The winner of the InsideOut Home of the Year 2018 was revealed at a beautiful beachside cocktail party on May 1st, at the JA Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa, where design enthusiasts gathered to celebrate the beautiful abode and its creative homeowner, plus the stylish finalists.

Danish national Bettina Frimann Larsen was crowned the winner, whose family home in Mira, Dubai, showcased a cool Nordic aesthetic with stylish Art Deco touches, thoughtfully put together with a creative flair for upcycling and natural eye for design. “For me winning is a stamp of approval for the style that I have, it really boosts my confidence,” says Bettina, who lives with her husband Jacob Rikard Nielsen, their 12-year-old son Oliver, and their dog Azezah.

See inside Bettina's winning home here

An expert judging panel assessed the design credentials of each of the seven shortlisted homes, with every one displaying a different sense of style, ingenuity and creativity.

The judging panel comprised Pallavi Dean, design director of Pallavi Dean Interiors, Ellen Sohoel, the founder of XBD Collective, Neel Shukla, creative and managing director of Four Seasons Ramesh Gallery, Linda Dekkers, the stylist and blogger known as Live Loud Girl, Asif Siddiqui, director of operations at 2XL Furniture and Home Decor, and InsideOut editor Mairead Walsh.

Read more about our panel of expert judges here

“What impressed the judges about Bettina’s home was its cohesion and confident execution throughout,” says Mairead. “Her creative upcycling and cool Nordic aesthetic, while incorporating eclectic pieces, demonstrated a natural eye for design. Every aspect has been considered, right down to the curated collection of objects, as well as her own personal artwork.”

As the winner, Bettina’s stunning home was unveiled as the cover star of the May issue of InsideOut magazine, and she was presented with a bespoke trophy and a gift of Dh25,000 to spend at 2XL Furniture & Home Décor, the main sponsor of InsideOut Home of the Year 2018, in association with The Home.  

See how the event unfolded here:

During the event guests mingled with the judges and shortlist, and watched video tours of each of the seven homes, set against a stunning beachside backdrop, decorated with lounge furniture from 2XL Furniture & Home Décor and flowers from Genie Events.

The InsideOut Home of the Year is a unique initiative that was launched in 2014, which has generated a wealth of interest from both the magazine readership and the industry at large.

See the full Home of the Year 2018 shortlist here

The other six homes that made it to the final stages will be featured in InsideOut magazine or online later in the year. Reflecting the wonderful diversity of UAE residents, the shortlist included homeowners and renters from the Emirates, Germany, France, and South Africa. They were:

Alma and Ibrahim Jimoh showed a playful approach to decorating their kids’ rooms in Mudon, Dubai, with statement walls and pops of colour. The German couple worked on their villa for two years, with the end result boasting a wonderfully consistent palette inside and out.

The family home of Emirati couple Eman and Taha Bani Hashim is a true statement of individual style, with the couple building their dream home in Khalifa City, Abu Dhabi, from the ground up. The family designed their Beverley Hills style mansion themselves, and decorated it with a crisp palette inspired by Eman’s love for Ralph Lauren plus unique, custom-made pieces.

Jorg and Michele Fahr-Becker created a tranquil holiday-at-home ambience in their family villa in Arabian Ranches, Dubai, with structural changes that enhanced the view of a beautifully landscaped garden. Jorg, a pilot from South Africa, loved the freedom that the project give him to express his creative side.

Customisation was key for Pakistani national Humera Siddiqui, when she moved with her family to Dubailand one year ago. She gave classic furniture a contemporary uplift with new fabrics and paints, and designed a truly stunning library and beautiful garden for the family to enjoy. 

Kaltoum Dumonceau’s villa in The Meadows, Dubai, is bursting with colour and a bold mix of European style and Arabesque accents, drawing upon her French-Moroccan roots. She impressed the judges by showing how a rented home can carry distinct style and personality.

Emirati Nawal Farah added a conservatory extension to her family home in Golf Gardens, Abu Dhabi, infused with a comfortable inside-outside feel. She took design cues from Kelly Hoppen, creating a sophisticated scheme that’s high on comfort, with luxury furnishings and investment artwork.

Stay tuned to tour their fabulous homes and to discover the story behind each beautiful abode.

See photos from the Home of the Year 2018 event here 

Find out more about our Home of the Year initiative and explore previous winners here 

Video by Anas Thacharpaddikal

Lead photo by Aiza Castillo-Domingo