Stakis Prize

Interior Design School of Design

Hanya Kamel (She/Her)

I am an interior designer driven by creating meaningful playful spaces. Throughout my time at GSA, I have developed a passion for integrating playful solutions within my projects to create more approachable, immersive and experiential environments. I believe in the power of entertainment within design, to drive positive change and encourage supportive interaction, loosening constructs in the process. I enjoy exploring and testing the possibilities that arise from integrating the theatrics and appeal of entertainment into a wide range of typologies, to push boundaries of my discipline further. Within my projects, I enjoy building design strategies and identities with the intention to inspire new memorable experiences, while paying attention to produce an outcome that benefits and attends to social change, in an exciting and stimulating way.

This year, my project ‘Dear Fiction House’ is a Cancer Recovery House that challenges boundaries of healthcare, through the primary use of entertainment as a means for healing.

Instagram: @hanya.kamel
Project Chapters
Dear Fiction House
Control Station
The Fiction Journey
The Theatre
Fiction Hall
Bespoke Elevators
Room Towers

Dear Fiction House

Cancer Survivors Journey to Recovery


Dear Fiction House is a Cancer Recovery House that challenges boundaries of healthcare, through the primary use of entertainment as a means for healing. The Fiction House takes cancer survivors on a hopeful, explorative, and experiential healing journey, allowing them to reestablish their drive in a stimulating setting.

Often healthcare spaces are unsupportive to Cancer sufferers and survivors due to their mundane atmospheres and their lack of providence of sense of control. Dear Fiction House challenges these constructs with an aim to deinstitutionalize and destigmatize the recovery healthcare environment through a playful and inventive approach, allowing them to gain independence in a creative engagement process.

With an uplifting energy, the space is sensitively designed to allow each individual to be in control of their own unique recovery journey. Dear Fiction House encourages the engagement with positivist interactive entertainment, immersive, mediated and beyond, to aid their restoration and provide meaningful social interactions. This can loosen intimidation in recovery spaces and change the tone of voice, allowing the individual to feel more at ease. The approach shifts to focus on transparency, with emphasis on friendly and inviting atmospheres, to build a community experience, reducing loneliness in the Cancer community.

The integration of entertainment can allow individuals to find enjoyment and meaning in their healing journey, influencing stimulative restorative effects. This can make recovery a manageable experience, getting away from the mindset of ‘life or death’, implementing a more hopeful message.

At Dear Fiction House, there are two entertainment strategies: Positive Distraction and Constructive Entertainment. These are integrated in the various interactive spaces around the building, promoting the sense of choice. This can constructively support the recuperative process, mentally and physically. Through this play of experiential healing, a supportive ground is built, providing care, consideration and hope in a vitalizing setting, deinstitutionalizing recovery healthcare environments in the process.


An Invitation


The entrance experience into the Fiction House is designed to be engaging to loosen any fears that can emerge, offering a peace of mind. making the experience a smooth and reassuring journey in and out.

Building Elevation

Building Elevation

Dear Fiction House Enterance

Close Connection to the River Clyde

Dear Fiction House is located in the Former Cotton Mills in Dalmarnock, Glasgow (121 Carstairs Street)

Reception Interaction

The reception area is designed to be dynamic, lively and charismatic, ensuring to leave a positive lasting first impression. A moment of immersion occurs, positively distracting visitors.

Reception Interaction

The reception area is presented in an open plan setting to allow for ease of movement and improved line of sight for carers. The space is arranged with comfort in mind, with flexible options to promote the sense of choice for the visitor.

Control Station

The Establishment of the Sense of Control


The sense of control is an important factor that is prioritized in the Fiction House, to allow individuals to feel a sense of personal choice in the uptake and implementation of their recovery. To make harnessing the sense of control a creative engagement process, the design strategy is built on deconstructing healing into layers within the space. Because everyone’s healing journey is uniquely different, the many healing surfaces in the space will be beneficial to provide flexibility, making it more digestible, adding to the overall inviting experience.

The healing layers are categorized into 4 main methods: ‘Heal with You’, ‘Heal with Care’ ‘Heal with Support’ ‘Heal with Fiction’.  These are represented as ‘Control Cards’ and are the main interactive feature in the space.



Control Cards

The ‘Control Cards’ offers visitors and residents the opportunity to define their own recovery journey, through a guided immersive experience by allowing them to choose the activity they want to participate in. This feature uses playful yet clear symbols, making it an accessible quality of the journey.

Control Station Structure

The control cards are present in the ‘Control Station’, a landmark which is present on each floor of the Fiction House for ease of access. This strategy can act as a tool to boost their confidence and independence when there is no staff around, developing a creative and playful engagement process.

Control Station Interaction

Interactions and Zones in the Control Station


Storyboard exploring the playful engagement process to define their own recovery journey within the Fiction House.

The Fiction Journey

Experience the Fiction House Journey


A world of possibilities and interactive opportunities aiding Cancer Survivors individual healing journeys within the Fiction House.

The Theatre

The Fiction Theatre is accessed mainly through a different specialist entrance that embodies the playfulness of the brand. The space allows visitors to interact together in an immersive setting, creating a beautiful sense of community.


The entrance dramatically marks the threshold of a new journey, allowing people to anticipate and be immersed in it’s atmospheric gaze.

A Dramatic Transition

The noise softens, concealed through the acoustic quality of the thick walls, causing a shift in atmosphere as you pass through the transition leading to the theatre’s reception.

Theatre Reception

Theatre Perspective Section

The dynamic changes and build up within the journey through the Fiction theatre create the space for free interaction, exploration and the feeling of belonging to a community through the love of performance, positively distracting visitors and residents.

Fiction Hall

The Fiction Hall is a space based on entertainment for recovery interventions. It functions like an interactive museum where people can experience the space through a journey route. Interventions here include: Fiction Gallery, Immersive Installations, Community Art, Experience Route, Aromatherapy and Embed Music Room.

Fiction Hall Section

A dynamic view through the Fiction Hall, offering a world of possibilities that people can experience. The entertainment interventions are designed with purpose to offer either a positive distractive effect or constructive effect, allowing Cancer Survivors to experience a defined journey of their own.

Embed Room Experience

The embed room offers the opportunity for people to experience their own music allowing self-expression. It combines tactile restorative sensory effects with sound offering a multi-sensory interactive experience.

Support Group Experience

Support group spaces in The Fiction House integrate an art installation to target self-reflection healing responses.

A Powerful Conversation

The support group space uses an interactive light installation and soft sensory materials to create an emotive and relaxed atmosphere. The interest of this atmosphere contrasts well with the function of a support group, targeting their self-reflection. Here, neurotherapy monitors their mental wellbeing throughout the support group session, creating a strong and powerful sense of belonging to a group.

Bespoke Elevators

The Bespoke Elevators are a recognizable landmark within the building, offering a unique immersive transitional experience.

Bespoke Elevator

Two bespoke elevators are strategically placed on either end of the Fiction House, between the room towers, further enhancing people's journey experience. They are designed with a circular, dome-like structure, featuring a glass wall that allows people to look at the stimulating view of the Fiction House through a void space.

Elevator Closed

Elevator Opening

Room Towers

My Fiction House

Rooms in The Fiction House are designed as Towers, rather than floors to minimize long corridors that feel endless. This was a strategic decision considering the large scale of my site. People can locate to the elevator nearest their room towers, making wayfinding easier and more manageable.

Room Tower Section

The Room Towers opens the opportunity for communities and friends to emerge and gather, as each 3 rooms share an indoor balcony overlooking the world of fiction that awaits them. This makes it feel less institutional and more personal and friendly - a safe zone.

A Peaceful Serenity

The rooms are designed with consideration to the needs of the individual, making sure to be neutral while maintaining the playful character of the Fiction house. The balcony extends the floor length of the room, adding an extra dimension to the space.

Bedroom Elevation

More Healing Journey Experiences

The Forest

Forest Plan

Therapy Pod Seating

Blissful Connection

In the therapy pod, there is an integration of guided meditation and music therapy available to allow Cancer Survivors to relax in the sanctuary of the forest.


The Spa

An atmospheric spa awaits, with a view over the River Clyde, community energy emerges here beautifully during their Hydrotherapy session. Here, a restorative purpose meets community engagement. In the Fiction spa, residents can interact independently or together, providing a choice for their sessions (Hydrotherapy, Physiotherapy, Massage, Sauna) in a stimulating and relaxing ambience.


Cassette Music Therapy

In this space, ‘Dawn’ devices create a sensory experience through the application of multiples of ambient sounds, allowing the user to meditate, causing positive distraction to occur.


Consultation Space

Dear Fiction house encourages transparency in care. Within the Consultation area, people can freely express their thoughts or worries and can get redirected to follow-up care.


Bakery Display

A playful scene unfolds through the arcade-like design integrated within the bakery, adding a theatrical touch to the space.


Ground Floor Plan

First Floor Plan

Second Floor Plan

Third Floor Plan

Fourth Floor Plan