16 November 2018Last updated

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A stunning apartment in Downtown Dubai

Areeb Yassine lives in this stunning Downtown apartment with her husband and their two young children. Here she tells us about the evolution from a living space to a family home

Tabitha Barda
22 Sep 2016 | 03:17 pm
  • Some of the stand-out features of the house are inthis room – the two walls painted blue, the high ceiling and the grapevine chandelier.”

    Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 1 of 7
  • Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 2 of 7
  • “I would say our home is eclectic, Levantine contemporary and child-friendly.”

    Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 3 of 7
  • Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 4 of 7
  • “The backgammon table hung on the wall was my husband’s before we got married and is the one he used to teach me how to play.”

    Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 5 of 7
  • Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 6 of 7
  • “I love our bedroom because it makes me feel like I’m on a tropical holiday. I love the calm colours and the greenery in the soft furnishings.”

    Source:Aiza Castillo-Domingo/ANM Image 7 of 7

WE HAVE BEEN LIVING HERE FOR A YEAR NOW. When we first bought this place, it looked nothing like it does now. The major work was all done in two weeks – painting, hanging curtains and chandeliers. The furniture and accessories took about another three weeks.

When we moved in, I worked hard on decluttering and I do it regularly now. Our lovely designer, Nisrine El Lababidi from Harf Noon Design, was the one who taught me that if you don’t need something and it doesn’t serve a purpose, it’s OK to let it go. It’s as simple as that!

We had a few sleepless nights, looking at couches and trying to narrow down the style that would work with the overall look and feel of our home. We were also looking for child-friendly furniture. Nisrine suggested a leather couch. Most of the furniture has a soft edge, or no edges at all.

When I started following Harf Noon Design on Instagram, I saw things that I wanted in my home. I loved how Nisrine made everything come together so harmoniously. I loved a post of hers about a mother-of-pearl mirror... Her appreciation of an almost-extinct craftsmanship made me contact her directly.

I often get inspiration from places I have visited. When decorating this home, I used Pinterest and Apartment Therapy for inspiration too.

In the UAE, I shop for interiors at West Elm, because they have a lovely craftsmanship. Ikea is also good as it has everything for every style.

I think our home reflects the diversity of our backgrounds – Saudi, Syrian, Tunisian. I love to show this in certain pieces in the house, such as the TV cabinet and the backgammon table on the wall. It’s a simple and welcoming home that fits our easy-going, kid-focused life style. I love a lot of our stuff but, honestly, it’s the people in a place that make it a home and they are the most precious.

The expert’s perspective

Nisrine El Lababidi Moghraby is an interior designer at Harf Noon Design Studio. Here she tells us how she worked with Areeb to help create the family home.

“For Areeb’s house, we were going for a warm mid-century eclectic feel with vintage, modern and arabesque bits thrown in. I wanted to accentuate the double-height ceiling, which is why we created the custom-made canvas and hung the artwork as high as possible. 
The space also had to use kid-friendly materials that are easy to clean and shapes that will minimise accidents. The colours are easily adaptable for future changes should they feel the need. Overall, the house had to look like its people – a multicultural, warm family home, and I believe we succeeded in that goal.”

For more from Nisrine, visit

Tabitha Barda

Tabitha Barda

Deputy Editor