sundowners at john jacob’s ‘the dunrobin’ apartment in cape town

04.07 John Jacob, John Jacob Interiors, Dunrobin, Cape Town, South Africa (by Denzil Jacobs)

John Jacob Zwiegelaar launched John Jacob Interiors in Cape Town in 2005. At 36, he has since made his name as a designer of unmistakable, highly bespoke, stylish interiors characterized by their attention to detail. To date he has clients in South Africa, the US and Europe, and his work includes not just the interiors of domestic and commercial projects, but private planes and a yacht and he’s coordinated new fabric ranges for a lifestyle brand called Studio H. Highlights of his portfolio include work with Gulfstream in the US to co-ordinate the design of the interiors of privately commissioned aircraft as well as the style of their external livery. He redecorated the guest accommodation at 18th-century Vergelegen, the Cape’s most historic Cape Dutch homestead, sourcing period antiques and art, and commissioning fixtures and fittings from celebrated local craftsmen. At the beginning of 2012, as creative director of Studio H, the new lifestyle brand of South African fabric house Hertex Fabrics, he launched a series of new fabric collections, and future plans will extend the brand to include a range of furniture and paint for domestic interiors. He designing the profile for, and interiors of, Luminance a bespoke department store in Johannesburg that will feature international luxury fashion brands. His work is featured prominently in Andrew Martin’s decorating annual (2010), and he stars in the book Style Icons, Top South African Designers and their Interiors (2011), alongside 15 of South Africa’s most prominent interior designers. John oversees the entire design process from architectural concept to the decoration of the interiors, custom furniture design and the treatment of the garden. If a project requires it, furniture and decorative accessories are sourced further afield – in the United Kingdom, France or wherever else is appropriate.

A few weeks ago, I was invited by John for sundowners at his Dunrobin apartment in Cape Town, which was featured on the top South African luxury and travel magazine televise show, Top Billing as well as the cover of Condé Nast‘s House & Garden Magazine. To say the least, the space was breathtakingly put together by this interior design genius. His use of shapes, colour and, my favourite part, texture was inspiring. It’s not a large space at all, but it still holds a sense of grandeur. Click here to see the feature on SABC3’s Top Billing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3R3rs3CVv0.

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