From the First Moment of Magic to the Last Drop of Reality
One of the joys of moving to a new country is the opportunity to create a new home from scratch. All those times you’ve dreamed about creating your perfect home... Well, now is your chance.
Of course, you don’t have to actually move in order to change the look of your home. Perhaps you’re just ready for a change. And then comes the big challenge. What you do actually want? Where do you find it? What are your options? How much does it cost? Who can help you think it all through and come up with something that has you excited about it from Day One? And, last but not least, how do you do this in another country, culture, and language?
Passion has become an inflated word, but if there is a single word that comes to mind when you meet Angelika Barzilay, of Barzileye, it is passion. Highly-charged with energy, compassion and intuition, in combination with talent, experience, and cultural versatility, Angelika is the person you want at your side when discovering the realm of unimagined options. As you let go of all your anchors and explore the world of dreams and possibilities, she is the one who will soar with you, while keeping a firm eye on what is achievable, given your space, budget and needs, to create a place where you feel that, yes, this is where you belong, where you want to be.
‘As you let go of all your anchors and explore the world of dreams and possibility, Angelika is the one who will soar with you’
“To me, each project is a story. When getting to know my client, I follow my intuition: I look into their eyes and listen to their voice, to get to the core of who they are and of what the project is to be,” Angelika explains. “Next, I do a lot of research, and through this research, and reading and thinking about the project, the core comes to life, both tangibly and non-tangibly. And then I write down the ‘story’ that reflects this core.” She pauses and reflects on this for a moment. “In that sense, I feel like more of a movie director than an interior arichtect; I write a type of script, and go in search of the right people for this particular project. Like actors for a movie, they have to have the right fit with the story.”
“In order to create the most magic, the design needs to be created in one single flow – which I try to hold on to as long as possible,” Angelika says. “Once I have created the ‘script’, I remain on top of it, like a lion, in order to ensure that it remains pure. For if you start fiddling with it, it loses its purity. There are so many potentially disrupting factors – such as contractors who have different ideas, or materials that are all of a sudden not available any more – that I really need the client to have faith in me, in my capacity to come up with a solution that is true to the core of what they want. Because I have no trouble at all with searching for cheaper solutions – just let me be the one to find them.”
‘I am more of a movie director than an interior architect; I write a script, and go in search of the people who have the right fit with the story’
Does this mean it is hard for Angelika to let go of a project once it has been completed? “I try to remain involved to the very last minute. It takes a lot of time and energy and is not very commercial, for it is not the quickest way to make money, but that’s not what I’m in this for. It means I do fewer projects, but I give them my all. In answer to your question; yes, I find it hard to let go once it’s done. The process is so intensive – with clients, constructors, suppliers, the people I work with – that I really miss it when it’s done. When I ‘re-visit’ a project, I always find more inspiration – in fact, I wish my clients would invite me to come by twice a year to do some tweaking. I would gladly spend those couple of hours to give them that something extra.”
Angelika’s background makes her uniquely suited to an international market: “My mother is German, my father was Dutch, I speak seven languages, have traveled around the world, lived in, among others, Brazil, Rome and Paris – and am deeply interested in other cultures, which I can easily mix and merge to create a special ambiance. I don’t see myself as ‘only’ an interior architect: I toss all my talents into one big mixing bowl, with as core ingredients: different cultures, graphic design, building supervision, experience in everything from cruise ships to exhibits to hotels to businesses to private homes – and a huge ‘library’ of knowledge in my head from which I can pick and choose the right ingredients to create the right recipe for the design. I am not interested in trends, I am interested in how I can make each individual project unique. That’s it in a nutshell.” She continues: “This also means that no two projects are the same, not because I don’t have a particular style of my own – you can find my style in my own home – but because I let myself be led completely by the ‘story’ that fits with my client or project. Nonetheless, people say that they can always recognize my signature, which they describe as expressing ‘experience’ and ‘feeling’, with a special role for lighting, tailor-made to the location and the client.”
Compact Design Offer
Angelika has also developed a compact design offer that allows her to share her talents with those who do not have much of a budget. “I don’t think it’s fair that this type of service should only be available to people or businesses with deep pockets. What I do is I sit down with my clients and talk with them about what they want to create. Then, over a period of about two days, I create a ‘story’ for them; I come up with ideas, color palettes, a mood board and sketches, and then hand it over to them, so that they can implement it, within the budget they have. Of course, if they decide they want to keep me involved, and feel they want to invest more, we can move on to a next phase. But that is up to them.” She grins: “You know me, I like to remain involved from the first moment of magic to the last drop of reality.”