Sitting on the 10th floor of the Shoreline building – one of the oldest on the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai – with spectacular views of the sea and the Burj Khalifa, this two-storey, 340-square metre apartment with four bedrooms, five bathrooms and two living spaces required a lot of work to get it to its current state.
“The apartment needed a full renovation,” says Saudi interior architect Urjowan Alsharif, founder of her Dubai-based studio Urjowan Interiors. “Nothing was usable or salvageable, so we gave the penthouse a fresh new look to help not only with the aesthetic, but also with functionality.”
The team had to also take into consideration the special needs of one of the family members, who is a person of determination. Making the space accessible was at the heart of the project, where a glass lift was installed, all the doors were enlarged, and the bathrooms were designed according to ADA standards.
“The biggest challenge was to conceive a luxury escape that is also wheelchair-friendly,” says Alsharif, who took three months for the design and three additional months for the execution.
Focusing on natural textures, the design team shaped two bespoke Statuario marble arches in the apartment: one on the ground floor to frame the entryway to the double-height space, and one on the first floor leading to the bedrooms. The same marble was also used for the high skirting that wraps around the entire space and serves to ’protect’ the wall from the wheelchair. The new glass railing, with a bespoke smoked brass metal frame, and the stairs reflect a beautiful grain, flowing seamlessly from the ground up. Urjowan Interiors opted for the same bespoke metal to adorn the trim of the seven-metre-high ceiling. “We used seven different stones and marbles in the project, which all play so well off of each other,” Alsharif describes.
Travertine and oak, as well as soft grey walls with moulding – which added a touch of sophistication – complement the harmonious atmosphere, where the light and airy palette combines with soft textures and rich hues of sand and sea blues. The result is a laid-back yet elegant look and feel that the owners desired.
“The design aesthetic was centred around this effortless luxury that goes so well with beachfront living,” says Alsharif, who drew inspiration from the surroundings to introduce a coastal vibe to the space. “We wanted the owners to feel like they are in a five-star resort hotel.”
Designed to host the extended family whenever they visit Dubai, the penthouse comprises three guest bedrooms that were designed according to the same Zen concept, but with different accent tones. In the different spaces of the apartment, colour is injected through a few pieces such as the Phillip Jeffries wallpaper in the dining room, with blue tones echoing the outside views and dialoguing with the floor-to-ceiling Palissandro blue marble that acts as a backdrop for the TV in the living room. In the powder room, the bold green marble, called Cipollino Nuvolato, is also reminiscent of the sea.
“We like building a narrative around crafting second homes – an escape, a sanctuary away from the daily routine,” Alsharif shares. “We noticed [that] clients are more susceptive to approve bolder design choices in their second homes.”
Through fine craftsmanship, intricate detailing, a careful selection of textures and layering of materials, this penthouse reflects everything an elevated coastal home should be.
Photography by Natelee Cocks