id partnershp: identity speaks to Mohsin Jawaheri, founder of Dubai’s Super Studio, about his future plans for the brand, his relationship with Cassina and building a new creative community
Can you give us a general background about yourself and Super Studio?
I have been in the design business for over two decades. Before Super Studio, I co-founded Innovate Design & DesignLab. I then went on to project management, building projects for VIP clients and members of the royal family. It was then that I finally began my real passion: Super Studio. We are a leading furniture distributor based in Dubai and working across the entire Gulf region. Super Studio began operating in 2012 and represents award-winning iconic ranges of furniture, lighting and objects by globally recognised designers. We have over 40 super brands from Europe and North America, adopting an eclectic mix of established and up-and-coming names.
Our super collection of super stuff created by super talented people spreads across multiple sectors, adopting a collaborative style that works in any environment. We work with a wide roster of incredible brands, including Moooi, Lapalma, Bocci, Tom Dixon, Piet Boon, Giopato & Coombes, Cappellini and La Chance, among many others. Super Studio showcases a lifestyle environment in its showroom, which is a place for design professionals to experience the super collection in a unique setting that is a perfect visual example of endless possibilities from our versatile product range.
There have been ups and downs, but the dream hasn’t changed (unlike our logo). Thanks to our values, and our wisdom, our clients have every faith that we will continuously strive to exceed their expectations in everything we do.
What are some of your future plans for Super Studio?
We are planning to open a retail concept store – ‘Super Store’ – which will be both online and a physical space featuring its own café. We are also partnering up with Italian lighting brand Davide Groppi to open a monobrand store in Dubai. These are two important ventures among the many planned future expansions at Super Studio.
Can you tell us more about the history of your relationship with Cassina and your involvement in the opening of the brand’s first monobrand flagship showroom in Dubai?
Cassina has always been close to my heart, and I have huge respect for the culture there. Super Studio was one of the authorised companies in the UAE supplying Cassina’s products to the market; however, the brand needed stronger representation and the only solution was to open its first monobrand flagship showroom in the region, which is now currently under construction and set to open very soon. I was tasked by Cassina to consult on selecting and appointing a new exclusive partner for the brand in the UAE. This took us close to 18 months to execute and is now finally becoming a reality. I was involved on all aspects of the project; from choosing the location to appointing the local architect as well as the lifestyle setting for the new showroom, and I am proud to have played a significant role in this incredible venture with Cassina.
Tell us more about your new creative development project in Al Quoz?
After completing my work with Cassina in Italy and the UAE, I realised that it is important for Super Studio to continue striving, and the only way forward was to expand. I have now launched a new firm, ‘424 Investments’, to design and construct a new creative development in Al Quoz in line with the Al Quoz Creative Zone Authority. Zrobim Architects have been appointed to design the masterplan and develop the full design scope of the project, which will feature roughly 200,000 square feet [18,580 square metres] of mixed-use leasable commercial spaces.
How will this project bridge a gap in the city’s creative sector, and what do you hope to achieve with it?
I was once told, ‘you either go big or go home’, so I decided to go mega big! After a long period of being challenged to find new spaces for our new ventures, and having been continuously asked if I know of rentable spaces in Al Quoz, I decided to build it myself. Al Quoz has been home to Super Studio for over 10 years, and I have always found it a cool place to work. I hope to develop a creative hub that is affordable; one that will become home to some of the region’s and the world’s leaders in the industry. It is one of the most challenging and biggest projects of my life so far and I’m enjoying every step of it.