Meet Galal Mahmoud, the Architect behind the esteemed DEOS of the Myconian Collection.
With a masterful touch, Galal Mahmoud deftly crafts designs that embody the essence of each location. His exceptional work seamlessly aligns with the captivating «sense of space» in remarkable ventures, such as the new resort of the Myconian Collection, DEOS.
Interview: Vivian Vourtsa
Given the unique philosophy behind the new extraordinaire property, what was the driving force that led you to the specific design?
Our creative thoughts were driven by the very strong bond I have with the island for the past 35 years. It was not about designing just another “nice” hotel on the island but creating something unique that truly connects the visitors to the true essence of what has captivated visitors since the birth of travel to Mykonos. Given the exceptional value of the location, it was also about ensuring that each guest, wherever he is on the property, is constantly in direct relationship with what the location has to offer best; the soul of the old town and its windmills, the Aegean Sea with its rosary of Cycladic islands and last but not least, the amazing sunsets.
What are the main characteristics of the new type of guest room experience you developed?
With such a location, it becomes essential to develop an inside/out and vice versa experience. The rooms are quite large by any of the recent luxury standards providing ample spaces for sleeping, lounging and relaxing all facing the magnificent views. Large terraces are a natural extension of the room with all the needed settings such as large pool, day beds, large couches and dining area, hence allowing for that seamless inside out experience.
The finishes used are inspired by the drift wood tonalities, usually found on the sea shore, creating muted tonalities and textures that frame and contrast with the sea/sky vistas of every room.
How would you describe this “New Hotel” every conscious traveler wants to stay in and talk about?
What travelers are seeking today is true luxury that is defined by very well-crafted spaces, intimate immersion with the true locale, as well as understated yet timeless and elegant design; and most of all authentic experiences.
Integrating local architecture and culture into luxury hospitality creates a design that encompasses the life on the island.
Which is your solution to the enigma of performing the “true sense of place?”
It becomes very subtle and yet essential to translate the sense of place to such location. This is produced through a very deep and thorough understanding of the local culture, history, geography and topography. It is then translated into a vocabulary that transcends the whole project in a very subtle and sometime subliminal way. This is what makes a place so memorable that you want to come back.
In terms of an exceptional Myconian property, what is the golden ratio between master planning, architecture and interior design?
They all carry the same weight and importance for such a project. Thus, it has become the essence of our creative process for all our projects. My extensive experience in bridging all these trades, as well as, my diverse team of planners, architects, designers and curators allow us to think of all aspects from scratch, as soon as we start designing the project. As already mentioned, there is a constant dialogue between the site, the architecture, the interiors and the planning throughout the design stages, which is paramount to the success of such a venue.
From the warm and earthy hues to the wooden furniture and stone details, the very essence of Mykonos is always present.
If the Athenian Riviera was the inspiration for your next design, what character would that have?
I think that this exceptional location benefits from its immediate relationship with the sea, while at the same time being within the city with ample spaces for greenery. This can create interesting contrasts and offer the opportunity to create a new lifestyle, where urbanity blends with nature and sea side living. Covid has awakened our true needs for a balanced and healthy life, while preserving our natural environment, and has thankfully started to shift our attention away from fake and trendy driven shortcuts. The Athenian Riviera has all the right recipes to produce such objectives. Therefore, our design approach would be to work in that direction by crafting spaces that allows for this seamless experience where air, natural light, greenery and water are harmoniously integrated in your living spaces procuring the core of our design philosophy which is the good life.
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