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    Nickolas Gurtler brings 1970s Italian glamour to Youth Lab clinic in Perth

    Australian designer Nickolas Gurtler has drawn from the nightclubs of 1970s Milan and Florence to create the interior for a cosmetic clinic in Perth, Australia.

    It is the third interior that Gurtler has created for Youth Lab, a clinic that offers a range of non-surgical cosmetic treatments that include anti-ageing procedures, hair removal and skin rejuvenation.
    The waiting area features a mirror wall, gold lights and a green silk carpetLocated in Joondalup, Youth Lab 3.0 is the brand’s most experimental space so far.
    While the two other locations – in Claremont and West Perth – occupy heritage buildings, this one is set inside a commercial block from the 1990s. This meant Gurtler could be more daring in his approach.
    A Dina Broadhurst artwork provides a focal pointWhile the design was partly informed by the brand’s minimalist identity, it also features playful details that include mirror walls and a grand geometric reception desk.

    “There were some really outrageous and glamorous concepts that I really responded to and had filed away for the right project,” said Gurtler.
    “When Youth Lab approached us again for their third clinic, I knew that this was the right time to bring them to life.”
    The reception desk is formed of Arabescato marble and Venetian plasterThe starting point was the palette of forms and materials that Gurtler has worked with previously for the brand, which includes decorative marble, plush velvet and metal cabinetry.
    While the Claremont space that Gurtler designed for the brand has a New York loft vibe, here these elements are paired with shades of olive green and gold to create a more retro Italian feel.
    “This language is a kind of style guide for us on each project,” said Gurtler.
    “Common elements such as mixed metals, monolithic forms, plush textures and rich colour are used in each of the clinics, but we translate these elements completely differently each time.”
    The colour palette centres around olive green and goldArabescato marble is combined with Venetian plaster and polished aluminium to create the cuboidal forms of the reception desk, which sits beneath a custom glass and brass lighting pendant by designer Lost Profile Studio.
    A large gridded mirror installation provides the backdrop to a waiting area furnished with a green silk carpet, a blocky marble coffee table and sculptural white armchairs.
    A sculpture by American potter Jonathan Adler sits in front of a second mirror wallRows of golden-hued ceiling lights are reflected in the mirrors, doubling their visual impact, and an artwork by Dina Broadhurst creates another focal point.
    As customers are led through for treatment, they also encounter a second mirror wall, a ceramic by American potter Jonathan Adler, custom wall lights and brass door numbers.
    Custom lighting scones embellish the wallsYouth Lab 3.0 was longlisted for Dezeen Awards 2022 in the leisure and wellness interior category, along another of Gurtler’s designs, the Cole Hair Studio.
    The designer hopes the space offers “an immersive and sensorial experience which is as much invigorating as it is calming”.
    “The Youth Lab experience is a luxury and the interior reflects that,” he added.
    The photography is by Timothy Kaye.

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    Brave New Eco applies cosy colours and materials to Melbourne “forever home”

    Timber, terracotta and rich jewel tones feature throughout this home in Melbourne that Australian studio Brave New Eco has designed for a family of five.

    Occupied by a couple and their three teenage children, West Bend House sits on a leafy plot overlooking the greenery-lined banks of Melbourne’s Merri Creek.
    The building itself was designed by local studio MRTN Architects but Brave New Eco was brought on board to do the interiors for the “forever home”, having already worked with the studio twice before on other projects.
    West Bend House is a Melbourne residence by Brave New Eco”The owners of the house were well known to us,” Brave New Eco explained.
    “They had been clients in the early days of the studio, so the mutual trust and respect levels were high, allowing us to create a highly responsive and intimately resolved outcome that the dynamic family will inhabit for many years to come,” the studio added.

    “Our challenge was to configure the interior elements so that each space feels settled and cohesive, with a sense of discovery to the distinct spaces as you move through the home.”
    A khaki-green sofa contrasts the blue carpet in the living roomCustom wooden cabinetry was installed in the home’s galley kitchen and kept handleless so that it “reads like a piece of furniture”, according to Brave New Eco.
    A wooden screen was also added behind the sink area to keep the washing-up out of view.
    Custom timber shelving was created for the studySlender green tiles that pick up on the home’s verdant surroundings line the island counter, as well as a strip of wall behind the stove.
    Above, a handy timber shelf for storing cooking paraphernalia is fronted with sliding brass-mesh screens.
    To the side of the kitchen lies an expansive picture window, beneath which the studio built a “bedroom repatriation drawer” where family members can store any belongings that stray from their sleeping quarters.
    The principal bedroom was rendered calming shades of greyThe colour green pops up again in the home’s laundry room, where the cupboards are coated with emerald-coloured Marmoleum.
    An L-shaped khaki-green sofa dominates one corner of the living room, contrasting with the plush teal carpet.

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    At the centre of the home’s ground floor is a sunken courtyard with a study housed on the other side. This was finished with full-height timber bookshelves, a lengthy desk and a pinboard panel where the owners can tack up anything from reminders to artwork by the kids.
    The floor, like much of the rest of the home, was inlaid with red bricks.
    Sapphire-coloured tiles clad the main bedroom’s ensuiteSoothing grey shades were applied in the principal bedroom upstairs, which adjoins a moody ensuite bathroom almost entirely clad in sapphire-blue tiles.
    Two types of terracotta tile – one plain, one grooved – were used to create textured walls in the bathroom shared by the owners’ daughters.
    Terracotta tiling creates textural interest in the daughters’ bathroomWest Bend House is one of five projects shortlisted in the house interior category of this year’s Dezeen Awards.
    It will go up against residences such as Twentieth by Wood + Dangaran, which is arranged around a decades-old olive tree, and Barwon Heads House by Adam Kane Architects, which adjoins a barn-like extension.
    The photography is by Peter Bennetts.

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    Alexander & Co maintains residential feel inside self-designed Sydney office

    Australian architecture practice Alexander & Co has created its own office inside a Victorian-era property in Sydney.

    Situated a stone’s throw from Bondi Beach, Alexander House acts as a “design laboratory” where Alexander & Co’s team can meet, collaborate and find space to work independently.
    Alexander & Co’s self-designed office has a double-height kitchenThe homely office occupies a semi-detached property that dates back to the Victorian period. Though the practice decided to preserve the building’s original facade, its interior was completely remodelled to function as a modern workspace.
    Staff enter the office via a ground-level vestibule with rammed-earth walls before climbing a flight of stairs to reach the open-plan living and dining area on the first floor.
    A “cafe-style” area provides seating for staffOne half of the space is dressed with an angular olive-green sofa, a glossy coffee table and a puffy grape-coloured armchair.

    The other half of the room is occupied by a double-height kitchen. At its centre is a chunky breakfast island crafted from pink-hued concrete, around which the team can congregate for meals, client catch-ups or company events.
    Construction waste was used to make furnishings in the courtyardAdditional seating is provided in a “cafe-style” area at the edge of the room, which features a custom leather seating banquette, cane chairs and a couple of tables.
    Concertina glass doors at the rear of the kitchen open up onto a courtyard. This houses a pool and an ice bath alongside a collection of mottled stools and side tables that were custom-made out of waste generated from the building’s renovation.
    A cosy library can be found on the building’s mezzanine level”Beauty can be found in the irregularities and developing patinas that have resulted from incorporating handmade and natural materials throughout our new space,” explained the practice.
    “Blemishes, cracks and connections – they are all magic and inform our storytelling through scale and detail.”

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    Directly above the ground floor is a generous mezzanine level that accommodates a cosy library space where Alexander & Co can host more intimate meetings.
    The room’s bookshelves and kidney-shaped table are crafted from walnut wood, while chocolatey leather curtains are suspended in front of the doorway.
    Visiting team members from other offices can stay over in the bedroom suiteThe narrower end of the mezzanine was turned into a quiet work area for up to five people, finished with a thickset concrete ledge for laptops.
    The upper floor of the building was made into a bright loft-esque space. Here there’s an events room and a bedroom suite, where visiting team members from other offices can stay.
    Down in the basement is the practice’s materials libraryTraditional workstations can be found down in the basement along with Alexander & Co’s materials library.
    From this level of the building, you can also access the landscaped back garden, which will be used during the summer for alfresco gatherings.
    A concrete staircase runs through all four levels of the buildingAll four levels of the building are connected by a concrete staircase with brass balustrading and a dramatic seven-metre-long pendant light dangling through its central void.
    Alexander House is one of six projects shortlisted in the small workspace interior category of this year’s Dezeen Awards.
    Others in the running include F.Forest Office by Atelier Boter, which sits within a glass-fronted building in a Tawainese fishing village, and Samsen Atelier by Note Design Studio, which also serves as a wine bar.
    The photography is by Anson Smart.

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    Weathered-steel staircase wraps plant-filled atrium at Midtown Workplace

    Weathered-steel balconies with cascading plants wrap the skylit atrium at the centre of this office in Brisbane, refurbished by Australian studio Cox Architecture.

    Named Midtown Workplace, the office occupies the top nine floors of a development that has been created by merging two separate towers in the Australian capital into a single building.
    The project has been shortlisted in the large workspace interior category of Dezeen Awards 2022.
    Cox Architecture has refurbished the Midtown Workplace in BrisbaneUsing the idea of connectivity between the two towers as a starting point, Cox Architecture created a stepped concrete auditorium at the base of the office called “The Pit”, with bridge links above based on the idea of an internal high street.
    “The tower is a story of two halves, two existing towers connected as one, old structures connected with new,” said the studio.

    It features an atrium with cascading plants”Our approach to the workplace celebrated this, with the void and bridge links positioned as the connecting piece between two existing towers,” it continued.
    At either side of Midtown Workplace’s central, skylit atrium, the cores of the existing towers have been used to house circulation and smaller meeting rooms, surrounded by areas of flexible workspace.
    A stepped concrete auditorium sits at the baseBanks of desks and booths are complemented by more informal seating areas at different points along the office’s “high street”, such as benches installed alongside planters and stools overlooking the atrium.
    “The new workplace explores an alternative to standard workspaces, creating a diverse and blended model that is supported by a high proportion of hackable, collaborative areas,” said Cox Architecture.

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    “Thirty per cent of the primary work points are moveable, affording teams complete autonomy and control over their workspace,” it continued.
    In The Pit, curved concrete amphitheatre-style seating dotted with planters faces a presentation space with views of the city as its backdrop. It is overlooked by all of the atrium’s balconies, creating a “magnet for cultural exchange.”
    Cox Architecture used a material palette with earthy tonesMidtown Workplace’s material palette adopts earthy tones drawn from the exposed concrete and orangey-brown weathered steel.
    The bare concrete is complemented by exposed metalwork and services across the office ceilings.
    The ceilings have exposed metalwork and servicesOther projects that have been shortlisted in the large workspace interior category of Dezeen Awards 2022 include the Design District Bureau Club in London by Roz Barr Architects, and the Dyson Global HQ in Singapore by M Moser Associates.
    Elsewhere, Cox Architecture is currently developing an airport in Sydney with Zaha Hadid Architects and recently completed The National Maritime Museum of China, which features a cluster of hull-like roofs.

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    Material and spatial contrasts define Barwon Heads House by Adam Kane Architects

    Australian studio Adam Kane Architects has renovated a cottage on a quiet coastal street in Barwon Heads and connected it to a barn-like extension by a glazed link.

    Named Barwon Heads House, the project was designed by Melbourne studio Adam Kane Architects as a contemporary dwelling that embodied a “relaxed, coastal lifestyle”.
    Adam Kane Architects extended and renovated a cottage in Barwon HeadsPrior to Adam Kane Architects’ renovation and extension, the neglected weatherboarded cottage was known locally as “the dump”.
    Its transformation led it to be shortlisted house interior of the year in the Dezeen Awards 2022 and win the public vote for the same category.
    Barwon Heads House is clad in woodAdopting a minimal palette of monochrome contrasts, the studio painted the existing cottage’s exterior entirely black, pairing it with a lighter extension clad in silvery-grey weathered wooden planks.

    Beneath steeply pitched black metal roofs, this play of contrasts continues to the interiors, creating a spatial journey of “compression and release” that begins in the more compartmentalised cottage containing three bedrooms and a bathroom.
    Contrasting colours and materials feature throughoutMoving through the existing cottage into the small glazed link and a dark corridor, Barwon Heads House’s extension opens up into a large living and dining space, overlooked by the main bedroom on a mezzanine above.
    Full-height windows look out to Barwon Heads House’s garden to the north, while a narrow clerestory-level window opposite draws in light above its kitchen.

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    “Access to the extension is via an enclosed corridor, lined with black mottled joinery panels on walls and ceilings, and is used to conceal doorways into the rumpus, laundry and storage areas,” said Adam Kane Architects.
    “The ‘journey’ through this dark corridor with a lower ceiling creates a sense of compression before a sense of release when walking towards the living room, where the gable opens up into the main space,” it continued.
    The extension has a deliberately simple finishExisting features were retained in the cottage, while the extension has a deliberately simple interior finished with oak panelling and exposed concrete. Slabs of travertine marble are used as countertops, coffee tables and a large dining table.
    “Heritage features are maintained through the use of the original lining board ceilings, as well as period skirting and architraves, which fit perfectly with the renewed tones,” said the studio.
    “The timber lining helps blur the threshold between inside and out, delineating zones, making spaces feel more generous and contributing to the relaxed feel of the home.”
    It is designed as a spatial journey of “compression and release”Adam Kane Architects was founded in 2015, and its previous projects include a bridal boutique in Melbourne with minimal finishes of concrete and marble.
    Alongside Barwon Heads House, other projects shortlisted in the house interior category of Dezeen Awards 2022 include a home in Melbourne with a palette of “organic” materials by Brave New Eco and the renovation of a 120-year-old townhouse in Kyoto by Td-Atelier and Endo Shojiro Design.
    The photography is by Timothy Kaye.

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    Flack Studio designs Ace Hotel Sydney as a “deep homage” to Australia

    References to the landscape and industrial heritage of Australia are woven into the Ace Hotel’s new outpost in Sydney, with interiors designed by local practice Flack Studio.

    Situated in the city’s historic Tyne House factory in Surry Hills, the 257-room Ace Hotel Sydney marks the American hotel group’s first location in the southern hemisphere.
    Ace Hotel Sydney houses a lobby, bar and lounge on the ground floorOn the ground floor, public spaces include a lobby, bar and lounge, a neighbourhood restaurant and a day-to-night cafe, while the building’s top floor is occupied by a rooftop restaurant designed by Australian interiors studio Fiona Lynch Office.
    Describing the project as a “deep homage” to Australia, Flack Studio said the interior draws on the warm neutural tones of the country’s desert landscapes and the paintings of Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira.
    The sunken lounge features brown leather sofasThe hotel has sandstone feature walls on the ground floor, a red marble staircase that stretches from the lobby to the first floor and terracotta-coloured tiles in the guest bathrooms.

    A sunken lounge on the ground floor is rendered in shades of caramel and burnt orange – reminiscent of the easygoing design favoured in Australia’s suburbs in the 1970s – while abundant planting throughout the hotel recalls the country’s lush rainforests.
    A red marble staircase leads up to the first floorFlack Studio also took cues from the work of Australian architect Robin Boyd, who proposed a functionalist and regionally grounded approach to architecture using simple forms and local materials.
    In the Ace Hotel Sydney, this can be seen in the off-form concrete walls, locally sourced timber and aged brass that reflect the utilitarian history of the building and the neighbourhood.
    Guest rooms are designed to feel cosy and residentialThe hotel’s 18-storey brick building was originally erected in 1916 to house the factory and distribution centre of chemist chain Washington H. Soul Pattinson.
    It also sits on the site where one of Australia’s oldest ceramic kilns was discovered, used by potter Jonathan Leak to produce domestic pottery as early as the 1820s.

    Luchetti Krelle creates eclectic bar Jane inside former butcher shop

    Ace Hotel Sydney’s wayfinding and signage were created by graphic design practice Studio Ongarato, incorporating elements of 70s modular design alongside bold geometric forms and textured materials.
    A sense of craftsmanship is conveyed through glazed ceramic room signage and hand-painted details on the entry signs.
    They feature custom lighting, furniture and fixturesThe hotel’s guest rooms feature custom lighting, furniture and fixtures and are designed to feel cosy and residential. Each room features a Rega turntable and a vinyl collection put together by Melbourne-based record label Efficient Space.
    Other highlights include an art collection curated by Flack Studio that showcases the works of contemporary Australian artists and a minibar stocked with goods from local producers.
    In the coming months, the hotel is also set to launch a residency programme spotlighting First Nations artists.
    Terracotta-coloured tiles line the walls in the guest bathroomsAce Hotel was founded in Seattle in 1999 and now has locations in cities including Los Angeles, New Orleans and Kyoto.
    Last August, the hotel chain opened its Brooklyn outpost, which features art in every room and a public gallery in its lobby that houses rotating exhibitions. Ace Hotel’s next location in Toronto is due to open in 2022.
    The photography is by Anson Smart and Nikki To.

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    Luchetti Krelle creates eclectic bar Jane inside former butcher shop

    Seventies decor, French bistros and indigenous flowers are some of the references design studio Luchetti Krelle has mixed inside this bar in Sydney, Australia, which occupies a converted butcher.

    Serving local wines and small plates, Jane is meant to be the more casual counterpart to Arthur – a nearby restaurant offering only five-course tasting menus.
    The bar retains the butcher’s original facadeBoth venues are run by chef Tristan Rosier and are named after his late grandparents.
    The building now housing Jane originally served as a butcher but was subsequently reincarnated as various eateries, which made it in desperate need of a revamp, according to Luchetti Krelle.
    A cosy group seating area was created by the entranceThe studio made some minor tweaks to the building’s tiled facade, restoring the brass framework and replacing its tinted windows and door panes with clear glass to allow passersby to look inside.

    A section of the butcher’s original gold-leaf signage was also carefully preserved.
    The seating area features a marble table and vintage chandelierThe interior’s 70-square-metre footprint only allowed Luchetti Krelle to make minimal structural alterations.
    A cosy dining area fit for eight guests was created beside the entrance, featuring a curved seating booth and a Rosso Levanto marble table with a built-in Lazy Susan. Overhead dangles a vintage chandelier, its ornate design reflected in the mirror-clad walls.
    Natural red fibres were sprayed across the ceilingA banquette runs the length of the bar on the right-hand side, its backrest upholstered in caramel-coloured corduroy as a subtle tribute to the 70s-style interiors found in the former home of Rosier’s grandparents.
    The banquette is accompanied by a series of bespoke wooden tables with slanted corners so that even when the bar is busy and guests are in closer proximity, they can’t bump into any sharp corners.

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    On the opposite side of the room is a brass-edged drinks bar finished with a Carrara marble countertop.
    High stools upholstered in butter-yellow leather stand in front of the bar, framed by a tiled floral splashback that’s meant to be loosely reminiscent of a Parisian bistro floor.
    A corduroy banquette nods to the 70sPrior to Luchetti Krelle’s intervention, the interior featured a “cold” black-and-white paint scheme. So the studio was keen to introduce some bolder colours – particularly those synonymous with the Australian bush.
    The existing concrete floor was coated in eucalyptus-green paint while the ceiling was finished with a natural red fibre that’s similar in hue to the indigenous Waratah flower.
    Just beneath the ceiling is a sequence of custom shelves, just high enough to fit a typical wine bottle.
    Brass ribboning runs around the base and countertop of the barCorduroy seating and Rosso Levanto tables were installed in Jane’s narrower rear dining room to create an aesthetic connection to the rest of the bar.
    From here, diners can access the bar’s private courtyard and the toilets, which take over the butcher’s former salting room.
    A new skylight brings light to the windowless dining area at the rearThis space was previously accessed via a short flight of steps. But the floor was raised to meet the level of the front room and further enhance the sense of continuity.
    A new skylight and glazed panel in the back door help illuminate the space, while a false ceiling was knocked through to make the walls appear taller.
    This room was also fitted with corduroy-lined furnitureLuchetti Krelle was established in 2008 and is led by Rachel Luchetti and Stuart Krell.
    Jane joins a multitude of bars and restaurants in Sydney, which is known for its vibrant dining scene.
    Other examples include moody gin bar Four Pillars Laboratory and Glorietta, an airy Italian restaurant decked out with timber and rattan furnishings.
    The photography is by Anson Smart.

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    YSG designs playful Sydney penthouse for empty nesters

    Australian studio YSG has added quirky fixtures and furnishings to this penthouse in Sydney’s Darlinghurst neighbourhood to suit the owners’ new post-lockdown design tastes.

    Drawing on references from tiled Spanish tapas bars to the colour palette of surrealist artworks, YSG gutted the apartment’s formerly “sober” interior to make way for a bolder fit-out.
    A fluffy armchair decorates the lounge of the Dream Weaver penthouseThe owners’ newfound freedom as empty nesters, alongside the lifestyle changes brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, played a key part in their wish for more aesthetically striking living quarters, according to YSG.
    “The past year of being sequestered at home amplified their desire for individual expression and more colourful injections regarding final furnishing selections,” the studio explained.
    “As consummate entertainers, they also requested conversational custom pieces.”

    Slabs of blue lapis lazuli stone clad the kitchen prep counterThe living room is now dressed with thick pile rugs, purple patchwork sofas and a shaggy pink armchair.
    A zingy pop of colour is provided by a trio of Murano glass floor lamps with contrasting transparent and metallic gold stripes. Nearby, a sliding door was inset with a matching amber-tinted porthole.
    Lapis lazuli is also incorporated into the custom drinks trolleyAlmost-black cabinetry was fitted in the adjacent kitchen alongside a backlit steel-framed shelf, which YSG said helps to display the owners’ tableware with “museum-like finesse”.
    The space is anchored by a blocky prep counter clad in purposely mismatched lapis lazuli stone slabs. A sculptural white breakfast bar is fitted with a rotating granite platter, on which the owners can present cheese and canapes when guests are over.
    A plum-red bed centres the principal bedroomJust beyond the kitchen is a dining area complete with a wooden table that was made bespoke by YSG and local industrial designer Adam Goodrum.
    There’s also a custom drinks trolley that features a worktop and handles made from the same blue lapis lazuli stone that covers the prep counter.
    At the back of the space is a wall overlaid with glossy off-white Moroccan tiles that reflect light around the room.

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    A similar medley of materials and colours can be found in the principal bedroom, which was extended out onto the penthouse’s terrace to make space for a study nook and walk-in wardrobe.
    At the heart of the room is a bespoke wood-veneer bed frame stained in plum red and topped with a Calacatta Viola marble headboard. Berry-hued pendant lights are suspended at different heights directly overhead.
    The adjoining en-suite bathroom features an onyx stone surroundIn the ensuite bathroom, the studio installed a panel of veiny onyx that winds its way around the shower cubicle and beneath a row of mirrored vanity cabinets, at which point it turns into a ledge with two integrated sinks.
    Similar stone fixtures were created in the guest bathroom and the moodier main bathroom, which is entirely clad in deep indigo tiles.
    Indigo tiles create a moodier feel in the family bathroomAround the terrace, YSG added a number of large potted plants and succulents to keep the outdoor area out of sight from neighbouring properties.
    The space is dressed with blue furnishings that create a visual link to the waters of Rushcutter Bay, which can be seen in the distance.
    Tall plants provide privacy to the penthouse’s terraceYSG was established in 2020 and is led by designer Yasmine Saleh Ghoniem.
    The studio has completed a number of projects in its hometown of Sydney, including a family house with tactile interiors and a moody gin bar featuring black walls and juniper berry-blue furnishings.
    The photography is by Prue Ruscoe.
    Project credits:
    Design: YSGStyling: Felicity NgBuilding: Promena Projects

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