Joaquin Olaverria takes the reins at Foscari Interiors (foscariinteriors.com), the Euro-style custom cabinetry company founded by his mother, and ushers in a creative new future.
Foscari’s newly appointed CEO, Joaquin Olaverria PHOTO COURTESY OF FOSCARI INTERIORS
What has it been like becoming CEO at Foscari? It’s been nothing but fun and challenging. I have been working for Foscari for almost 10 years to date—my mother, Monica Wehbi, started the company in 2007, so when I left high school I started working alongside her. It began as just a job, but as the years passed by, I started training myself and learning from experience and my mother’s knowledge, and seeing innovative and fresh ways that the bus could run. It caught my attention and made me want to proceed with the business, and with making a lot of internal changes.
Do you get a chance to work on the creative side of things? I am more involved in design and working alongside clients than ever, such as overseeing big residential projects that really allow me to work on more than a room—it allows me to expand my creativity and take on bigger projects, provide client solutions and optimize resources to make these high-end goods more accessible to clients. It’s been a roller coaster of fine-tuning everything from the creative side to expanding our network of vendors.
What new home design trends are you excited about right now? Dark, bolder colors are very much in rather than the contemporary white, white, white that we saw in the early 2000s, as well as a lot of pastel colors, and lots of textures from way back in time like terrazzo and concrete.
Foscari boasts myriad bold hues for its designers to work with. PHOTO COURTESY OF FOSCARI INTERIORS
What has it been like working with clients this past year? With everything that has been happening, it has definitely been a time of change in the way that we work with clients and projects. We never used to have online meetings; now everything is being done over Zoom calls. We are trying to make everything more accessible to the client and to the designers. And I do see in the market that people are spending more time at home, and they have more free time, so the demand for residential projects has been going up.
What is your top seller at Foscari? Kitchens would be the main thing that people associate with us, but we do full residential projects and have been getting a lot of requests for offices, closets and bathrooms as well.
And what is your newest product? In 2021, we came out with seven new colors for the Johnson Collection, which comes from Argentina. We are always expanding our vendors and resources in order to stay up to date.