Design Cafe: Creating Designer Home Interiors Inspired by You

Shezaan Bhojani , Co- Founders, Gita Ramanan , Co- Founders

Shezaan Bhojani , Co- Founders

Gita Ramanan , Co- Founders

From the Flintstone’s stone house to one that is decorated highly with personalized furnishing & fixtures, interior designing has come a long way. Needless to say, our tastes have undergone a sea change and today we want a house that reflects our personality and mood. Few years ago, getting the exact replica of our dream house in reality was a day dream till technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) came into being. With time, interior designing software like SketchUp, Autodesk and Sweet Home 3D among others will become obsolete, and AI, AR and VR will take over the industry. While AI enables you to plan your house interiors within minutes and still have an option to change it multiple times till you are satisfied with the color combination, placement of furniture & household items, and others, VR and AR gives you a hands-on experience of the real feel of your dream home, even before spending a dime.

However, not many interior designing companies leverage these cutting-edge technologies to deliver what their customers want, and hence are on the verge of extinction. But not Design Café (DC) who not only uses these cutting-edge technologies as its magical wand, but leverages other technologies heavily in all aspects of delivery to keep things transparent and error-free, for its clients and employees as well. Catering to home owners whose interior budget spans from Rs.7 lakh and above, DC understands their plight of time constraint and hence acts as a one-stop-destination for all your interior needs. At DC you can have your home design customised in days and once your design is ready the team at DC also builds and helps you bring your dream home to life. DC installs everything from wall papers, texture paints, modular kitchen, wardrobe, beds, side-tables, furnishing to false ceiling amongst others – everything turn-key and with a warranty, which is quite unheard of in the interior design realm.

Designs Inspired by You, For You
If you avail DC’s services, there is no chance that your ideas, thoughts and perspectives will be left unheard. DC’s designers follow a stringent client-centric approach starting from design to delivery, which reflects every bit of you. Hence their first approach is to comprehend not just what clients want, but also to understand their personality trait, tastes, behavior, likes & dislikes, and others. Based on these facts, the design is prepared using high-end technologies, and clients have the power to make design changes multiple times till they feel it mirrors their idea. Mind you, there is no fee charged for designing (basically design service is free of cost when you build and install with DC), even if it’s revised several times. Once the design is approved, DC creates a 3D model of the interiors leveraging AR &VR to give a hands-on feel to the customers. And its AI-powered kitchen design tool (available at their experience centre) further empowers clients to
even design their own kitchen with customized dimensions to get
instantaneous budget and multiple options with various themes and styles, with in minutes.

DC installs everything from wall papers, texture paints, modular kitchen, wardrobe, beds, side-tables, furnishing to false ceiling amongst others – everything turn-key and with a warranty, which is quite unheard of in the interior design realm Magically, every bit of the factory activity is not just monitored by machines, but is controlled by technology

Once the company receives client’s approval, the design goes to DC’s factory for production. Magically, every bit of the factory activity is not just monitored by machines, but is controlled by technology. Starting from measurement to cutting and the number of screws and holes for the furniture, everything is decided by computer, which leaves no scope for human intervention and error. Using white glove services, each part of the furniture is barcoded for future purpose. Even assembling furniture is done using these barcodes, hence seamless delivery.

Following a 51-point quality check, DC ensures that everything is picture perfect, starting from sourcing raw materials to installations and delivery. On the other hand, custom software helps project managers track project progress and quality on real-time. Each project manager has a certain guidelines on how to check finishing of the product. As everything is machine-made, it gives the output and the project managers check the barcode to ensure that each piece is perfect. Clients too have the privilege to track work progress real time online on DC’s website. No wonder, being confident about the quality, the entire house comes with a warranty which is unprecedented in home interiors segment and varies from one year to lifetime in accordance with the products. “Our customers can also avail our service packages for their installed homes and savor a stress-free life in a DC home.We are just a phone call away,” assures DC’s co-founders Shezaan Bhojani&Gita Ramanan.

Leveraging these out-of-the-box methodologies, DC has created exceptional interiors for numerous clients. Just like it did for a busy young Bangalore couple, Vishal &Palak, and their 16-year old kid who is a budding footballer and Lionel Messi’s fan.Post signing up with DC, Vishal &Palak met DC design alchemist at its Bangalore studio where their specific needs were discussed, and seven days later, they received a detailed design presentation outlining each space of their designer home, custom designed for them. While the master bedroom had a modern theme,the son's bedroom was designed around football, while the living, dining and kitchen were designed around a contemporary style. “Space was made for each of their
personalities, like a large family photo wall in the living, to the blue sofa reflecting the vibrant personality of this family,” asserts Gita. Once client visualized their home in 3D and finalized the color options based on their themes & materials, it moved to production. DC handled every part of the home installation – starting from making furniture at its own factory, custom built to exacting standards, flooring replaced in certain areas, electrical and false ceiling work, lights, curtains, and others were co-ordinated, procured and installed by team DC. “A project manager was always at hand to ensure quality and in 90 days, their dream home was handed over,” explains Shezaan.

Choosing the Yellow Brick Road
Came into existence in 2012 under the aegis of an award-winning architect & designer couple– Gita &Shezaan, who together bring more than two decades of national and international design experience to the table, DC has come a long way from where it began. Headquartered in Bangalore, the company took no time to grow into a couple more centers across the city, and today, the next big milestone is its Mumbai expansion. The next five years will see its establishment in few more cities, which will help it grow its revenue to Rs. 500 crore by 2021. No wonder, its alchemist team of 100 including a bunch of passionate architects who love the challenge of creating a dream home for every client, has been the pillar of DC’s strength.“We make a team with all its intense meanings. Besides training modules, we indulge in many recreational activities like weekly yoga day and movie nights,” adds Shezaan.

Having raised first round of funding last year, DC recently raised another multi-million dollar round of funding led by Fireside Ventures founded by Kanwaljit Singh (ex-MD, Helion VC Partners), and other HNI’s like ApurvaSalarpuria of the Salarpuria group and SidharthPansari of Primarc. This will further boost the technology and product innovation that the company is currently working on – creating an instant budget calculator, and bring in more enhanced version of online instant design creation. DC is also working on providing large experience centers to clients across India where one can come and see their design, touch and feel it – all to provide a real-life experience. “Innovations in design and technology will usher in new solutions going forward. This is why we have a core design and technology team which is active 24/7 to create designs that are future-ready, with features that will make your home a better place to live-in,” Shezaan concludes.

Key Management:
ShezaanBhojani, Co-Founder
An architect by qualification, Shezaan has travelled the world and sourced the best of company’s clients from Spain, Italy, Dubai& Indonesia. His exposure has been a game changer in designing world-class interior designs.

Gita Ramanan, Co-Founder
Gita's passion for perfection guides DC’s design team to ensure each project is executed to perfection. An architect who believes in the saying, ‘design is not just what it looks like, but how it works’, Gita heads a brilliant design team and is a confirmed bibliophile.

Office: Bangalore (three centers) – St. Marks Road, Basavanagudi& Whitefield

Awards & Recognitions: Most Innovative Small Business Award by Times Now & Entrepreneur India in 2016