Krynauw Nel graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand with a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture in 1989 having received several certificates of merit, particularly in his major subjects. He completed his first residential projects while still a student and spent a year travelling the Middle East, Europe and America. In 1987, he completed a practical year with an architectural firm in London, specializing in upmarket residential work in areas such as Little Venice, Chelsea and Mayfair. He formed a close association and collaborated with legendary British interior designer David Hicks, son-in-law of Lord Louis Mountbatten, for several years. Joint projects included work in Portugal, Cape Town and the Natal Midlands.