Trend-setting interior designer René Dekker is known around the world in the interiors industry for his uncompromising attention to detail, and his impeccable sense of quality and luxury. “I wouldn’t say I have a signature style, but three words that describe my work would be: considered, tailored, refreshing. We don’t have a House Style so I think potential clients understand that we can give them what they think they want. On top of this we are creative, efficient and organised, which is what clients should expect.”
René admits that although every job is different, there are some constants that he adheres to regardless of the scale or requirements of the project. “I’ve worked on a variety of schemes around the world in China, Russia, South Africa, USA, Europe and here in the UK. These include residential apartments to luxury homes and yachts, to commercial interior design work such as hotels, spas and restaurants. But the one thing I do for every project I undertake is to follow the same procedure from start to finish with integrity.”
This procedure includes an honest commitment to provide his clients with a luxury interior design to suit their needs, and these will contain a faultless finish that exudes glamour and elegance. “My design mantra is to be bold or go home! I always tell anyone who will listen that you should not give a client a scheme that they could have achieved themselves – what is the point of that? Translate what they want into something that will give them complete enjoyment, and then add the pizazz!”
So, having dealt with other people’s homes and gained more than 25 years invaluable experience, what would his own, perfect home contain? “In terms of rooms, I would have a reception room, an open plan dining area and kitchen, a guest WC, three en suite bedrooms, a study, a media room with all the mod cons and, if possible, a small gym.”
And what would it look like? “My ideal changes on a daily basis, depending on which project I am working on but I would have to say I veer towards contemporary. I like unfussy but well-detailed joinery, luxury kitchens and luxury bathrooms should consist of more than one element so ideally stone mixed with mosaic, big windows, lots of finishes, and a moody colour scheme.”
When it comes to furnishings and accessories, does René use the same approach in his own home as he does with his clients? “All of my possessions have a classical element to them – be it in the design of a table leg, the fabric, or the proportion of a piece of furniture. My favourite piece of furniture is an armchair and, that too, would have to have a touch of Classicism – I like things that are beautiful and have a sense of longevity to them. In a world of ‘disposable’, it is an absolute luxury to be able to hold something that you bought 10 years ago and still feel that it is part of your life.”
Wanting to create the perfect environment also depends very much on making the right colour choices. For René, his schemes create a sense of calm, which starts with choosing the right colour palette. “By keeping this limited, you create a blank canvas, which is what I’ve also done in our own home so we can incorporate our art collection. In terms of specific colours though, at the moment I’m a big fan of gold and charcoal is a close second.”
So it seems Rene Dekker, the luxury interior designer and the man at home, is very much like the designs he creates – professional, elegant, and above all in possession of that all-important touch of class.