Sarah Hilow’s business owners and real-life partner, Jürgen Hilow-Iwaszura and Mauro Guerini, is the epitome of how couples can celebrate work-life balance not only in work ethics but also in how they have designed their environment. Their two-bedroom apartment bears testimony on this celebration between life facets.
Both from Johannesburg, Guerini, and Hilow-Iwaszura have made sure everything about their life is balanced. Their dedication to work-life balance led them to their current apartment located in a c.1923 building in the southeastern portion of Milan.
When they moved into the apartment, they saw it in need of refreshing, especially when it hasn’t been renovated since the 70s. They have tapped SBG Architetti, an architecture firm in Milan, to implement their vision of reinvigorating the already antique-looking apartment to reflect their lifestyle.
The work took six months beginning with replastering and reinforcing walls, replicating the original parquet flooring in the living and dining space across the kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms. Afterward, they furnished the apartment with many antiques they have acquired over time from their old apartment.
The faded blush rose color for the living and dining room walls creates an offset to their peacock blue velvet sofa, their 1936 wood stereo, and the William Morris armchairs. The latter two came as a turnover from Hilow-Iwaszura’s grandparents’ South African home.
The dining room is where they displayed their 18th-century Lombardian portraits, the Victorian taxidermy, and the mid-19th-century English mahogany dining table. The dining table is also paired with antique chairs that once belonged to a family in Bologna.
Both Guerini and Hilow-Iwaszura admit they work together to make their home a place where they can work well together, encourage their creativity that inspires their salon business, and inspires them every day especially with the lockdown in Italy.
They also said that the apartment has given them something to do, which they both find a good thing and keeping them from being bored.