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Neydine Bak, director of BASStudio, the firm behind Galaxy Bar in DIFC, shares her favourite spaces and places in Sydney
The sight that inspires me the most is… We are based in beautiful Sydney and the city is surrounded by incredible waterways and greenery. We have travelled extensively and have never come across a city that has this vibrant mix of landscape, beaches, blue waters and charming city in such close proximity.
The building I feel most connected to in the city is… the strand arcade in the CBD. It is an intimate space filled with boutique stores set amongst old-world charm detail that could rival any old laneway in any European city. The details, flooring, balustrading, large clock and ornate shopfronts are authentic and elegant compared to the strong architectural language of buildings and designs of our era.
A recent “find” is… difficult to narrow down. We never go to the same place twice unless we have to. Not because the places are not great but because there are so many new places to find. We recently discovered a little gallery space, which is not new at all, that we absolutely loved. It is called White Rabbit Gallery.
An object from outside my city that sits in my home… are the memories and treasures from all over the world. The latest find is an Inca sketch on a linen canvas from an Amazonian tribe. We purchased this one-off sketch on our trip to São Paolo recently.
On my coffee table you’ll always find… kids’ books and an odd toy. Our house is a mix of practicality with a few design items at the moment. Our kids are still very small, so we are surrounded by tons of children’s books, which have found a place in all corners of our home. Our kids absolutely love to read.
My favourite space in my city is… any beach. The beaches are amazing and they are so close to the city that if you choose the right beach, you have uninterrupted views of the Opera House with the city in the background. It makes for an amazing lunch break outside the office.
The last gift I received from someone in the city… were tickets for a Seaplane trip over the harbour and a flight all the way up the coast to have lunch at Bert’s. The view over the city and waterways on a beautiful day was just breathtaking. The excellent lunch was a wonderful bonus too.
My next investment… would be a trip for myself and my husband to Morocco. Travelling abroad enriches our design ability and stimulates our creative senses. We will always opt for great coffee, another stamp in our passports and new memories over a new coffee table.
My last memorable trip was to… South America this year. I have too many excellent memories to share, but I highly recommend it if you ever have the chance to go.
The thing I most look forward coming back to is… the easiness of living in Sydney. The beauty of the city and its excellent coffee culture.
If I didn’t live in my city, I would live in… Rio, Cape Town or Abu Dhabi. There are so many different cities with different cultures and riches to offer that we would love to live in as many places as we can. But for now, Sydney is incredible and we aren’t planning on going anywhere for the moment.
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