Beautiful homes, Subdued Luxury


Interior design guru Igor Lipkin takes us through his design of а swanky family apartment on the Palm. Не shares with us his vision for designing and creating luxurious, family spaces.

Please describe the project

This is one of 3 bedroom apartment in the Tiara complex which is located on Palm Jumeira. It is a very spacious and well archi-tected space that was handed to the client by the developer as a plain canvas- freshly painted off-white space.

Who are the owners of the villa?

The owners of the villa are family from one of the EX Soviet countries who are happily finding Dubai a safe and relaxing place to come during weekends ог holidays.

How were you contacted for the job? This was a referral job. The client saw an-other apartment decorated that I had deco-rated in the same Tiara complex and was referred to me by the owner.

What was your brief for the project?

The brief consisted of several pleasant meet-ings with the client and his family. I had an opportunity to meet each member of the family including their two kids; their 5 year old son and 13 year old daughter. The clients primarily desired a cosy yet classical style re-treat with hints of Mid Eastern style. They were looking for warm hues of brown with elements of gold finish. They specifically men-tioned that they were not great fans of bright colors. It was also very important for them to be able to complete the decoration with their own personal touches. My job was really to concentrate on the large pieces of furniture, floor and wall finishes but not the small items-that I left fbr my clients to figure out. It was clear that they definitely wanted classical style furniture, they also specifies that the soft fur-niture for the living room had to be practical and easy to clean. То my great joy the rest of the decoration was left to my creativity The kids on the other hand were quite spe-cific! The boy - a fan of cars and anything re-lated to cars told me that he would love to live in а car if he gets the opportunity and his mom’s permission. The girl was a fan of pink roses, she wanted a room that would that would be fit for a princes.

What was your starting point on the project?

I started on the master bedroom, for this I chose a Ralph Lauren black bed decorated with gold carvings that the client had seen in Harvey Nichols and mentioned to те. Не was very convinced that this was the kind of bed he would like to see in the bedroom and so we went for the look.

For the decoration of the open space living/dinning open, I started off the look by placing a beautiful Persian carpet on the floor. Then frora the carpet, I took inspiration for the colors that I used in the room. It is incredible how much this piece of amazing peace of Iranian craftsmanship inspired!

Can you take us through each area and describe in detail what you have done in terms of color, light, furnish-ings etc

The main space of the apartment is made up of the living/dining агеа which is а large, continuous room that has bay wid-ows covering an entire side, giving amaz-ing, unobstructed views of the sea. Then, all the other rooms, including the kitchen flow from this space. Неге I used brown used looking Kensington soft furnishings that pretty much dominate the room. I found these sofas and chairs at a very rea-sonable price for the quality at Falaknaz Habitat. The sofas combined a classical look with the durability that the client was looking for. The American produced din-ning set and chairs I found at Habitat, I chose these pieces as I felt they matched the seating area furniture perfectly. Then I introduced a few pieces of antique furni-ture to give a more lived look. In order to fiiiish the look, I made sure that certain details were not overlooked, for example, I had the flat screenTV framed in a gilded classical design picture frame to match the surroundings, then I designed the coffee table myself and had this custom made and had the curtains finished with golden borders and tassels.

The master bedroom has the Ralph Lau-ren bed as a focal point. It is comple-mented by Versace carpet in the same colors and golden-brown silk curtains with heavy tassels. The client wanted а very dark bedroom, so I also introduced wallpaper which looks like old brown leather with elements of black. This solved the conflict of having chocolate brown flooring and a black bed. Black and brown аге colors that usually аге not that easy to combine but in this case the effect is really strong. The antique mir ror and table that holds the flat screen TV аге both in black wood with gold-leafing details.

For the kids rooms, the boy^s room was set up as racing track with Italian wall-рарег depicting an actual гасе in Italy. His bed is а саг which looks like the win-ning саг in the гасе on the wall when you enter the room. So as he wished, he got to sleep in а саг! The girPs room was covered with pink rose printed wall paper. I chose and antiqued white furniture set with silk and satin bedding in white and cream colors and finished the Iook using lace quilt elements which blend perfectly with the wallpaper. I added a cream coloured canopy to the bed to make it look fit for princess. The last touch was a bouquet of fresh pink roses in the cream color vase on the side table.

Was there a specific color scheme that you had to work around? Do you think color schemes are important?

Ycs, there was a color scheme in place. In fact I believe it is one of the mosc impor-tant topics to be discussed and agreed upon by the client. There аге certain elements in a decorative scheme that you can always get used to, but a color scheme is definitely not one of these!

Do you have a signature style that you use in projects?

I do not have a signature style. I am not sure that I want to develop a signature style in the future. I feel that any signature style would stunt my creativity, which is already contained by the usual constraints you get with most of the jobs. Why create another constraint of being in style with what ever you have done in the past? I enjoyed those past projects while working on them and hopefully someone enjoying living in those spaces today. I like to enjoy the present cre-ative moment on every project. It is a beau-tiful and fulfilling experience.

How would you describe the look and feel of the project?

The look I was aiming for was luxurious yet subdues, sophisticated yet cozy and practi-cal. I did not want the apartment to look like a furniture showroom, I was construct-ing a living space for a family based on their personal preferences. The feeling I was try-ing to achieve is for all of them to feel at home. I was able to give this family exactly what they wanted and a little more. That little more was an expression of my love for my work and the people I worked for.