People of Park Hill: Christian Hawley, Nest
Christian Hawley is the founder and CEO of Sheffield-based luxury furniture and lighting retailer, Nest.
In 2021, the company announced the acquisition of a second site, The Scottish Queen – which will become a new design-led showroom, due to open in Summer 2022. Once one of the four original onsite pubs at Park Hill, the space is 3,500 sq. ft and includes a basement and terraces to both sides. Nest has personal connections to the space – with employees’ relatives having worked in the Scottish Queen when it was a pub.
A design enthusiast, Christian unsurprisingly loves concrete and brutalist buildings. “If you love concrete and modern buildings, then this doesn’t get any better. It’s an ideal base for a business which is rooted locally, and the perfect home for our new, dedicated design destination. It won’t be strange being here as I also already know some of the business owners.”
Nest was born in 2001, after a holiday around the world opened Christian’s eyes to great interior design. He and his wife, a holistic beauty therapist, did a lot of travelling before setting up their business, becoming inspired by the contemporary spaces they encountered, especially in Australia. In normal times they are still travelling, and sourcing statement pieces for the business.
Christian was an IT broker in the early 90’s, something that was instrumental in Nest embracing e-commerce at an early stage. One of the earliest adopters of online retail in their field, this took on an important extra dimension during the pandemic. However, the opportunity to meet and speak with customers face-to face remains key, and Christian is looking forward to the opening of Nest’s new Park Hill showroom.
“I’m Sheffield through and through – I’m from a family of Sheffield Wednesday fans and a friendly Yorkshire welcome is core to Nest’s values. The idea of being on site at Park Hill and meeting more residents in our new showroom is exciting. I like the idea of people coming here, being able to travel the world through our furniture and maybe even taking a piece of iconic design home with them.”
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