YSG is an acronym for the founder’s name, Yasmine Saleh Ghoniem and the practice launched on the auspicious date of 20/02/2020. Starting a new practice on the cusp of the pandemic lockdown was ominous!
The root of the studio stems back to 2013 when Ghoniem co-founded the multi award-winning Sydney-based design collective, Amber Road, with sister, Katy Svalbe, who provided landscape architecture. In the span of just six years, this practice won and/or was shortlisted for over 40 design accolades, bolstering its reputation as one of Australia’s most directional design studios.
By 2019 Ghoniem realised that she wanted to focus solely on her interior offering, with the possibility of presenting clients new builds and extensive alterations and additions and so in early 2020, Amber Road was engulfed by YSG and Svalbe launched her solo landscape architecture practice.
Given that Ghoniem’s projects comprise over 90 percent customised elements – from furniture and joinery through to ceiling murals and carpet designs – she also wanted to further explore furniture and furnishing design collaborations with design companies for the retail sector which to date include Laminex 2021 and 2022, custom rugs for Tappeti (soon to launch) and release her own ranges for the home which are in production now.
By January 2021 Ghoniem realised that she would need to employ staff as a number of new projects were now on the books. To this end, Ghoniem employed two registered architects, a co-director to oversee the operational side of the business and key senior interior designers who can ably lead projects and design collaborations. This frees up the day-to-day business and allows her to oversee the creative on every project. Combined, the YSG team now 15 strong contributes a range of expertise, cultural experiences and international working experience with a diverse staff that originate from Argentina, Japan, Wales, China, Hungary, Switzerland, New Zealand and Australia and currently, business is booming.
To add to the triumphs within 12 months of launching YSG won five major design accolades, was named in the January 2022, AD100 definitive list of the most influential interior designers, architects and designers across the world in January 2022 in the European editions of Architectural Digest and won Interior Designer of the Year at the IDEA awards among many other accolades.
Photography: Headshot by Prue Ruscoe; Budge Over Dover by Prue Ruscoe; Atomic Beer Project by Anson Smart; Johnson Partners by Prue Ruscoe.