Home designed by Hala Saleh
Art Direction Perihan Kharma
Photography Adham Mostafa
When Hala Saleh took over the design and architecture of this family house, she spared no measure in turning it into a dream home. Her first design, the sprawling mansion nestled in Kattameya Heights is a one-of-a-kind creation that seamlessly blends themes and design elements from Romanesque to Asian, neo-classical to contemporary…
I designed this home as a hobby and from there it became a career,” explains Hala Saleh who has since achieved a degree in architecture and interior design. The tone of the home is set by the dramatic lobby with its enormously high ceilings and gorgeous glass dome that floods the space with natural light. “I was working alongside architect Hatem Hassan who really helped me create some unusual features in the mansion. Whenever the installers told me it couldn’t be done, he figured out a way to make it happen!” exclaims Saleh. This couldn’t be truer than for the unique yet understated flooring that appears at the entrance and runs through the whole house. Using a mixture of marble, hardwood and slate, the floors are unlike anything else you’ll ever see in Egypt.
“The biggest challenge in designing this house was the high ceilings. Creating harmony between the floors and ceilings and all the space in between was difficult,” reveals Saleh. The use of natural light, reflective surfaces and organic materials give the home unexpected warmth regardless of the huge area while unique touches add character. Mixed with Roman pillars and dramatic arches, the mansion is at once grand and relaxing.
One of the most interesting features of the home is the conservatory. “It’s like an indoor garden,” she explains, “I created this one-of-a-kind feature from scratch to create a verdant space that was always available to be enjoyed, regardless of the weather conditions.” With its luscious plants, patio flooring and flowing fountain, it’s not a surprise that the homeowners spend most of their time in the adjacent living room. The soft, neutral furnishings that make the living area so comfortable are complimented by pieces that Saleh picked up during her travels and materials she had especially imported for the project. From Asian statuettes to recycled glass coffee tables, the room is eclectic yet simple thanks to the relaxed colour palette.
The guest bedroom takes the cosy, tranquil feel of the house one step further. Tucked high up in the corner of the second floor, its defining feature is a wrap-around window that fills the room with sunlight. “The bedroom is designed as a retreat. I went for a vintage feel to make it special; something you wouldn’t find anywhere else and perfect for escaping into,” explains Saleh. Its old-school, English blue and white patterned wallpaper and set off with a modern edge with spot lights and sleek flooring.
For Hala Saleh’s first foray into the world of interior design, this home is one that is often used to benchmark just how talented she is.