When in your life did this passion for design engulf you?
I have grown up in a family that is driven by design. As far back as I can remember when I was eight or so, my uncle (Pinakin Patel), took me to his sites and various exhibitions at the Jehangir Art Gallery… that’s probably when it subconsciously started brewing in my system. It completely engulfed me when I was in my 3rd year of college in the US when I had to do up my apartment (was fortunate enough to rent one instead of living in the college dorm), and ended doing a decent job of it. My friends were envious and when my family visited they thought I was living rather lavishly for a college kid and even considered cutting down my monthly allowance!
We heard that Pinakin Patel is officially retiring from design and is handing over Pinakin Design LLP (PDLLP) over to you and Pallavi Choksi. Will we see a drastic change in the design language from PDLLP from now on? As the brand’s new custodian, what are the objectives of the firm going forward?
Well, someone like him can never really truly retire as he is contantly working on something related to design. He works harder than me even today but yes, he has handed over the reins of the professional services to us. I don’t think you will see a drastic change in the design language but most definitely there will be a younger, more fresher approach to a project and life that revolves around it. The objectives of the firm going forward is to reach out to a younger audience besides the old faithfull’s and continue to create spaces where we constantly push the boundaries of conventional designs.
PDLLP has introduced a Pret Divison. Tell us a little more about it.
The Pret line is to reach out to a younger audience that is more casual and self-expressive, and are working with tight budgets but with high design objectives. Basically a pret line that goes beyond this firm’s small, ultra-rich niche market.
What are the big projects that are keeping you busy these days?
All my projects big or small keep me busy. Unfortunately, I am not at liberty to share names as most of the work we do are private residences.
How do you work with your client to create their dream space?
No two spaces are alike. Classic or contemporary, kitsch or minimal, the options are limitless. Every space has a story to tell. For me when a client walks into a space that has been created for him and he instantly belongs and connects with it. That is the true success.
On a lighter note…
Your quirkiest design inspiration?
Nothing quirky that I can remember has inspired me yet. Will keep my eyes open.
Given a choice, the country you would shift to and why?
I am a creature of habit, no shifting out of Mumbai for me, at least for the
If you could be a fictional character who would you be and why?
I am not one for fiction but James Bond would be one, if I had to choose, for obvious reasons.
How do you unwind?
By playing Poker.
The funniest moment in your design career?
When I went to the Milan Fair eight years ago with a client to shop for their home… the client ended up spending more on her furs and handbags!