Radhika Seth, CEO and Founder of Sequoia London, looks at how the luxury interior design industry has had to keep up with the drastic changes of UHNW individuals.
Much like many other things in life, Architecture & Design has also evolved over the years; attempting to keep up with this ever-changing social climate we live in. Being the CEO & Founder of a company with predominately ultra-high-net-worth clients, we’ve had to continuously change a lot about the business to meet the needs of our clients.
The role of architects and interior designers has slowly developed as the purpose of our clients’ homes changed. They were no longer just hiring us to design a house but needed to bring someone on board who understood their way of life and knew how to incorporate that into a home. Design for us has become about the right combination of luxury and functionality; mastering that balance is imperative when designing modern-day homes for these clients.
All of our projects start with a basic understanding of our clients and how they tend to use their space. I think getting into the psyche and mindset of this level of clientele and making the time to get to know them is really the trick to retaining them.
Homes for UHNW individuals need to be multifaceted in this day and age, which have the ability to accommodate and adapt to different occasions, from work meetings to opulent dinner parties to movie nights to guests visiting for the night, while simultaneously being a private home that offers the day-to-day comfort for its homeowners. These homes are equipped and ready for any situation so that there is no real need to step outside. When clients are exposed to the best of everything from all over the globe, it means we as designers have no option but to be just as up-to-date, if not more so.
The new generation of UHNW individuals want to be different from the rest, they want something new and fresh to set them apart. And as a result of this, the level of creativity and innovation required of a luxury designer today is much higher than it once used to be.
In an industry dedicated to creating homes to reflect a lifestyle, it is evident that the concept and idea of luxury is being redefined every day. Not only in architecture and interiors but in fashion, hospitality, travel and much more.
Radhika Seth is the CEO & Founder of SEQUOIA London: interior design and lifestyle architects to the world’s richest. She has over two decades of experience in the luxury and decorative arts market and is a mentor and advocate of women in business; co-chair of TiE Women Entrepreneurs.