Name: Fadi Sibai
Position within company: Managing Director
Tell us a little about your background
I have a Master’s Degree in Architecture from the Académie Libanaise des Beaux-Arts (ALBA) in Lebanon. My experience began with GM Architects, where I was part of the team designing and delivering hospitality projects for 4 years. I am proud to have been part of that creative surge in Lebanon, having worked on several award-winning restaurants, including Pravda and La Posta. It was during my time at GM Architects that I decided to establish D&A in Lebanon. Ten years later we established our flagship office in Muscat, Oman. Muscat was a great starting point for me. As a small design consultancy firm we had the opportunity to prove ourselves and to be innovative within the projects with our conceptual approach and micro detailing.
How would you describe your own personal style?
My personal style is based on “form follows function.” Throughout my work, I strive to create the ‘wow’ factor within simplicity and pure, defined lines. The beauty of a space is to create an impact while caring for the details and execution.
I always feel challenged to look for the best solution. In my view, everything can be improved. It is this drive for perfection that defines my style.
Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from both history and the future. The context of a space (its history, heritage) combined with a visionary approach related to basic forms and needs always provides inspiration.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
Technology is having a huge impact on design. It is taking the design to higher levels, most of the time beyond where we initially had intended to take it. Having flying cars in the future, as an example, will force our whole world of architecture to evolve. As technology innovates, we too have to innovate and think outside the box. However, as an architect, I think it is vital to control this impact by respecting human needs and preserving our heritage.
Name five key themes to consider when approaching property development in 2015 and beyond.
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to development projects, what would it be?
Quality over quantity.
How important are The International Design and Architecture Awards as recognition of talent and achievement?
The International Design & Architecture Awards, hosted by design et al, are recognized and respected in the world of interior design and architecture. They highlight trends and celebrate talent that may otherwise never get recognized.
Moreover, they are unique in that voting is open to industry professionals, readers, and customers. This provides our small but growing firm with the unparalleled opportunity of getting exposure and global recognition for its work, beyond Oman and the region. To us, architecture is a journey of continuous learning and inspiration. Our application to the ID&A awards is part of our learning journey. We hope to not only participate in the awards but also to celebrate design successes and designs from other entries across the industry.
What projects are you currently working on?
Some of the major projects we are currently working on include:
Muscat Electricity Distribution Company Headquarters (interior architecture)
Ministry of Oil and Gas (architecture and interior architecture)
Dar Al Zain Phase 5 Lagoon Houses (architecture and interior architecture)
Boutique Hotel in the old part of Muscat (interior architecture)
Jeep and Alfa Romeo car showroom (architecture and interior architecture)
A number of private residential villas (both architecture and interior architecture)
What are your aims and goals for the next twelve months?
After registering success and establishing a name for ourselves here in Oman, the time is right for us to branch into more challenging markets. This will be our strategic focus for the coming months.
Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself
Your most treasured possession?
Your favourite holiday destination?
Your favourite hotel / restaurant / bar?
Hotel: The Chedi Muscat – Oman
Restaurant: Beach Restaurant, SALA Phuket Resort and Spa – Thailand
Bar: Zuma – Abu Dhabi, UAE
Your favourite book / film / song?
Book: “Brida” by Paolo Coelho
Film: “Zorba the Greek” (1964)
Song: “Pour some sugar on me” by Def Leppard
Your favourite food and drink?
Food: Japanese cuisine
Drink: Red wine
Your favourite way to spend an afternoon?
Take a nap!
If you weren’t a designer, what would you be?
Most likely, a music producer.