make up the guest rooms and offer private swimming pools made with diabaz granite, alongside terraces that are scented with thyme and shaded by olive trees. Each cottage features white marble floors, mahogany ceilings and white Mugla hamman-style bathrooms with skylights. The rooms also all feature Ottoman influences such as the Bursa arches joining the bathrooms and the bedrooms, which include fourposter canopies with ribbed wooden detailing. During the cooler months, the rooms are warmed by Turkish mangal charcoal fireplaces, similar to those found in the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. All the in-room furniture is designed and produced by Gaya of Bali – a nod to Aman’s properties across the globe.
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White-washed surfaces and the white Mugla marble are contrasted with dark wood ceilings in the lounges and dining rooms of the hotel, adorned with structural wooden pillars typical of traditional joinery that dates back to Anatolia in the 13th and 14th centuries. All the resort buildings are free-standing, to create a sense of privacy without losing the sense of community that is at the heart of all Aman properties. Traditional Anatolian architecture is also the inspiration behind the resort’s entrance, which includes a three-storey, free-standing library featuring a lounge on the top floor, with floor-toceiling windows that overlook the ocean on one side and the pine forests on the other. Pebble-edged steps lead from the library to the Boutique, where one can immerse oneself in local crafts. The Carpet
Gallery next door is housed within a hand-built, beehive-shaped brick cistern, traditionally used to conserve rainwater. This leads to the Art Gallery, which features white walls and two decorative medallions of Brazilian stone hanging on either side of its high walls. The property’s 50-metre infinity pool is made of green marble from Antalya in the south of Turkey, merging with the colour of the Aegean Sea – and is surrounded by four Dining Pavilions. Local building and craftsmanship are at the heart of Amanruya, with all stone and marble being locally sourced and cut, while other elements, such as the hand-laid cakil stone that defines the pathways and windowsills, are created by female artisans. Local builders have also created the stone
walls that line the path leading to the guest cottages. The elegant simplicity of white is carried out across the property, including its ‘Barbakan’ detailing which features design elements inspired by the traditional stone Kilis houses of southern Turkey, allowing the deflection of wind and rain while letting light into its internal spaces. Some of the buildings also feature awnings and other eaves, and the dark acajou wood, hand-carved by local craftspeople, spans the ceiling and soars upwards in fluted glass concertina doors. With an amalgamation of traditional architectural building techniques, contemporary interior design and a serene natural landscape, Amanruya is an intimate retreat that doesn’t fail to teach its guests of the region’s history while offering a sense of wellness and an appreciation of local culture and know-how. id
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Offering spectacular views of the Aegean Sea, new boutique hotel Kalesma Mykonos features a design inspired by Cycladic traditions, viewed through a contemporary lens
WORDS: KARINE MONIÉ IMAGES: COURTESY OF KALESMA MYKONOS
amed after the Greek word for ‘inviting’, Kalesma Mykonos is a five-star boutique hotel that embodies the spirit of its translation. Situated in the secluded area of Aleomandra, perched on a hillside above Ornos Bay on the hip island of Mykonos, the hotel is only a five-minute drive from Chora (the main town) and a short walk from the beach. The project – with architecture by K-Studio and interiors by Studio Bonarchi, in collaboration with the hotel’s owners – is a serene getaway consisting of a whitewashed collection of suites and villas scattered among the landscape, evoking the look and feel of a traditional village. “There is a local saying that when a couple marry, they make a village, meaning they will build a home that will grow over the years to accommodate generation after generation of their family,” the team says. “Kalesma Mykonos reimagines the concept of the extended family home as an intimate hospitality destination that invites guests to connect to the essence of Cycladic life.” Inspired by the island vernacular and embracing the raw
beauty of the arid rocky landscape and dark blue sea, the hotel was built like an amphitheatre to maximise the 360-degree panorama at every moment. It comprises 25 suites (each of 63 square metres, with a 90-square metre terrace) and two villas (Apollon with three bedrooms and Artemis with four). Every accommodation has its own heated pool, unobstructed sea views, private terrace and original artworks, as well as expansive bathrooms with freestanding bathtubs and an outdoor shower on a private patio. In the simple yet refined spaces, the neutral and earthy colour palette features natural sandblasted stone floors and dark wooden ceilings with chestnut beams and bamboo. Traditional and contemporary design elements are combined throughout, creating a timeless atmosphere that’s infused with simplicity. Most of the furniture – including the sofas with stonewashed linen fabrics; the handmade oak armchairs with 1950s-inspired rattan details; the sculptural curved black lava stone coffee tables; and the sleek lighting fixtures – were custom-made and fabricated by Greek craftsmen. THE STYLE ISSUE
Kalesma Mykonos is organised around a central ‘plateia’ or communal space, home to the restaurant Pere Ubu, where dishes created with seasonal and local products – as well as homemade breads and pies baked in the wood fired oven – honour the local cuisine. With its laid-back atmosphere, the Pere Ubu bar and lounge by the infinity pool complements the hotel’s social hub. In addition to having access to a private chapel for wedding celebrations, as well as a gym, in-room spa treatments and private yoga and Pilates classes, guests have plenty of opportunities to experience the spirit of hospitality that pervades the destination and enjoy the constant dialogue between the surroundings and the interiors, which connect seamlessly. “The communal social areas, wellness area and boutique are located at the uppermost part of the site, to ensure that these views can be appreciated by every guest as they relax,
swim in the pool or dine on the terrace,” the architects describe. “Close by, a traditional stone aloni – a circular structure used for grinding wheat into flour – has been retained and repurposed as a meditative platform from which to enjoy the sunset.” Laid-back yet glamorous, discreet yet sensual, Kalesma Mykonos blends curves and lines throughout its design, which reveals itself through the bougainvillea-filled archways. The property also has 100-year-old olive trees from all over Greece; a lemon and vegetable garden; 12,000 plants – including rosemary and lavender; and grapevines. Every detail reflects a sense of purity and authenticity, all elevating the true essentials of this unique place, described by the design team and hotel’s owners as the “the Greek light and the stunning Aegean Sea view.” Here, guests find a piece of paradise. id
THE STYLE ISSUE
The summer edit The summer season has everyone in brighter spirits, and we are looking at ways to bring that lively energy indoors – and outdoors. Our Summer Edit highlights lightweight and airy furniture pieces, whimsical forms, clean lines and contrasts of cool and warm tones, to help us get into the spirit of the season.
Sling chair by Studiopepe for Ethimo A chair that exudes a ‘holiday spirit’ has been created by Studiopepe for Ethimo. Designed for both indoor and outdoor use, the Sling chair is inspired by vintage camping in the ‘70s and sports a simplicity of design with ‘free’ ergonomic seating and a stainless steel structure that comes in various shades of bronze. The cloth, made using Élitis fabrics, defines the seat and is available in a multitude of colours and patterns that allows for ample personalisation. The cloth is both comfortable and robust and hugs the contours of the chair. Sling can also be paired with a footrest that makes it the perfect seat for a comfortable relaxation. 60
Papa Sun lounger by Haldane South African outdoor furniture brand Haldane’s Papa Sun collection oozes that sought-after urban-chic style. With its contemporary curves, the collection is ideal for lazing outdoors (or indoors if one so wishes). With a simplified, scooped form, designer Haldane Martin’s latest outdoor collection is a luxurious and contemporary take on the round Malaysian cane papasan chair that was popularised in Western culture in the post-war 1950s and became a familiar feature in South African homes in the ‘70s. Appearing to be floating in mid-air but actually held up by minimal round stainless steel tubing, and featuring performance fabrics from Sunbrella, the Papa Sun sofa and lounger are perfect for basking under the sun. THE STYLE ISSUE
Puru side table by Estudio Persona Uruguayan Estudio Persona’s collection is inspired by the brand’s home country, while defying the stereotypes often associated with Latin American design. The Puru side table focuses on the concept of the beauty of simplicity, using two materials to express a sense of lightness: wood and stainless steel. Deriving its name from the Japanese word for ‘pool’, the table’s waxed white oak against polished stainless steel creates a mirroring effect, with each element reminding of the need for each other in its reflection.
Giro by Vincent Van Duysen for Kettal For his first collaboration with Kettal, architect and designer Vincent Van Duysen began with a rope – using it in different ways and sewing it together to create the shape of the Giro, which has been strongly influenced by the Orkney chair and blends vernacular furniture-making with the brand’s technological expertise. While the Orkney used real rope, Giro “hinges on the flexibility of recycled polypropilente rope and on the necessity to produce such a collection industrially,” the designer says. The collection is composed of armchairs and coffee tables and, in true Van Duysen fashion, allows the materials to become the protagonists. Giro is both warm and tactile – the teak giving it natural authenticity.
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Tapestries by Mira Sohlén Made from a unique method of tiling, Mira Sohlén’s tapestries comprise handmade tufted shapes in the finest wool which are then sewn together. Her designs are inspired by improvised shape study, each one creating an interplay of negative and positive space. Each tapestry is called Opus, followed by its chronological roman numeral in the order it was created. “I love to work with my hands, and everything I have explored within design and textile has led me to this. I wanted to find a way to challenge classical craftsmanship but with a modern approach… I always search for unorthodox ways to execute projects; and I’m naturally drawn to deconstruction and reconstruction,” the designer says of her process. 64
Agave Cabinet by Fernando Laposse At first glance, the Agave Cabinet automatically sparks one’s curiosity. Reminiscent of a giant, cuddly armoire, the curvilinear cabinet is clothed in layers of elongated strands of tactile sisal, created by Mexican designer Fernando Laposse using birch plywood, kiln-dried Canadian maple and mesh metal. The monumental Agave stands almost two metres high and is reflective of Laposse’s approach that focuses on investigating the cultural and agricultural heritage of Mexico by promoting sustainable agriculture and developing cottage craft industries in the process. The Agave Cabinet is made using a composite material created by upcycling the leaves of the agave plant. The cabinet is currently part of an exhibition called ‘A New Realism’ at New York’s Friedman Benda Gallery.
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Vidar 4 by Raf Simons for Kvadrat Originally designed by Fanny Aronsen, Vidar has been re-coloured by acclaimed fashion designer Raf Simons, who has brought his distinctive sense of style to the home. Distinguished by his innovative blending of colour and materials, for which he is known in the fashion world, Simons’s collection of home textiles and accessories is both sophisticated and playful. Woven from bouclé yarn with a regular loop size, Vidar 4 has a deep, tight, large-grained texture that lends itself particularly well to the graphic use of colour in upholstery. Simons’s altered version of the collection features shades ranging from moss green, dark aubergine, ruby red and midnight blue to brick, earth tones and easy neutrals. The gentle satin surface finish of the weave contrasts with the deep shadowy tones in the depths, giving a multifaceted richness to the intense colours in the range.
The of the development overtaken by .
THE JUBAIL RESIDENCES A NEW COMMUNITY DESTINATION
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MAXI sliding doors
Designing with adaptability Rimadesio’s latest collection is inspired by the freedom of flexible spaces
or Rimadesio’s 2021 collection – which will be unveiled during Salone del Mobile in September – Italian designer Giuseppe Bavuso has focused on flexibility and freedom, creating partitions, wall panelling and composition systems that allow spaces to come together while maintaining a sense of separation. The Maxi is a new sliding panel system (the ninth product in the sliding panels range) that offers the flexibility to create customised compositions suitable for multiple uses, from residential to retail contexts. The undisputed protagonist of this system is its glass surface which is marked by an irregular aluminium grid pattern 68
with independent glass panels, designed to give maximum strength and stability to the structure. The result is a rigorous but light design which enhances the qualities of the glass while boosting its subtle transparency as well as the play of light and reflections through an array of finishes. “Maxi is a partition system designed for wide spaces – an essential and refined solution, capable of separating but not dividing, thus creating fluid spaces where light dominates," Bavuso says. The Modulor wall panelling system has also evolved to include new compositional elements – including shelving units that emphasise the linearity of the wall panelling, a new TV
SELF PLAN system
compartment, hinged doors with push opening and no visible handles, as well as shelves with LED lighting. Bavuso describes it as being adaptable to any pre-existing architectural condition. Another key system in the collection is the Self Plan. “Self Plan is a system that makes freedom of composition its main quality. It declines in suspended compositions, ranging from the desk element to the living room furniture,” says Bavuso. Depending on the functionality required, Self Plan offers several equipped solutions, ranging from the writing desk element to living room furniture. Entirely made of aluminium, it is customisable in size and finishes.
MODULOR wall paneling system
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Summer of love Pops of colour are dominating our summer palette, from Rimowa's collaboration with Choas for its suitcase range to Yinka Ilori's beautifully patterned tablecloths
Essential Cabin Rimowa x Chaos Available at rimowa.com
1. Eclectic Underground diﬀuser by Tom Dixon. Available at matchesfashion.com 2. Beoplay H95 Berluti Edition. Available at bang-olufsen.com 3. Aami Aami tablecloth by Yinka Ilori. Available at matchesfashion.com 4. 1970 black musk and patchouli scented candle by Bella Freud. Available at matchesfashion.com . 5. Shell cocktail picks by Joanna Buchanan. Available at bloomingdales.ae 6. Rock marbled-resin jug by Dinosaur Designs. Available at matchesfashion.com 7. Paperclip bracelet by Virgil Abloh for Jacob & Co. Available at jacobandco.comw
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Through a contemporary lens Contemporary House India highlights some of the country’s most innovative, ambitious and beautiful homes photographed by London-based Edmund Sumner
house is not just a house; it is a home. It is a community. It is a living entity – and we must celebrate this,” said Pritzker Prize-winning architect Balkrishna (B.V.) Doshi in an interview with architect and writer Rob Gregory – who has joined forces with architectural photographer Edmund Sumner to create a major survey on India’s contemporary residential architecture. Containing over twenty examples of India’s finest contemporary homes, Contemporary House India features private residences built by leading and up-andcoming architects, including the likes of B.V. Doshi himself, as well as Studio Mumbai, Architecture BRIO, Matharoo Associates, Abraham John Architects and Khosla Associates. Published by Thames & Hudson, Contemporary House India highlights India’s thriving architectural scene through projects that span the country, from the western coasts of Goa and Maharashtra and the inland waters of the Western Ghats to the inner-city havens of Ahmedabad and Mumbai, as well as the banks of the river Ganges in the north – all illustrated through the photography of Sumner and architectural plans for each project. The book is split into four chapters, each one highlighting a form of architecture: ‘Urban Living’, ‘Remote Villas’, ‘New Settlements’ and ‘Improvisation’.
© Thames & Hudson
As well as showcasing the wide range of contemporary residences that span the country, Contemporary House India also highlights new approaches to building, that have been bolstered by a generation of design-savvy homeowners. It also includes introductory essays, involving the country’s top practicing architects, on the subject of India’s residential architecture in the context of its varied landscapes and climate, as well as historical influences and socio-cultural and economic realities. Robert Verrijt, founder of Architecture BRIO – the firm behind the Tala Treehouse Villa and the House on a Stream, which both feature in the book – who was born and trained in the Netherlands, questions the need to put a stamp on an Indian architectural identity, asking whether it is necessary at all. “In the Netherlands, you are not asked if your work has a Dutch identity or a European one. You do not question the historical reality of Modernism… I think we should be more open to diversity, and embrace new possibilities. The world is becoming less homogenous,” he says.
Brick house New Dekhi, India Romi Kholsa design studio ©Edmund Sumner
The Flying House Daramsala India Romi Kholsa design studios ©Edmund Sumner
Sculpture by Freeman Lau
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Part of the Personal Line – designed by Antonio Citterio and inspired by science and nature – the new Bike Personal is a high-end exercise bike with a compact footprint and elegant design that will look sleek in any environment. The builtin Technogym Coach and Technogym Live interface helps guide a range of fitness objectives with a personal trainer, curated routines and scenic views to create a truly personal fitness experience in the privacy of your own home.
Technogym Bike Personal by Antonio Citterio 74
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