Talking the Rise of Turnkey Condo Living & Custom Furniture with Linda Zarifi
Join us for a peek inside the empowering world of Linda Zarifi, founder of Zarifi Design. With offices in Miami and Boston, Zarifi Design is a full-service boutique interior design firm for residential and hospitality projects. Along with her team and an established network of global artisans, Linda Zarifi creates timeless, sophisticated, and luxurious interiors to love. Recently Linda worked with the luxury condo building The Parker in Boston. A project that showcases a stunning example of the rising turnkey trend. And not just for the design of the building’s amenities and home interiors but also for a specialized custom furniture collection for the residences.
Read on and be inspired by Linda Zarifi and her beautiful designs for The Parker in this edition of Lh Empowered Women Empower.
Be Empowered by Linda Zarifi, Founder of Zarifi Design
Love Happens: As our name and the tagline of our publisher, KOKET, denotes, at Love Happens, we are firm believers that you cannot achieve any level of success without love. When did your love affair with design begin? How did it make you feel?
Linda Zarifi: My love affair with design started at an early age. My dad was a developer in Arizona, so when all the other kids were going to playgrounds, I was going to construction sites. I loved finding scraps of marble and different materials and getting a firsthand look at the true collaborative efforts to create a unique piece of the built environment. This kind of creation and creativity spoke to me from the very beginning.
Lh: Tell us about your career leading up to founding Zarifi Design.
Linda: I studied Architecture and Interior Design at the University of Texas at Austin. I remember reading about the Rockwell Group and seeing how transformative their designs were, and it became my dream to work for them. I interned for Kelly Wearstler one summer and found her approach to design fascinating, and then went on to work at Rockwell Group for five years. Being able to see how these two pioneers approach design was such an honor. I learned so much while training with the most creative talent — it was almost like getting a Master’s in design!
In 2011, I moved to Miami and realized there wasn’t much of an established design scene yet, so I saw an opportunity to break into the industry. I collaborated with Rockwell Group on the renovation of the Ritz Carlton in South Beach and led the interior redesign. I launched my career in interior design from there and started doing bespoke hospitality and residential projects.
Lh: Recently, you expanded your brand even further with a custom furniture line for a turnkey condo development; how did The Parker project come to be?
Linda: Every piece of The Parker’s design was something we considered carefully, from the materials that clad the lobby to the vase that was placed in the lounge to the handles on the kitchen cabinets. We wanted to offer bespoke furniture packages that were aligned not only with the look and feel of The Parker’s interiors but also with the lifestyle of bringing every convenience into the home. We did this by creating curated packages that offer all the bells and whistles of a high-end designer and making it accessible for all buyers at The Parker. This took away all the stress of going out and shopping, hiring a designer, waiting for installation, etc.
We launched The Parker’s furniture line at such an interesting time. It was the cusp of design, convenience, accessibility, and lifestyle merging. Home had become so much more prominent during COVID, so we wanted to embrace that by taking the labor out of the design process and giving residents the opportunity to enjoy their new home seamlessly. You turn your key and walk into a hospitality-driven experience where everything is ready for you.
Lh: Tell us about your experience creating the custom limited edition furniture collection for The Parker.
Linda: We curated every design detail of The Parker’s amenities and residences, so it felt natural to extend this to the most intimate elements of someone’s home. For example, we took the same warm-toned wood and linear gesture from the decorative screen in the lobby and carried it into the headboards. The overall design experience feels incredibly thoughtful and personalized.
Lh: Were there any moments during the project that stand out?
Linda: One of the most amazing moments was installing the first furniture prototypes. We designed everything so precisely and with so much attention to detail, so it all looked tailor-made exactly for the space. I took pride in the outcome and seeing that there is a way to maximize a person’s footprint by installing great design.
Lh: What advice would you give to someone looking to design a custom furniture line?
Linda: Don’t be afraid of trial and error. Spend the time getting prototypes made so you can practice before you do the real thing. Mistakes are our most valuable lessons in life. Practice is priceless.
Lh: Turnkey design is not a new concept, but designing a custom-branded furniture package to go with it is definitely more novel. What are your thoughts on the future of turnkey home design?
Linda: As city living increasingly shifts to condo living, and people continue to live globalized lifestyles jet-setting from one hotel to another, turnkey design will keep rising as a trend. People are prioritizing convenience and service. They want that five-star hospitality experience on a residential scale, and turnkey condos provide that.
Lh: What empowers you most?
Linda: Failure. I’ve had my fair share of setbacks in life, but those exact setbacks propelled me forward. Failure builds the most amount of resilience in a person as, like I mentioned, mistakes are the most valuable lessons.
Lh: Do you have any mottos or favorite quotes you like to live by?
Linda: Beauty is pain. The process of achieving beauty can and will be a labor of love, especially in interior design. When you’re creating a true work of art, it takes a journey to get there.
Lh: What is next for Linda Zarifi?
I ask myself that question every day — we’re always looking towards the future.
I’ve found a great niche that combines my two loves of hospitality and high-end residential design. It’s a sweet spot that speaks to who we are at Zarifi Design, and we’d like to continue working on projects that combine these elements while still taking on beautiful individual residential projects. Given the success of the furniture line at The Parker, I also hope to have more opportunities to curate specialty design objects and make them accessible.
Learn more about Linda Zarifi and Zarifi Design at zarifidesign.com and about The Parker at theparkerboston.com.
Feature Image Courtesy of The Parker
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