Born in Holland, René moved with his family to spend his early years in South Africa, which is where his interest in luxury interior design first started. “Looking back, I think it was in my early childhood, probably when I was about 12, that I began to show signs of artistry, and did planned drawings of my ultimate home. I probably still have them somewhere!”
How did you start in interiors?
“When I was younger, my family decided to leave Holland for warmer climate as my father was a fruit broker. So, I grew up in South Africa in the 80s when luxury interior design was pretty much undiscovered. When I realised it was a possible career, I was amazed. I thought ‘could something that is so creative and so much fun be a real job?’ It seemed it was, and I was delighted!”
Did you need any qualifications?
“Yes, I did a qualification in South Africa, and soon after graduating I started work on my own designs as well as gaining invaluable experience with other designers. Once I got to a certain level of experience, I decided the best place to come to for the next step of my career, would be the UK. So I moved here in 1999.”