DesignCurial speak to Martin Kemp - a leader in luxurious interior design - about working in the high-end market, international projects, and designing interiors for yachts and private jets.
As the founder of Martin Kemp Design (MKD), Martin Kemp knows a thing or two about producing luxury interiors for a range of markets – including super-prime residential, high-end retail, restaurant design, and also luxury travel. Describing themselves as a “highly creative design studio”, MKD is renowned for being a leader in style and originality.
One of the reasons for their success may be because instead of bringing a specific ‘style’ to their projects, MKD prefer to work with their client’s preferences in mind – whether that be a minimalist, classic design, or something more futuristic, or even highly decorative. With so many interesting projects – both past and present – under his belt, DesignCurial were fortunate enough to be able to interview Martin Kemp.
We asked this leader in design about his passion for luxury interiors, his company, designing for private jets and luxury yachts, and where we should expect to see MKD in the future:
How did Martin Kemp Design begin?
We began with the redesign of a private home six years ago. It was just myself initially, then the studio grew to 18 - as we are today. Along the way, we have worked on some of London’s most iconic developments, such as Clarges Mayfair and 77 Mayfair [in London], as well as many exclusive residences, jets and yachts across the globe. Grown was steady and reactive.
Did you always want to pursue design?
No, I wanted to be a marine biologist when I was younger; I am passionate about scuba diving and I dive as often as I can. However, design came naturally through my parents. My mother was particularly creative with her fashion and portrait painting, and both my father and sister developed careers in architecture and planning.
What inspires your designs, and what is your favourite part of a project?
Initially the architecture, though of course the client and their brief are paramount. From there we develop our own inspirations, preferring to be as original as we can be, which is what our clients have come to expect.
Every design stage has different appeal, though of course seeing the final product can’t be beaten! Having worked on projects often for three years or more, it’s always a great pleasure to see our clients beam with happiness and excitement when they move in.
Do you find working internationally difficult?
Not at all, we rise to the challenge with ease. Once teams and consultants are in place and an agreed timetable for delivery is confirmed, we ensure our work is executed to the same high standards we are renowned for. If anything it’s this extra pressure that makes these projects so successful.
The biggest challenge [however, of working in this way] is always delivering a project on time - there are so many consultants involved. We are not responsible for the timetable thankfully though!
Tell us about the private jet and super yacht projects?
[We had to create] an interior for a jet that met aviation safety standards - but also the brief from our client was a particularly difficult challenge. However, we delivered a timelessly chic cabin, which more than satisfied the owner.
Similar challenges - such as weight and ergonomics - are met with yachts. These challenges encompass timely delivery and working within the weight restriction needed to ensure the vessel performs to maximum efficiency and speed.
Are there any new projects that we should be excited about?
Clarges Mayfair is a project set for completion very soon; it has a very high profile location on Piccadilly opposite Green Park, and is a project we’ve been creating for the best part of five years!
Additionally, amongst many other exciting projects, we are building one of the finest chalets in The Alps, refitting a spectacular home on The Mall, executing a further private jet, and creating a vast subterranean home in China.