Highly regarded as the most innovative and inspirational Interior Design studio in London; here at Accouter we pride ourselves on creating ultra luxurious interiors for the most discerning clients in the world’s most exclusive residences.
Our Mayfair studio is home to a dedicated and aspiring team of creatives driven in encapsulating the world of interiors and deluxe design.
With skillful, innovative and unexpected thinking, the team deliver first class, ultra luxurious interiors with passion and vision developing all aspects of the interior’s architecture and furnishing specification.
Responding to your individual needs and believing in transparent design we consider the functionality and practicalities of your life to seamlessly deliver you a truly elegant and supreme scheme.
Working with some of the world’s leading Art Galleries we are often ask to source that special piece of Art or Sculpture.
Be it a Banksy, Rembrant or Dylan we can give you access to some of the best pieces and advice for making that major investment.
Accouter presents to you A. London; a specialist property marketing division devoted to delivering supreme interiors with maximum desirability.
With a collective 20 years in the property and design industries, our commercially minded team work alongside London and Surrey’s most influential residential Property Developers, Agents and Landlords creating fast, economical interiors for rental or sale.
We created Accouter as something to be proud of; the best of British creativity and talent, sourcing the finest design the world has to offer.
You may think that’s a bold statement to live up to but understanding that every detail matters from the brief we take, through to the supply chain & product we select, the teams we employ and, of course, how we communicate with our clients means that we are half way there.
After a month of high-end hobnobbing in London, it’s time to put those networking skills into action across the Channel, says Alec Watt…
First up – an interior designer on Dragons Den! Who’d of thought it? Our congratulations to Kelly Hoppen, who has has made a magnificent contribution to the industry.
To be honest we haven’t been watching Dragons Den since James Caan left, but we might take a look at the new series and see Kelly in action. I’m sure it will make great television and you have to respect who has built a brand solely on her name and reputation. Some might say it’s a very brave approach to build a business around one person, but Kelly has a great team behind her and, as we know, the most important part of any business is the people within it.
This month, it seems that most of the real estate world will be descending on Cannes. Our team are putting the final touches to our preparations for MIPIM – a key event for us as word of mouth is so vitally important. MIPIM provides a great platform to network with a good number of our clients who are like a mini army of “accouteretts”; making introductions, singing our praises, getting us onto the yachts or into the cocktail parties and generally helping us spread the good word in some very pleasant surroundings – what’s not to like?
We are pleased to note that Boris Johnson will be in attendance again this year, promoting the great city of London. We have sent word that if he wants a wiff waff re-match with us, then he should get some practice in. As Oscar Wilde once said; “To lose at wiff waff once is unfortunate but to lose twice is careless” or something like that…
We have also arranged a private dinner for one of the evenings in a secret location that provides us and our guests the chance to get away from the throng, enjoy some quality time and then, maybe once recharged, finish up with a cocktail or two at the Carlton – or with the celebrities at Baolti for the more adventurous.
Whilst we are sure that many attendees do have a brilliant time (along with a few regrets for the minority), MIPIM is a world class event with world class attendees, playing a crucial part in the world’s real estate industry and economy. As with any such event, however, it is of course what you make it.
One of our key projects this month has involved carrying out some detailed research for a very high profile luxury developer with a number of major schemes in London. With an impressive track record for attracting international buyers to their developments, they also appeal to a good chunk of owner-occupiers from the UK.
The stand out impression to hit us on visiting each location was the meticulous attention to detail – even when construction was still being carried out onsite and far from obvious to visitors. Great care was taken to ensure the approachto the development was looking its best and the greeting from the people in the marketing suites was like being welcomed to your favourite restaurant; polite, friendly, professional and knowledgable.
A real credit to the a top brand and a far cry from a previous experience of having to wait for the marketing consultant to finish her sausage roll before taking the time to acknowledge our presence (but that’s another story).
All in all we were able to provide senior management with some great feedback that any firm would be proud of, affirming the reason why this company has been a major worldwide success story this millennium.
The atmosphere earlier this month at a splendid lunch with a favourite clients of ours at – some might say – Mayfair’s finest private members club, went up a couple of notches when one half of a very famous British couple joined us, fresh back from a very successful few years in the Americas…
House rules say that we can’t reveal more, other than to say that a number of high end estate agencies have been busy trying to find them something in prime London recently with good commuter links to Paris.
They are also reported to have appointed an interior designer to help them make their chosen home their own. We think it’s a splendid idea…
Putting aside the, some may say, unfair image of interior designers being ladies of a certain age passing between the flower arranging course and art class, we are very encouraged by the amount of really talented people in London, many of whom have a great attitude and are excited about being part of the journey.
2013 has started with a real buzz – the calls into the offices and design studio have been coming in thick and fast with more than a new project enquiry every day. This is set against a background of many developers and estate agencies also reporting a strong beginning to the year. We attended the launch of Battersea Power Station earlier in the month and couldn’t believe the board showing each apartment with all the little red dots next to them indicating that virtually all that had been released had been reserved; it really was all very exciting and we were nearly tempted to buy one or two for investment but just about managed to restrain ourselves.
For most businesses, and in particular interior design, word of mouth is the most powerful marketing we have; we enjoy many good relationships with prime real estate people and many we consider as friends. From our experience, the “one hit wonder” guys who run around town looking to make a quick buck and don’t mind how they do it, never last; some hang around longer than others but in the end it’s your reputation that will stand the test of time. So to that end, a big chunk of our marketing spend and effort is around networking, attending events and encouraging recommendations.
When we are recommended by someone, quite often that person will then check out our website. Stella has the enviable task of constantly reviewing and updating our marketing so that it reflects our values and position in the market place, for the website, the images, layout and experience are all key to creating the right impression. When we first launched our website, we loved it and had some great feedback, but already, as we get involved in more high profile projects and clients, we are re-evolving our brand and website to reflect this.
The top event attended this month has to be the small gathering with, amongst others, the charming Boris Johnson, Bruce Ritchie and James Caan at Lance Formans’ wonderful Formans Fish Island Smoke House and Gallery right next to the Olympic Stadium. The evening started with a very civilised discussion about the success of the Government’s Start Up Loans Initiative (which James chairs) – a framework to help the Private Rental Sector meet the demands of Londoners who want to live and work in the city. The need for investment is in infrastructure, and in particular runways (a subject close to Boris’s heart), to help grow the economy and encourage and further the flourishing scene in and around the East of London.
Soon after, the evening took a completely different tack, however, and turned into a hotly contested game of wiff-waff, with the Mayor of London rolling up his sleeves, taking on (and beating) all challengers including Accouter, who, despite considerable effort, were no match for his wicked forehand smash…honest.
The month ended with a pitch for one of prime London’s major landmark schemes. We went in “all guns blazing” with extensive market research identifying the demographic of the likely resident; international, sophisticated and enjoying the finer things in life.
We introduced our designs with a very cool short film demonstrating our understanding of the target market and vision for the scheme, with detailed layouts of the furnishing schemes in each residence to show how people can live in and use the space. We also went through examples of the fabrics and finishes we have put together to help them visualize, feel and understand how the scheme is put together. At each pitch, the aim is not just to say it but to demonstrate it.
We did however forget to mention a tricky little situation when we first visited the scheme – we picked a day when the lift was only going up (unbeknown to us at the time) which meant a considerable amount of time wandering round the building desperately looking for some kind of escape route, making us late for our meeting with the nice people at Prime Resi.
Mayfair-based investment firm Hamilton Bradshaw Real Estate (HBRE) has stepped in as financial and strategic backers to Accouter Design, a luxury interior design company with an all-star management team led by Managing Director Alec Watt. Alec is accompanied by fellow founders Stella Savage and Marc Horn, both well known in the London residential interior design scene. The joint venture with HBRE is to establish and scale up Accouter Design, an international interior design business focusing on high end luxury residential interiors.
Faisal Butt, Managing Partner and fellow investor at HBRE, led the deal and reconfirms his decision to invest in Accouter;”The business has been operational for 3 months and has turned over in excess of £500,000, an impressive achievement for a business still in its infancy, firmly reinforcing our mantra of partnering with “best-in-class” real estate entrepreneurs and high calibre management teams”
Butt projects that with the support of HBRE, the business will grow revenue to £10 million within five years, by targeting both the multi-unit private rented sector (PRS) market and more bespoke high end projects for specific private clients. By leveraging the PE firm’s exclusive network, the team has already been able to get onto the bidding table for a number of landmark residential schemes, including one with over 1,500 new build apartments in London.
The Founders are the former management team of an award winning furnishing and luxury interior design company. With a collective 20 years of experience in the industry, Alec and his team are in the privileged position of being one of the only players in the sector backed by a private equity house, giving them the firepower, profile, and network to grow market share in 2013 and onwards.
James Caan, Entrepreneur, investor and Chairman of Hamilton Bradshaw Real Estate said;”Our partnership with Alec Watt and fellow founders reflects our focus on backing best-in-class management teams in key growth sectors in the real estate industry. This is part of our long-term plan to build a significant real estate platform by backing tomorrow’s movers and shakers.”
Accouter’s founding Managing Director, Alec Watt shares his thoughts on the joint venture:”Partnering with James and the HBRE platform is the beginning of a new and exciting stage for us. The know-how and capital provided by our new partners will give us a superior platform from which to grow.
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If your interested in being part of Accouter’s journey we’d love to hear from you. We are always looking for talented likeminded people in Design, Sales, Finance & Operations and your enquiry will always be treated in the strictest confidence.
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