Cape Town interior designer adds artistic dimension to Airbnb

2017-04-28 12:28 - Kavitha Pillay
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Cape Town - With the aim to revolutionise the all-ready revolutionary Airbnb, a Cape Town interior designer, Dylan Thomaz, is connecting art with the home to create quality designed interior spaces for travellers that meet international standards.

Studio Dylan Thomaz, established in 2015, is re-decorating holiday homes in the Western Cape by incorporating emerging artists’ brands and then managing the short-term letting for the Airbnb hosts.

SEE: Cape Winelands dominate SA's friendliest accommodation - Airbnb

After 10 years in the retail, interior design and marketing industries, Thomaz is merging the worlds of art, retail and hospitality on a more personal level.

Following his passion for Cape Town’s dynamic art scene, he established Studio Dylan Thomaz with a focus on three elements: the gallery, interior design and happiness – because “it all boils down to happiness,” he says.

SEE: PICS: Airbnb launches unique SA outdoor accommodation

“When I left the retail industry, I really wanted to find a way to give back to people who don’t always have access to art,” says Dylan.

Dylan Thomaz at his studio. (Photo: Supplied).

Studio Dylan Thomaz incorporates artistic creations into the interior design branch of the business, giving customers something fresh, while encompassing the hospitality industry.

So why Airbnb projects?

"Art is not a necessity but it should be, and good design should be accessible to everyone," says Thomaz.

He said that while he was initially approached by clients to work on Airbnb homes - to redo the space and manage properties - he has been inspired by the diversity of his business to continue working on Airbnb projects. "I saw a gap, embraced it and made it viable," says Thomaz, who has so far worked on 8 Airbnb spaces and manages 5 of those spaces.

One of the rooms decorated by Studio Dylan Thomaz. (Photo: Facebook).

There are more than 300 holiday homes in Cape Town listed on Airbnb. “This is a high-demand area for overseas tourists, and homeowners need something that sets them apart. This is where the Studio Dylan Thomaz brand association works well. Lettor’s know they are getting a quality designed interior in a home that is well managed and up to international standard.”

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Airbnb projects

Dylan transformed a 30m2 apartment in Kloof, Cape Town, into a retreat for an Airbnb guest with a refined pallet. "This was one of the challenging projects because it was a small space," he says.

This room is in a building that was once a hotel, and each room was sold separately when the hotel was closed. "I wanted to turn it into a better hotel room," says Thomaz.

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Thomaz just completed another 3-bedroom Airbnb space. "It's a space for families and people coming for kite-surfing. I always consider the people who will be staying at the Airbnb when decorating, and what makes people feel comfortable. I create a home away from home," says Thomaz.

Creating the African experience

When recreating Airbnb spaces, Thomaz says he usually adds an "African feel". "People spend money to come to South Africa to experience the African feel and look. They want an African experience, so I try to include a bit of Africa with decor - adding African baskets and bead work ... elements that make it feel African," he says.

SEE: 4 Easy steps to becoming an experience host on Airbnb Trips

See Dylan Thomaz at Decorex

Dylan Thomaz will feature at this year’s Decorex Cape Town Designer Spotlight installation, where he and his team will craft a living room and dining space merging old and new worlds. Decorex Cape Town takes place at the Cape Town International Conference Centre until 30 April.

SEE: #LivingDream: The art of lifestyle and design at Decorex SA 2017

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