Generic filters
Exact matches only

Architect of Storied Places

This year, architectural firm OBMI celebrates 58-years in the BVI. Managing Director Marvin Flax - a BVI native tells Erin Paviour-Smith about the firm’s proud heritage in the Territory, the region and around the globe.

The OBMI story begins over eight decades ago in Bermuda. Wilfred Onions and fellow architect Val Bouchard designed the influential Bermuda style homes, now a characteristic of the island.

The firm evolved into the commercial sector and was joined by John McCulloch, who expanded the firm’s footprint in the Caribbean. In the 1960s, interior design, landscape architecture and master planning were added to the firm’s suite of services. This was the beginning of OBMI.

Today, the architecture, master planning and interior design firm with particular strengths in sustainability and wellness, operates in 10 locations around the globe and employs over 100 experts and specialists in the field, imagining, designing and planning private residences, resort communities, branded residential, mixed-use commercial and ultra-luxury hospitality developments.

“We intend to create visionary spaces that tell a story that is synonymous with the location. We carefully discover the innate essence of a destination and translate it into something unique and extraordinary” says Tim Peck, OBMI Chairman.

Since 1966, OBMI’s expertise has been helping to shape the BVI community. “OBMI has contributed greatly to the islands’ built environment, from commercial, to hotel and hospitality, private residences and interior spaces,” says Marvin Flax, Managing Director and International Associate in the BVI.


Over the years, architectural styles have evolved in the BVI, but one can always identify a home designed by OBMI through its distinct features and aesthetic. The proportions of the home, a combination of symmetry/asymmetry, materials, the pitch of the roof and how the home sat within the confines of the property were all indicators that it was an OBMI home.

The unique and timeless design elements were unmistakable” he says.

Raised on Tortola – as a youngster Marvin visited construction sites with his grandfather who was in the industry and worked with many architects of the time.

Incredibly, OBMI has been a part of Marvin’s life since he was just 14 years old. He learned technical drawing from some of the original OBMI architects. This helped to fuel his passion for the industry which was clearly in him from a young age.

“Marvin would come to the office after school and practice his drafting and it was then that he became part of the OBMI family. When he left the BVI to study architecture and work in the US, I was always chasing him to come back and join our BVI team. My ambition was to one day see him in charge of the BVI office, and in 2016 that dream became a reality” says Tim Peck.

The BVI team, under Marvin’s watchful eye, have worked on many notable commercial and private residential projects.

A significant design influence on the Oil Nut Bay resort development, as well as luxury hospitality and villa projects including Villa Katsura, Baraka Point and Rosewood Little Dix Bay Resort, all on Virgin Gorda, the spectacular Nora Hazel Point residences on Tortola and within the wider region, the Nevaeh residences on Anguilla, to name just a select few.

“In terms of exciting projects that will soon be completed, the team is proud to continue our long-standing relationship with Peter Island Resort, unveiling a new design at the end of this year,” says Marvin.

We have also privileged to have welcomed several talented architects and interior designers, who are currently crafting bespoke properties through our newly established Boutique Residential Studio.

After almost 30-years, Marvin is a thought leader and trusted advisor in the BVI architectural and construction industries and leads a highly skilled and experienced team of architects and interior designers that understand the unique nature of our communities and precious environment, which he is passionate about preserving.

“Our design stories are for the present and future, created with a keen sense of responsibility. In everything we do, we intend to support our clients in leading sustainable practices for the ultimate wellbeing of the places and communities where our designs are found” says Marvin.

Like this article? Sign up to our newsletter!