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That Mama: Nadia Sallustio, Owner of Lifestyle Concept Store The Den on City Walk

Nadia Sallustio
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Inspiring Mamas In Dubai

Having lived in Dubai for more than 10 years, Nadia Sallustio is a local through and through. With a background in art, she’s owner of super cool concept store The Den in City Walk – a treasure trove of decorative items and signature pieces of furniture that we seriously covet. A mama of 3 gorgeous kids, Nadia tells us about everything from her daily inspiration to how she juggles motherhood, work and everything in between!

Can you tell us a little about yourself and your career?
I am a painter trained at ‘ Les beaux-Arts’ in Belgium, I’m obsessed with details, colours, light and materials without compromising on either comfort or pleasure. I take inspiration from my travels and by daily surroundings in the vibrant city of Dubai to create my very own spontaneous.

Nadia Sallustio

Describe yourself in 5 words.
Creative, performer, colourful, decoration, family-oriented.

How do you balance work and motherhood?
It’s new for me! It is a daily balance, and I need to adjust it each day. In the morning, I’m a business woman at my boutique and in the afternoon, I’m a mum with my kids. Then I go back to work in the evening!

How do you save time? What are your organisational tips and tricks?
I’m working on it!

Do you have any tips for aspiring “mamapreneurs” and other working mamas in Dubai?
By yourself, believe in your dreams and don’t forget that your priority is your family, who will always be your “DEN”.

Nadia Sallustio

Describe your average day.
I wake up early at 6am, drive the kids to school at 7.30am. Then I take some time for myself with Jeanique, my inspiring Pilates and Yoga coach in JLT. And after long day without any schedule. 😉

If you were stranded on a desert island – which 3 children’s items would you not be able to live without?
Jack’s comfort, water bottle, hat and Maya’s phone for “call  for help”.

Favourite activity with your kids in Dubai?
Walk on the beach or afternoon at home around the swimming pool. The activities or location is not the most important, we are just looking to spend quality time together. For the time being, my house is my  place of creativity.

Read more: Best Beaches in Dubai

Favourite kid-friendly restaurants in Dubai?
Jamie Oliver’s restaurant, Bubbalicious Brunch in Westin Hotel, Reform at Lakes.

Read more: Sassy Mama Meets Jamie Oliver

Dream family vacation?
Six Senses Maldives.

Read more: Mama Takes the Maldives

Do you have any tips for keeping the romance alive in your relationship?
Save time together, book time in with your husband. Book a weekend without kids around, and communicate with a good glass of wine.

Favourite date-night restaurants?
Play, 101, Coya, Bistro des Arts.

Nadia Sallustio

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received as a parent?
You’re not born a mother, you become one!

Who is your hero or heroine and why?
I don’t have one! I try to be my own heroine. I’m actually working on my own one-woman show: “Moi Super les Autres Bof!”, which means “I’m a super woman, whatever!”

Give us your essential new mama advice that might never occur to other women.
Plan as much as possible, think ahead and be as organised as you can. This will cut down on time and stress. Organise your baby station into easy to access areas. Having a place for everything and keeping it stocked up is a great help when you are rushing to get out the door in the mornings.

What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you?
The first gift from my boyfriend Fabio: Gorilla feet slippers… he later became my husband!

As a mama I wish I were better at…
Cooking and baking to be more of a superstar at my kids birthday parties!

My most humbling mama moment was…
Crying in front of my daughter’s swimming teacher because she had not been selected for the gala… Not good!

One thing I won’t sacrifice as a mama is…
To always be there for my kids. I will always put them first without compromise.

I wake up in the middle of the night thinking about…
Thinking that I will have to wake up again in few hours. Trying to switch my mind off can be a difficult task. I wake up thinking of everything from family to business. Learning to quiet my mind is not easy.

Even when my children have families of their own, I’ll still…
I will still be there on their back! I will continue to put in two cents in their lives!

My favourite moment of the day is…
l’aperitif, of course!

I always feel saner after…
A weekend without alcohol.

I wish I had more time for…
Creativity to set up more home staging inside my boutique.

Bedtime is always smoother when…
When my day comes together! As Hannibal Smith said from The A Team. 😉

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