MEA Women in Business Awards 2017

4 MEA MARKETS / Women in Business Awards 2017 , Inspirations Décor has been providing a comprehensive architectural and interior design service for residential, commercial and hospitality properties. We profiled the firmand spoke to its founder, Hind Abu Ibrahim to find out more about the company and explore the secrets behind its success. Most Innovative Woman in Interior Designs 2017 & Best Woman-Run Architecture Firm- Dubai Founded in 2004, Inspirations Décor has provided stunning and inspirational décor to a variety of clients in many different aspects. Headed by Architect Hind Abu Ibrahim, a designer known for delivering trend setting design solutions for residential and commercial projects, the firm boasts a wealth of experience and extensive knowledge at the top. Hind is well known for overseeing and completing projects with similar design language from the exterior to the interior, particularly where the architecture plays a significant role in defining the interior spaces with the same identity. Hind gives us an insight into her passion for architecture, before reliving her early days, education and describing the satisfaction she feels when things fall into place. “With regard to my passion for architecture and interior design, I have always been interested by in the geometry of structures, such as shapes, volumes and spaces. A captivation with fascinating features, including the pyramids and other old buildings, led me to become the architect and interior designer I am today. At work and in my own time I like to complete puzzles, something I find satisfying as I like the idea to put things together and watch the build-up of structures. “Before university, it had always been my dream to study architecture. However, my family played a big role in influencing me to study Maths as a major, as this is what was expected of women at the time. Women were expected to have jobs in certain fields e.g. like education, banking, private sector, etc... However, I was so keen to study architecture and build a career, I was lucky enough to get a scholarship and my wish came true when I was granted a place at University. This was special for me as few people were accepted back then, and to have the opportunity to attend the main architecture school really helped me shape my career. Had it not have been for this, I would not be the architect I am today.” Following on from her discussion on the inspiration behind Hind’s decision to study architecture, she explains how she ended up starting Inspirations Décor, finding it easier to start up as an Interior Designer, rather than an architecture company. “Fundamentally, I seized my chance when it came. I started up as freelance and ended up establishing a leading company in Interior design and Architecture. It was easier to start up as an Interior Designer, as Architecture was mainly dominated by men in the workspace. The market did not allow me, as a woman to take a job in architectural design. In the recent history, the general culture has changed with the vision of the leaders, clients opened to listen to more ideas and more open to listen to women as architects.” Interestingly, with regard to women working in the UAE, Women benefit immensely from the vision of the leaders. His Highness Sheik Mohamad bin Rashid al Maktoum, and his Highness Sheik Mohamad bin Zayed al Nahyan, as leaders they influence the culture not only to empower women, but empower the whole community through women. Through a series of public and private sector initiatives, women are playing an increasingly stronger WNB17009 role in business, military and government. Women are encouraged to take jobs that have historically been dominated by men before, something Hind was able to sense when she moved to Dubai 17 years ago. Hind was very encouraged by the fact that clients were offering her projects despite the fact that she was seven months pregnant at the time. However, despite the victories women have achieved over recent years, the construction and architecture market remains very challenging for women, particularly those who wish to work on the ground. It is mainly a male dominated field, and there have been many situations where Hind has found herself being the only woman sitting around the table and leading a meeting. Hind finds this difficult, but manageable at the same time, as she has been regarded being the principle architect of these big projects. It would be very difficult and challenging to hire women and send them on site, because the culture is not yet ready to deal with women on site, that is common across most countries in this region. Hind provides us with