The Shaikhs have a perennially bustling, laughter-filled Hattan villa in the Arabian Ranches, thanks to their four children and two dogs, who ensure no two days are the same in this six-bedroom space that they’ve lived in for the past five years.
Given Shamrez’s real-estate role, as the Director and Chief Operations Officer of Shaikh Holdings, they perhaps had a bit of a bonus card when it came to decorating their own home. Saher admits one of Shamrez’s projects directly influenced their current home. “We’re greatly inspired by the concept behind Sanctuary Falls, where our dream home is being built. We love the resort lifestyle and the philosophy that our home is our sanctuary – a place of light, music, fragrance and serenity, where you can shut the door and leave the world behind,” she says.
Avid art and antiques collectors, the Shaikhs have gathered quite the treasure trove. “My father used to own an antique and collectibles store in England, so I grew up appreciating objects with a story,” explains Saher. “My husband has developed an equally keen eye for stunning art and unusual antiques, so it’s something we enjoy sourcing together.” The late painter and film director MF Husain even dedicated a painting to Saher. “The world won’t see the likes of him again for a while,” she opines.
Sentimentality abounds, epitomised by the white sculpted chair – a gift from Saher’s godfather – that the Shaikhs have given a pride of place alongside a blown-glass tree hauled all the way over from Bali, and by an 1802 Café de Paris painting found in a Nice antiques market. Their children’s artwork hangs alongside a commissioned work from London-based calligrapher Aadil Abedi. It’s also evident that their outdoor area has been tended to with love and care. “The herb garden is our main pride and joy. Every evening, the children gather fresh, organic cherry tomatoes and other vegetables to be used for dinner,” smiles Saher.
● If you have children, keep clutter to a minimum by ensuring toys are put away regularly into easy to access storage units straight after use.
● Picking up trinkets during your travels and incorporating them into your home decor will continuously trigger happy holiday memories.