Labour of love

Labour of loveImage Credit: Khaja Anwar

You know a house is a home when its story has a hard-to-miss element of humanity in it. Khaja Anwar’s address in the prestigious Polo Villas community boasts just that.

After all, not everybody would commission the design of their residence to an unknown Syrian architect, based on the fact that he is a young, unemployed man who had been forced to leave his country due to the unstable political situation. To Anwar’s good fortune, Firas Shaar prove to be a more than capable individual who turned Anwar’s vision into stunning reality.

Anwar, who owns Façade Fyziks Group, a company that specialises in architectural facades, had a fair idea of what he wanted his dream house to look like. His strong design aesthetic was consistently backed by creative input from his wife Sameena Yasmeen.

What hits one immediately on entering the villa is the abundance of space, which was a driving factor in Anwar’s choice of the Polo Villas community. “I was looking for big plots and not a ready-made home,” he says. “Bigger plot sizes ranging from 16,000-30,000 sq ft are hard to come by in Dubai, especially in gated communities. There are some in Emirates Hills but just a handful.

“Polo Villas, however, has 71 mansions of these plot sizes. This was the main factor that made me zero in on this community — the larger plot size and a bigger built-up area.”

The Middle Eastern influence in the house is hard to miss, right from the beautiful decorative mashrabiya pillars in the hall to the cen tral reception area resembling an Arabia-inspired courtyard with a soothing fountain, which immediately puts visitors at ease.

The ground floor of the double-storeyed villa is also home to Anwar’s study, where he not only hosts friendly snooker games but also conducts business. Assuming its pride of place here is Anwar’s wall of fame lined with photographs that represent various milestones in his life.

The dining room comes alive with a 24-seater neoclassic dining table that was custom-built in China, and a 16-seater neoclassic sofa set. Yasmeen says the fam ily loves entertaining, and massive barbecues in their backyard are quite common.

To nail the colour scheme of the house, Anwar looked towards a time-honoured source of inspiration. He says, “For hundreds of years, mosques and churches have used only white for their inside walls. I realised there must be a science and some valid reasons behind it, so I opted for the same. Minimal colours [have been] used but in some places, I have gone for dark brown too.”

Anwar describes his style as a fusion of the classic and contemporary. While the classic theme is reserved for the living area and lounge on the ground floor, the bedrooms reflect contemporary elements. Not one to shy away from the unusual, the pièce de résistance in Anwar’s bedroom is an en-suite jacuzzi bathtub, complete with an iPad slot. The chil-dren’s rooms are all simply but tastefully done with just the right amount of colour.

A tour of the house is incomplete without taking a few minutes to appreciate the view of the nearby polo club from a window upstairs, which is a real treat. No amount of flair for design can rival the thrill of being able to watch majestic horses from the comfort of your home.

Source: Jehan Nizar, Special to Property Weekly


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