De­signs on lux­ury

Own­ing a suc­cess­ful hol­i­day home in Cornwall means cre­at­ing a lux­u­ri­ous in­te­rior that will keep guests com­ing back

Cornwall Life - - HOMES & INTERIORS -

If you’ve re­cently pur­chased a hol­i­day home, it makes sense to let it out when you can’t use it. The lux­ury let mar­ket in Cornwall in par­tic­u­lar is boom­ing, so we caught up with Elaine Skin­ner, de­sign di­rec­tor of Camel­lia In­te­ri­ors, a Corn­wall­based in­te­rior de­sign stu­dio, who reg­u­larly ad­vises own­ers on how to cap­i­talise on this po­ten­tially lu­cra­tive niche. We asked her what a new hol­i­day home­owner should know be­fore hir­ing an in­te­rior de­signer.

‘Be­fore you get started, try to keep these four key things in mind and your lux­ury hol­i­day home re­fur­bish­ment will be com­pleted on time, on bud­get and look ex­actly how you dreamt it would, which ul­ti­mately means max­imis­ing your rev­enue and in­vest­ment,’ ex­plains Elaine.


Hire the best – in­te­rior de­sign is a busi­ness, al­beit a cre­ative one, so you will want to hire an In­te­rior De­signer with ide­ally a mas­ter’s de­gree in de­sign, a long prac­tice his­tory with lux­ury hol­i­day home in­dus­try ex­pe­ri­ence. There is a big dif­fer­ence be­tween an in­te­rior de­signer and an in­te­rior dec­o­ra­tor, who has of­ten only done a short course or is self­taught. If you’re work­ing on a re­model, chang­ing the lay­out to achieve bet­ter func­tion­al­ity through the space and re­quire guid­ance be­yond aes­thet­ics, then an in­te­rior de­signer is your best choice.

A well-con­nected in­te­rior de­signer has many skills and re­sources that they can pass onto you plus they will con­sider ev­ery el­e­ment of the prop­erty and can ad­vise on all the as­so­ci­ated trades needed.


Write a wish list – your in­te­rior de­signer will need to know what you want to achieve from the out­set – the more plan­ning done early on, the more re­al­is­tic costs can be. They can then ad­vise you on what else can be achieved and what pro­vi­sional sums are likely to be. Far bet­ter than get­ting three-quar­ters of the way down the road and bolt­ing ad­di­tional work on that blows the costs and tim­ings and leaves ev­ery­one fall­ing out!


Talk money early on – while it would be nice to think that your in­te­rior de­signer has your bud­get in mind – this usu­ally isn’t the case. Un­less you clearly dis­cuss your mon­e­tary lim­its at the start, your de­signer is go­ing to choose the best fea­tures in qual­ity and struc­ture. If you have hired the right de­signer, they will give you some ideas on what changes to your de­sign plan need to be made to help you stay within that bud­get and ad­vise you on what is or is not es­sen­tial in the lux­ury mar­ket.

De­cide also if you want them to source and sup­ply ev­ery­thing, or if you want them to source while you sup­ply, as their fee struc­ture will vary ac­cord­ingly. Most in­te­rior de­sign­ers make their money from the dis­counts they get through sup­ply­ing – so it pays to be up­front from the be­gin­ning.


Re­mem­ber you can say no – while it might not be easy to say that you don’t like some­thing once it’s been done, your in­te­rior de­signer won’t be of­fended if you dis­miss an idea. You are pay­ing them for a project you love and it’s their job to de­liver. If they add an el­e­ment you dis­like, say it and con­fi­dently move along. While the in­te­rior de­signer may not agree with your de­sign choice, the fi­nal de­ci­sion is not up to them. Re­mem­ber, the project is your home, not theirs, so it is ul­ti­mately your de­ci­sion as to what de­sign el­e­ments stay and which ones go.

Un­der­stand­ing these things will keep your re­la­tion­ship with your in­te­rior de­signer friendly and smooth. If your pro­fes­sional re­la­tion­ship is on track and you un­der­stand how the busi­ness works, you should be pleas­antly sur­prised with the fi­nal out­come and maybe even come in un­der bud­get!

‘Please re­mem­ber in­te­rior de­sign­ers are skilled pro­fes­sion­als and should be treated as such.

So, set your emo­tions aside and make a busi­ness deal with your de­signer – a deal that makes ev­ery­one happy and cre­ates a last­ing home de­sign that you will love for years to come,’ fin­ishes Elaine.

If you have a re­fur­bish­ment or ren­o­va­tion project of a lux­ury hol­i­day home you need help with or to speak to Elaine please call 01872 248592 or email [email protected]­li­ain­te­ri­ camel­li­ain­te­ri­

Tac­tile style and high-end fi­nesse are the trade­mark of lux­ury projects

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