3rd February 2023 | IN EXPERT INSIGHT | BY SBID ShareTweetPinterestLinkedIn 4SPACE is celebrating its 10 year anniversary. Can you tell us how the company grew to this stage and what your visions are for the future? From humble beginnings, 4SPACE has grown from a small, humble office and a team of two to a buzzing design entity with over 20 employees with an expansive and vibrant office in the heart of Dubai. Founders Firas Alsahin and Amjad Hourieh always dreamed big. They understand that dreams without goals are merely dreams. They set appropriate goals and put in place a comprehensive 10-year plan to provide a roadmap for the necessary steps to achieve success. By the tenth anniversary, Design Middle East Awards bestowed 4SPACE the prestigious boutique firm of the year award in 2022. 4SPACE continues to grow, and the team aims to be the top international architectural and interior design firm by 2032, with branches across Europe and Asia. They have various projects in the pipeline, including hype entertainment venues, government commercial spaces, unique food and beverage concepts and a hospitality project. Papa Dubai Within the next five years, 4SPACE intends to transform from a boutique design studio to a much larger design firm with at least 50 employees by 2027 and over 140 by 2032. They aspire to be one of the top five design firms within the region by 2027. They aim to have a sustainable business model and dynamic company structure so that the company can expand into new areas of business, clients and markets. 4SPACE targets companies and private clients seeking a one-of-a-kind design and superior service. They are adopting a new company structure, systems, workflow, techniques and a sophisticated hiring strategy to achieve these changes. They anticipate that 4SPACE will promote much of their team to take on additional responsibilities and be involved in managing this vision and development. 4Space Office How have you found that projects, their requirements and client expectations have changed throughout your years in practice? Client expectations and requirements vary depending on market trends. Pre-pandemic, clients wanted open and shared spaces for a collaborative environment. During the pandemic, privacy and partition-closed spaces became necessary, with the online market and cloud kitchen prevalent. Post-pandemic, clients want innovative and sustainable designs. 4SPACE created many mind-blowing ideas from various techniques and 3D software programmes. Because of these changes, the team at 4SPACE has adapted, followed trends, learned new softwares and techniques and explored a host of different materials and designs. JUN_S restaurant Do you think the Metaverse will impact the interior design profession? What opportunities could it present for interior designers? The Metaverse is having an impressive impact on the design industry. Alsahin explains, “Brands and businesses will be more and more willing to be a part of the next big thing; they will need to exist where their customers exist and in order to achieve that, they need to invest in the virtual world”. Alsahin believes that the Metaverse is a stepping stone to cultural evolution and a limitless capacity for art. There are many more opportunities for designers inclined to use 3D software programmes. They used to quote, “From sketch to reality” with the formation of Meta4SPACE, the mantra has changed to “From sketch to metaverse world”. Alsahin continues, “In the near future, users will be able to use augmented reality smart glasses, which are wearable computer-capable glasses that add extra information; ideally 3D images and information such as animations and videos, to the user’s real-world scenes by overlaying the computer-generated or digital information over the user’s real-world”. Now that everything is limitless and with the advent of various Metaverse environments, the industry will need skilled designers and architects who can master future virtual and AI technology. “Virtual, augmented, and mixed reality technology will become important not just to present a designed space as a visualization method, but rather to be a designed form of space itself”. Meta4Space What are the most notable achievements 4SPACE has accomplished over the past decade? It takes many years to create something special. Over the last decade, 4SPACE has created a great team, has access to better technology and creating new goals. The team has received numerous awards and recognitions from internationally acclaimed award-winning bodies, including the SBID overall winner in 2018 and Design Middle East Awards boutique firm of the year 2022. With project requirements increasing, there is a new wave of employment opportunities post-pandemic. The new office space is fully automated and includes a new architecture company and Meta4SPACE and increasing staff levels. Power 50 nominated Alsahin for fourth place in this coveted award. SBID Awards 2018 What key advice would you give to emerging designers for building a successful interior design business? As the old saying goes, “no man is an island”. Building a company in a foreign land has its challenges. Success requires sound finances, and self and team trust are hugely important. 4SPACE has created a great team, ensures that no one is self-sufficient and encourages the team to rely on and support each other. Together, the team has various goals, ensuring they achieve them no matter what. Alsahin and Hourieh encourage their teams to succeed, be inspired, share insights and do better each day. They understand that physical and mental health is important and inspire their teams to have a healthy work-life balance, enjoy the fruits of their labour and pay it forward. Architecture Questions answered by Firas Alsahin, Co-Founder, 4SPACE. About 4Space Design Originally established in Damascus in 2001, founders, Firas Alsahin and Amjad Hourieh, moved their practice to Dubai to be at the centre of this vibrant market. The emirate’s booming growth in the commercial sector was an impetus for the firm to explore all the opportunities in the design industry. Eschewing quantity for quality, profile of the project and relationship with clients, the studio credit its people’s distinct ideas strategic business development. Visit Profile If you’d like to feature your news or stories with SBID, get in touch to find out more. If you’d like to become SBID Accredited, click here for more information.