Entryway home entrance interior design
Tenants and landlords find a common ground in decorative wraps. Image Credit: Shutterstock

In Dubai’s property market, glossy seems to be on the way out in interiors. And more likely to be replaced with decorative wraps.

That’s right, more landlords, end-users and tenants are choosing wraps for renovating the interiors, And more businesses are getting into this space, with Danube’s interiors division being the latest.

Landlords get the cost saving benefits when upgrading their homes for new tenants, while for the latter, the wraps are an easy way to personalise rented homes. And without the concern of losing their deposit because the wrapping is fully reversible without causing damage to the original surface.

Sustainable upgrades

Decorative wraps are growing more prevalent, being a sustainable, aesthetically appealing alternative to traditional refurbishment methods. Aaron Mitchell, CEO of Creative Wraps, said, “In 2017, we installed approximately 350 square metres of material a month; now, we install, on average, 12,000 square metres a month, which is a 3,328 per cent increase in six years.” (Creative Wraps was the first company in the UAE to introduce interior wrapping to the region in 2017.)

However, as the interior wrapping demand has caught on, there are more than 15 dedicated wrapping companies in Dubai alone, including The Wrap, Totally Wrapped, and Wrap Zone. The latest addition is Danube Building Materials introducing Decorative Wraps.

Initially, it was all about wrapping kitchens, and then wet areas like bathrooms were upgraded using wraps. “Interior film wraps were used for everything, including pianos, interior doors, window frames, stairs, and much more, becoming a viable alternative to traditional renovation methods,” added Lloyd Williams, co-founder at Creative Wraps.

During the first year of business, most of their clients were tenants wrapping their kitchens, he added. By the second year, their clients were primarily landlords refurbishing their properties for potential tenants.

Even homeowners who wanted a dream kitchen without significant investment and the hassle of completely ripping out the kitchen to build a new one ended up with the wrapping solution.

Williams said that this saved them up to 80 per cent cost of replacing the kitchen itself—a win for the client and the environment. And office tenants are doing the same. “We helped a global company upgrade their office furniture, using approximately one kilometre of white matt to wrap the furniture, and completed in one day. It saved the client the headache of disposing of the existing furniture, sourcing new and keeping a large amount of material from going into the landfill. Every month we stop over 12,000 square metre of material going into landfill.”

Stock - Danube Warehouse
For Danube Building Materials, adding decorative wraps makes for a sound business move given the demand that is flowing in.

Value solutions

Wrapping solutions are done at a fraction of the cost of other refurbishment alternatives and are quicker. In short, it’s about offering a solution without replacing the existing settings. “For example, the kitchen layout is OK, and only the colour of the kitchen needs changing,” said Mitchell. “The interior doors are fine and in good condition, but the design is outdated. That’s where wrapping comes in, where we don’t replace; we upgrade.”

Many hotels, schools, and restaurants consider interior wrapping a viable solution, providing value to them and solving many of their problems related to budget or design. Swamy Kannapan, GM Procurement of Danube Building Materials, said wraps are gaining popularity in homes and hotels alike. “It will be an excellent choice for hotels to change the decors of all their room at a fraction of the cost and without losing revenue.”

This month Danube Building Materials launched Decorative Wraps as their new product line and with an experience centre.

Design trends

The new properties in UAE come with pre-installed doors, wardrobes and doors with a common decor for the entire project. Here wraps allow people to personalise the interior settings based on their style and preferences.

The wardrobes and kitchens at almost all residences in UAE are done in dark brown or red cherry colours, which are outdated and become boring. These are being replaced with elegant-looking uni colours. “Whites and shades of grey are the most fast-moving items,” said Kannapan. “Painted wood, a uni colour with wood texture, is another popular option.

“Glossy surfaces are being replaced with matt or super matt surfaces. White bright marbles are being used in place of the good old grey granites. Another evolving trend is using concrete textured surfaces in offices and commercial spaces.

“Dark wood grains are replaced with light and trendy-looking oaks. We expect these wraps to replace the use of typical surface décor products like veneer, laminates and melamine MDF at some of the new constructions.”