Nick Ames meets Sara Khamis of Lacasa who never had any doubt that her future lay in building design.
From an extremely young age Sara Khamis had one major passion when it came to a career – getting the chance to design inspiring structures which take their inspiration from organic forms.
Born in Cairo, Egypt, she studied architecture at the city’s Ain Shams University to launch herself on the design and build ladder.
“I knew what I wanted to do from a very early age,” she says. “I have no doubt that is not the case for many people. But I was always looking at buildings, especially when I travelled. I would look at them closely when I was watching films, even in cartoons.
“I had this passion from such a young age, When I was around 13-years-old I saw this castle. It was full of such amazing details and I just knew I wanted to create something like that. I haven’t built a castle yet – but maybe I will someday.”
University instilled practical information into Khamis’ design skills but also served to fire her imagination.
She says: “I have become very influenced by organic forms and this has become very important in some of the work I am doing in Palestine. It is very different to Dubai, where I am based.
“There is obviously a huge amount of modern designs here and this is very inspiring. But the challenges faced in Palestine are different and there is the history and culture which is so important I try to use materials from nature there – organic materials.
“The locally-sourced stone provides a unique feature for the buildings and so enables them to become an integral part of the landscape.”
Sara Khamis says her period of study in Cairo gave her the practical knowledge to fulfil her dreams of creating inspiring buildings. She came to work at Lacasa after a friend who had previously worked at the time outlined its approach when it comes to design. “It’s a very comfortable place to work and we turn what the client envisages into reality.”