WHAT inspires you most about design?
- There seems to be a storyline evident in each KNA project—is this by design?
Always, there is a narrative element to our work. We're currently developing a fabric line for Robert Allen—a contemporary reinterpretation of classic 20th century design iconography—and I am hoping you will even see the storyline in that. The line is based on our vision of the perfect hotel, so you can bet we threw a few unexpected twists in there. The process has been fun, and the feedback amazing.
- Size? Or what you do with it?
[laughs]…Regardless of the project, we need to know the big picture first. Once you know the WHY of a project, the WHAT becomes much clearer. This approach holds true for any endeavor we take on, regardless of size or scope. It just works.
- KNA handles hospitality projects the world over—what is your idea of the dream vacation?
It would definitely start in Hong Kong. It's the perfect point of departure for all of Asia, and it's so energized, everything is moving lightning fast. We just opened an office there so I am truly fortunate to be able to mix business with pleasure.
- How about the dream project?
We're putting the finishing touches on the new Leela Palace in New Delhi, so I'd love to build an eco-friendly resort in the nearby Maldives. The people there are the friendliest, most-generous people I've ever encountered, and the Indian Ocean water is absolutely breathtaking—clear unlike anywhere else in the world. This falls into the dream vacation category also, doesn't it? Our work can be so exciting, I sometimes forget it's work at all.