Company: Casa Forma
Position within company: Founder
Tell us a little about your background in design (education, experience, etc.)
I came to the design world from a background in finance. I majored in economics, and then went to business school at Stanford. It was not until I moved back to London in 2006 that I saw the potential of the property market – there was (and still is) a huge demand for London properties.
Casa Forma was initially created as a property development firm in 2007. However, after observing the enthusiasm for our design at the launch of our property developments we began to offer interior design services. Since inception, Casa Forma has won eight International Design & Architectural Awards, three UK Property Awards and one SBID Awards.
How would you describe your personal interior design style?
My personal style is contemporary classic with a touch of Art Deco, which I feel is sophisticated and timeless. However, Casa Forma as a company does not have a particular design style or formula since we focus our designs to suit the needs of each of our clients. Therefore, we offer truly bespoke design tailored to our clients’ lifestyle, personal style, and preferences.
Where does your design inspiration come from?
My design inspirations comes from nature, art, architecture, travel, fashion and simply by observing every day beauty that surrounds us.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense.
Casa Forma’s clients demand exclusivity. Casa Forma differentiates its service by creating truly customised interior design. Clients are now more exposed to diversity in design and have a better understanding of quality and customised solutions than ever before. Therefore, our team of interior designers and architects spend time researching new materials and spending time creating new design schemes to offer a truly bespoke design solution.
Name five key themes to consider when approaching design in 2017 and beyond.
– Understated styling
– Quality above all
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to product design, what would it be?
I would suggest using neutral colours on the walls. Good design is about balance and is achieved by developing a neutral shell where elements such as custom furnishings, fabrics and accessories add design accents thereby adding different layers to the design scheme.
How important are The International Design and Architecture Awards as recognition of talent and achievement?
I think the Design Awards are exposing talented professionals within the industry itself as well as to potential clients. The event also increases the awareness and appreciation of high quality design that has been produced over the previous year, which is encouraging to everyone in the industry.
What projects are you currently working on?
We are mainly working on high-end residential projects in London and in Beirut. We have been approached to design a 36 metres triple decked yacht and I am very excited to venture into marine design.
What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
We hope to expand even more globally. Our international design practice provides comprehensive luxury interior design and architectural services for residential, commercial, and hospitality properties. We would also like to expand into aviation design.
Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself:
Your most treasured possession?
My photographs as great memories are priceless.
Your favourite holiday destination?
I love going to Hong Kong. Since I lived there from 1999-2004, I am familiar with the city and love to visit and go there on holiday whenever I get a chance. The beaches of Lantau. The amazing hikes and the fantastic restaurants make Hong Kong my number one go to holiday destination.
Your favourite hotel / restaurant / bar?
I love the Peninsula in Hong Kong. Its Colonial design and unequivocal level of service make it my favourite hotel. The spa and pool there are divine.
Your favourite book / film / song?
I am a big fan of the Chainsmokers.
My favourite film is ‘Life is Beautiful’ because amongst the various themes highlighted in the movie the focus on being resilient and positive no matter what life throws at you is very much in line with my beliefs.
In the field of design, I love Frank Lloyd Write book “on and by”, it’s full of inspirational ideas both in interiors and architecture. His buildings and innovative ideas will inspire people in all categories of design for a lifetime.
Your favourite food and drink?
I love lobster or truffle anything.
Your favourite way to spend an afternoon? (in no more than 25 words)
My favourite way to spend an afternoon is with my children Alif, Ayat and Aria as well as my little Yorkie, Fizz in St James Park feeding the ducks and simply enjoying nature.
If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?
If I were not a designer I think I would have worked in venture capital or private equity because I am passionate about entrepreneurship and working in these industries would allow me to work in an entrepreneurial environment.