Making your property of greater inspiration and value means working with the right professionals that don’t demand a certain style is implemented but rather a company that listens to your needs compliments your lifestyle and follows up even well after the project has finished.
You will find this and more with Luxoria, headed by the talented Bjarni Breidfjord
How did you start your career in interior design?
I studied at the Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona when a job offer brought me to the French Riviera in 2004. In 2007, friends of mine bought a villa in Mougins which needed some serious work and this was my first design assignment on the coast.
How long have you been working in the interior design?
I started 18 years ago but things only got serious when I opened my company Luxoria in 2007.
What inspires you?
My travels, history, art and anything I see that can spark an idea. A visit to the flea market or a gallery exhibition can prove inspiration. Needless to say, I’m also inspired by architecture and designs by my contemporaries.
Your work is very well known throughout the Côte d’Azur. How long has this part of the world been your home?
I landed here in Autumn 2004, my intention was to spend a year on the coast but the rest is history.
What makes the Côte d’Azur special for you?
I love the light on the French Riviera, the breathtaking landscapes and the diversity from Monaco to St. Tropez. It’s very romantic; I keep falling in love with the place time and time over.
And you also have an office in Paris?
We are based in Saint-Germain in Paris. When we opened there I made it a condition that it wouldn’t be too far to walk to Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots. I love Paris and tend to spend as much time there as possible.
Do you have a team of employees working with you?
I have a strong team and without them I wouldn’t be able to deliver the quantities of projects we do. I have an amazing, international team that stand by me and participate in my adventures.
Do you find it to be a beneficial to have a multi-cultural team because of your clientele base?
Yes, it is true we speak several languages but I think it’s also very interesting because we all approach the design from a different angle and the conversation becomes so much more alive.
We have also studied in different countries so the accentuation is different but to the benefit of the client.
I might also add that we are a mix of interior architects, product designers and industrial designers.
What is the first thing that usually captures your eye when you enter a room?
I am very sensitive to the flow inside any property we take on. I believe in energy and if it’s not fluid, there’s something not working. For me it all starts with the layout of each project we take on.
What does your own home say about you?
I would say it’s pretty revealing. It’s very eclectic with a mix of modern furniture including a dining table that I designed myself. The base of my home is monochromatic with a lot of colour burst especially through the modern art that I collect.
What advice would you give someone building or remodeling a villa or hotel?
To focus on the sensory experience for the people occupying the premises. How will they feel in the different areas of the property? How will the fluidity between the various parts of the dwelling feel? These are the things I would ask people to consider.
What are some of your favorite projects you have worked on?
My next project is always my favorite one. We have been blessed working with so many lovely people, some of them of which have become good friends.
A few projects that come to mind though are; an apartment in Saint-Germain in Paris, a villa for clients in Cannes, an entire office building in Monaco and a huge hotel project that we are currently working on in Reykjavik, Iceland.
How important are trends and do you infuse them in your work?
When it comes to interior design you have to either be with the trend or ahead of it. You have to be a step above otherwise things can get dated. I try to work on trends by adapting them to my own idea of what I think will stand the passage of time.
What makes your brand stand out from all the others?
We don’t impose a style on our clients; we are quite bespoke in the way we work. We have many exceptional traits but I’d say that our follow up, precision and project management skills are outstanding.
Do you find that your travels inspire you and that you can bring this into your work with various clients and projects?
Without a doubt, I love travelling to different locations and see what techniques they apply and what aesthetics are being valued. When you work in a creative field you are never done learning.
What would be your ideal location or project to work on?
We are currently building on a project on Avenue Montaigne in Paris. The location couldn’t be more prestigious and I also do love the bigger villa projects we have done in the French Riviera and we look forward to doing more of them in the future.
What are the benefits for a client to have a home done by a professional such as yourself?
The experience becomes hassle free and relaxing. We offer the clients insight into a world they might not be familiar with, both when it comes to choices of textures, fabrics, furniture. It’s as if they are taken by the hand and lead into a different universe. Generally the experience is quite interesting and we have fun with our clients.
How important is it for you that the architecture and interiors compliment each other?
It’s always nice if there’s a dialogue going on between the two. The landscaping also plays an important part and the communication between the different disciplines.
As part of a presentation and project, is it important that CAD drafter, 3D visualizer and/or spec writer be used?
We use many different tools to communicate our ideas; AutoCAD, Sketch-Up, Vray, Autodesk Fusion 360.
Clients like renderings not to mention mood boards which work magic as they give our clients the indication of the ambience we intend to create.
Do you find combining a modern contemporary style works well with a touch of eclectic taste?
Yes, this is easy to combine but people have to be careful when combining styles that their homes don’t end up like some sort of ratatouille!
How satisfying is it to see a client happy after a project has been done?
Very happy as it means that we have accomplished what we set out to do.
What have been some of your most challenging projects?
We have recently completed a country estate in Provence which required a major structural overhaul. We also built an extension to the property so the site supervision was intense but at the same time very interesting. I love projects that are educational for us when we learn something new.
What and/or who are some of your design inspirations?
The Salone del Mobili in Milan for me is amazing. The team and I usually go every year. Everything is so inspiring, this is where new ideas, concepts and products are launched.
There are many inspiring designers that I look up to and many of them are French. I’d perhaps mention, Fabrizio Casiraghi, Tristan Auer and Gilles et Boissiers.
What makes your work stand out from other designers?
Precision, attention to the smallest details and complete service package, down to the last tea spoon.
Do you have any rules that work for you when it comes to design?
I would rather say guidelines. With every project you are telling a story and you have to stick to the thread of that story. The thread can be about so many different elements: style, textures, colour, etc.
With many home products being accessible online these days, do you still think it is important as part of an investment that a property owner hire a professional such as yourself?
At the same time that things are available online it doesn’t make people experts. Despite the varied offers available, people are increasingly looking for things that are custom made, bespoke and unique. Good design and execution will always add value.
Do you have any ongoing or upcoming projects you can tell us about?
We have a boutique hotel coming up soon which we are waiting to sign, an interesting villa project close to Monaco not to mention the property on Avenue Montaigne in Paris. We are looking to a great year ahead.
All images courtesy Luxoria