When exposed to the idea of connection between the creative mind and our experiences, I cannot help but become instantly intrigued. From a personal level, everything that I have experienced through my years, be it personally or professionally, has shaped my way of thinking.

Every encounter influences how we evolve as designers. Let’s take it back to the last time you travelled, or your last memory as a child:

"Where were you walking? What did you see? In each and every encounter there is a source of inspiration."

Image - The energy and spirit of south beach Miami inspired my design philosophy behind our SLS hotel in Downtown Dubai, opening in 2020.


Every one of us becomes immersed in sources of pure inspiration on a daily basis. Through the years, we absorb everything through travel, cultures, books, film, art... the list is endless, with each one having an immense impact on who and what shapes us as an individual.

Certain inspirations, certain experiences may even take years to sink in. However, they remain constant in our subconscious.

In some cases, it may be your un-state mind that becomes the most important element in revealing your subconscious mind. We all have a wealth of experience that we shouldn’t close our minds to.

“We have to surrender ourselves to this way of thinking, and allow past moments to take over and guide our design direction.”

The blank canvas of walls surrounding Naples in Italy influenced my diverse approach in Wavehouse, Atlantis the Palm to adorn each crevice with intriguing creative content.


Massimo Bottura was a truly inspiring character that comes to mind when speaking about the connection between the creative mind and our experiences. The man draws from bygone days to innovate ideas and bring them into modern day life. Torno Subito is a prime example. Massimo desired to recreate his memories of 1950s/60s spent on the Rimini beachside in Italy.

As we spoke about the concept, our experiences became intertwined as we reminisced about Italian pop culture, Memphis and Fellini. We shared similar experiences, him through his childhood and myself through my studies, which led to the realization of Torno Subito in the W Palm hotel, Dubai.

Our experiences are what define us as designers. Allow yourself to become submissive to them.

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