Monumental yet minimal could sum up this mansion – yet such few words cannot communicate such a striking space with incredibly meticulous attention to detail.
Experiencing the seamlessly sophisticated atmosphere, it comes as no surprise that this project has been shortlisted for the Luxury Residence £10Million Plus Award in The International Hotel and Property Awards 2022. This stand-out design is an ideation of nature imbued indoors, realised with first-rate finishes and thanks to expert execution.
Bringing the Outdoors In
The freeing feeling of openness is a sharp contrast to so many enclosed homes with dull decor. From palatial porcelain floors to branches bursting from the walls, here nature is celebrated. The intrinsic connection to nature indisputably creates the welcoming ambience – all finishes are refined and cultivated for the concept ‘Tree of Life’.
Natural oak timber has been sculpturally layered into a fantastical feature wall of wood – offering a wave of welcome as one passes by. Character is quite literally carved into the property to create a cocooning effect, these rhythmic rows also allow light to illuminate the voluminous void with pleated pillars of light that dance across the walls throughout the day. With such an inventive vision, it may surprise some that the client herself took a strong lead in the design of this home.
Hotel Spa-Style Inspirations
A clear client brief is important. It’s essential for shaping a space into a sumptuous sanctuary that is well loved over a lifetime. The vision for this Dubai Hills Grove villa derived from a luxury resort in Switzerland. The natural elements and open bedroom-to-bathroom space resonated with the homeowner.
Helen Skea of Infinite Architects comments: “My client, Deyavani, gave me a strong brief and knew exactly what she wanted, which allowed us to be on the same page from the start. Devayani had strong ideas and has a brilliant eye for proportion and finishes so was an integral part of the design team.”
From Blank Canvas to Beautiful Creation
An important factor in the renovation was reverting the structure back to shell and core. A blank canvas allows for scope to reform the space and restructure layouts according to a clients lifestyle.
Helen: “The client loved the idea of open bathrooms that flowed from the main bedrooms and wished to maximise both the bathroom and wardrobe spaces: changing the original layout of 8 bedrooms to 6 with a new floor plan was the solution.
Big openings increase the sense of space, we tried to avoid doors wherever possible to create open plan living; instead incorporating moving panels which delivered a flexible use of space for privacy where required.”
Delicate Dramatic Details
Floor plans that flow with indoor-outdoor and bed-to-bath layouts are a rising request amongst residents across all home types, thanks to the hotel-chic trend. With two spaces merging into one, a continual complimentary colourway carries through to the bathrooms – but with added drama to the master bathroom.
The depth in the colour palette is seen through furniture for the master bedroom, yet this flips to the flooring and grounds the room for the bathroom – creating contrast against the Koy Bagnoquartz bathtub. The matt white texture has an inviting tactility that calls out for you to immerse yourself in its luxury.
Bathed by light thanks to illuminating colours from the chromotherapy showerhead, there is competition of which space offers better respite for washing away any troubles of the day – the sight of an over-sized, recessed spa-shower head immediately implies relaxation. Which is precisely the ethos for this space. Spa-style bathrooms and at-home retreats are in line with the growing global wellness trend we see post-pandemic.
I love designing bathrooms – it’s one of my favourite spaces to design
Design Director – Infinite Design
Elements of the Earth
Nestled into natural agate countertops lay undercounter basins – an oval inset basin is preferential for hotel suites and a perfect choice for crafting a hotel-spa inspired space. The design narrative of nature is equally realised in the master bathroom, with four of five elements present:
Earth – Marble walls and a Bagnoquartz bath are natural materials representing the element of Earth.
Water – A natural inclusion in the bathroom is water, which flows from faucets and overall helps us relax as we cleanse.
Wood – Natural oak panelling to the walls and cabinetry adds depth and warmth to the design.
The continual calming colour palette calls for a softer and more tactile choice than clean-cut Chrome. The flattering finish of Brushed Nickel brassware compliments it’s surroundings with a perfect balance between warm and cool – so as not to detract attention or alter ambience of the bathrooms.
Elements of the earth compliment each other with the juxtaposition of wood encasing the stone Serenity Bagnotec basin, for a pinch of pizazz in the powder room – a clever embrace of two textures. The stone wall’s texture is accentuated by illuminations from both a halo-lit mirror and elegant pendant. Lighting is yet another experiential layer of this project – the leaf-shaped lighting installation imitates sun bursting through the clouds.
Every space is carefully considered and given its own identity, the shortlisting for in The International Hotel and Property Awards 2022 is no surprise. in line with the overriding design intent of nature. Helen advises this is a recurring theme amongst her clients:
“In my experience, at the moment opulence is seen in bars and restaurants but the home is a calm and cosy retreat. My current clients all desire a more European or Scandinavian style of design that is light, airy and open with organic textures.”
Discover more about biophilic design in our dedicated blog.
Photos: Duncan Chard