Katharine Pooley Celebrates 20 Years Of Designing Beautiful Homes

By CTH Editors

6 months ago

Katharine Pooley is a Great British Brand 2024

Katharine Pooley is an entry into our Great British Brands 2024 book.

Katharine Pooley: Great British Brand 2024

‘Bringing the best of British craftsmanship and design to the world is a personal passion that sits at the heart of every single one of our projects. 

This year we are celebrating 20 years since I left the world of banking in Hong Kong and Singapore, and opened the Katharine Pooley Design Studio in London. It feels like a lifetime ago. It has been a whirlwind of incredible properties, uniquely beautiful designs and unforgettable clients, many of whom have become true, life-long, friends. Across two decades my team and I have completed over 890 projects worldwide in 24 different countries. 

Living room at 9 Millbank

From hotels, yachts, castles, ski chalets, palaces, and contemporary private residences, the scope of work has been extraordinary and the scale unsurpassed. This year is one of our most exciting to date with projects in Sardinia, the Bahamas, the South of France, the US, the Middle East, and of course London and the English countryside. We have just opened our second satellite office, in New York, and finished work on the interior of the historic 9 Millbank development in Westminster, and I am currently working on a new book. Altogether, it is a very creative and stimulating time. 

Every element of the projects we create is anchored in personal relationships, both those with our clients and those with my talented and passionate team. It’s one of the reasons I am less concerned about the growth of AI. Although AI will undoubtedly prove useful in the future (especially when building efficiencies and sustainability concepts into large architectural packages), fundamentally I believe nothing can replace the value and necessity of the human viewpoint in design. 

Creating a beautiful home is like breathing life into a building: we add colour, texture, form and beauty to an environment and give it personality, elegance and, some might say, a soul. What could be more wonderful, and more human.’

Katharine Pooley, founder

Kate Martin at Millbank Terrace

Five Proudest Moments

  1. Publishing my first book, Journey by Design, with Assouline in 2017.
  2. Being named British Interior Designer of the Decade in 2019 by Design Et Al.
  3. Completing the design of Château de la Croix-des Gardes in 2023. This historic château was the setting for Grace Kelly and Cary Grant in To Catch a Thief.
  4. Launching our yacht division in 2023 and seeing our first yacht win a prestigious award. 
  5. Starting work with the Childhood Trust and transforming nearly 40 bedrooms since 2016. Winning the C&TH Community Award and the House & Garden Design for Positive Change Award for this work.

Detail of interior architecture at 9 Millbank

What I’ve Learnt…

  • Always look forward and strive towards new goals. Think big, aim for the stars and work without inhibition or doubt.
  • Trust is everything. I trust my 49 designers, architects and support staff implicitly.
  • Personal involvement is key. Fundamentally it’s my name on the door, so compromise, in terms of quality and craftsmanship, is not in my vocabulary.


160 Walton Street, London SW3 2JL 

+44 (0)20 7584 3223