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Tarina Patel shows Top Billing her Indian inspired home

Top Billing tours Tarina Patel's stunning Indian palace

When actress and producer Tarina Patel came to designing the interiors of her and Iqbal Sharma’s new home, she’d just suffered a major loss in her life. Re-connecting with her Indian heritage – through this project – was the best therapy she could have hoped for.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

Tarina’s initial décor theme was going to be French or Venetian but after her father, Dr Ramanbhai Patel, passed away from an autoimmune illness, it was a shared love of their Indian Heritage which swayed her towards this design.

The exterior of her Sandton home has a true Bollywood drama flair, with grand high ceilings and beautifully intricate elephants carved from a single block of marble.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

The drama unfolds as you enter the triple volume, domed foyer with its twin staircases and hand-painted murals. On either side of the twin staircases you’ll find 14 metre long Kashmir carpets with an intricate pattern designed by Tarina herself.

The house has a distinct detail that could only come with hours of manual labour and delicate hands-on work, including the beautiful hand painted screen doors with brass elephant door knobs that open in to the formal lounge.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

While many of the furniture pieces stand out, the dark wooden arches in the lounge which were previously in Indian palaces are particularly striking, and are made by Indian craftsmen with rare skills passed down through centuries.

Some of the more antique pieces in the house are four hundred years old and Tarina has complimented them with a range of her own creations, like the beautiful gold-detailed hand-sewn pillows she designed individually herself.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

These pieces all sit under mirror mosaic ceilings in the style of the seventeenth century Palace of Mirrors.

The only clear departure from the Indian theme is the more Venetian, Italian approach Tarina chose for the most private part of the house, the master suite.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

This special space has a softer palette, but still has immense detail, including the fabrics and wallpapers Tarina had especially made.

Her husband Iqbal Sharma’s well-publicised business interests between South Africa and the East keep him very busy, but he was still fully involved in the design project.

Top Billing Tarina Patel home

The two are celebrating their tenth wedding anniversary this year, and they can definitely be defined as a power couple. In their personal relationship as in their exotic, contemporary Mughal palace in Sandton, it’s what’s inside that really counts.
 Tarina, the home and design magazines would be mightily impressed but more importantly – your father would be so proud of his daughter. Outstanding job!

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