Upper West Side Combo is a prewar apartment renovation by design firm StudioLAB of two dark and tightly configured units into a single unified space, located in Manhattan, New York. The designers were challenged with the task of converting the existing arrangement into a large open three bedroom residence. The previous configuration of bedrooms along the Southern window wall resulted in very little sunlight reaching the public spaces.
Breaking the norm of the traditional building layout, the bedrooms were moved to the West wall of the combined unit, while the existing internally held Living Room and Kitchen were moved towards the large South facing windows, resulting in a flood of natural sunlight.
Wide-plank grey-washed walnut flooring was applied throughout the apartment to maximize light infiltration. A concrete office cube was designed with the supplementary space which features walnut flooring wrapping up the walls and ceiling. Two large sliding Starphire acid-etched glass doors close the space off to create privacy when screening a movie.
High gloss white lacquer millwork built throughout the apartment allows for ample storage. LED Cove lighting was utilized throughout the main living areas to provide a bright wash of indirect illumination and to separate programmatic spaces visually without the use of physical light consuming partitions.
Custom floor to ceiling Ash wood veneered doors accentuate the height of doorways and blur room thresholds. The master suite features a walk-in-closet, a large bathroom with radiant heated floors and a custom steam shower. An integrated Vantage Smart Home System was installed to control the AV, HVAC, lighting and solar shades using iPads.
Photos: Courtesy of StudioLAB
This Upper West Side Manhattan apartment has been designed by 1100 Architect, comprised of a neutral color palette, minimalist details, and refined materials, creating a warm, modern atmosphere. Throughout the space, sleek materials like concrete, marble, and white lacquer are complemented by accents of softer materials including Belgian linen and bleached wood. 1100 renovated this duplex apartment in 2008 and returned for a second renovation when the neighboring unit became available in 2010.
Careful detailing and a cohesive design approach allowed us to seamlessly combine the two apartments into a single home. A breakfast area was added to the existing kitchen, acting as a transitional space and opening up views across the apartment. Two new bedrooms and a utility room were also included in the addition.
1100 Architect is the New York- and Frankfurt-based architectural firm, best known for works of architecture that are timeless manifestations of place, at once distinctive and modern while always thoughtful about site, setting, and environment. Fundamental to this pursuit is the belief that building design is a progressive process informed by client aspirations, site, history, available resources, and time. We believe that design can motivate and inspire users, and make an affirmative, lasting impact on individuals and communities alike.
Photos: Nikolas Koenig
Boathouse Home Office has been refurbished and transformed by design studio Bean Buro into a live / work / play three bedroom apartment, located in Aberdeen, Hong Kong. The 1,200 square foot apartment is located inside a high-rise residential building. Designed in response to the growing trend of working-from-home culture, the apartment showcases large panoramic windows facing the sea boating sceneries in Aberdeen, as a balanced calm and dynamic home office for an expat couple with three cats.
The new concept demolished two existing partition walls to create a large bedroom and a larger lounge adjoining to an open studio space. The opened up spaces increases panoramic window views, thus allowing the external Aberdeen boating environment to be experienced inside.
The material palette is calm and refreshing, with a tranquil blue color chosen for the continuous blue wall to reflect the sea, while the timber finish for the floor and joinery brings warmth to the live & work space.
Drawing inspirations from traditional French boathouses in Brittany, the main architectural concept was a continuous ribbon-like blue wall that ‘floats’ and connects all the different areas of the apartment together. The blue wall starts from the lounge, with subtle computer generated display niches. It then forms the main circulation space with various shelves for displaying art. It creates an intuitive experience by linking up the lounge with the office and ending its blue color in the bedroom.
The main table, Bean Table, has two large pendant lights that form the centrepiece in the lounge. The bespoke CNC cut table shape is wiggly and playful, acting as a meeting table by day and dinning table by night.
Wrapping the entry space with full height hidden storage doors, it then falls to seat-height along the panoramic windows to create a an infinity-pool effect, and provides informal seating along the bay. Rising again as a half height timber wall, it partitions the office and the lounge while preserving open panoramic window views at eye level. On the other wall of the office is a full height bookshelf that acts as the main spatial element for storing and displaying personalized items.
The new timber surface was conceptualized as a ‘cats landscape’ that would rise and fall to provide different functions: it creates a beach threshold along the windows with an infinity-pool effect, an island dinning table to stage activities, a dynamic open studio, and a bed unit that faces the calm Aberdeen life.
The bed is an island unit that faces the panoramic windows, allowing the calm Aberdeen boating sceneries to be fully experienced. Full height mirrors are installed at the edges of each room’s end walls to create an infinity effect of the panoramic windows. The resulting experience is connected, intuitive and calm.
‘Boathouse’ Apartment was shortlisted as “Best 10 Living Space” for the APIDA 2013 (Asia Pacific Interior Design Awards). The project was also featured in the APIDA publication.
Photos: Courtesy of Bean Buro
Villa in the Sky project is the transformation of two separate apartments on the top floors of a derelict building into a refined contemporary penthouse by Abraham John Architects, located in Bombay, India. The two apartments were remodeled and combined into 3,500 square feet of luxurious living, made suitable to the favorable tropical climate & the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Bombay.
The existing apartments had very different characters and were not in keeping with the client’s requirements. The client wanted a villa in the sky, something more minimalistic, architectural and totally connected with the landscape. All internal walls were demolished to create an open plan layout and recapture stunning views of the Arabian Sea on the west and tree lined slopes of Mount Mary Hill on the East.
Being near the sea and on the 7th& 8thfloors of an existing building, there were many construction challenges, from the logistical point of view & the high velocity sea breeze, further, work had to happen with the consent of the neighbors. A brand new staircase cantilevered off the columns helped connect the two spaces without loading the cantilevered slab; the entire project took a year to complete.
The design approach took advantage of orientation: the sea is now visible from all rooms of the house, including the master bathroom. Previous cave-like rooms are turned into optimal, unusually large living spaces for Bombay standards. The main design principles followed were of orientation to the natural elements (sun, wind, water), openness and connection with nature at all levels (visual & physical), using natural & eco-friendly materials. Landscaped terraces and skylights created areas accessible from all rooms in the duplex. The kitchen is in the south east in keeping with Vastu, (the Indian principle of design) and is flooded with morning light.
The living area & the bedroom face the sea to allow for evenings spent with the sunset. Being a bachelor home, additional bedrooms were dispensed with to allow for a large master bedroom, walk-in wardrobe, bathroom and terrace which could be made private. The project encapsulates cool, contemporary living in its modern design with equal attention to aesthetics and environmental sustainability, employing energy-efficient. Low consumption technologies and letting one appreciate all its thoughtful detail, inventive and practical ways of creating proficient storage and comfortable living spaces.
The living area:
The open floor plan makes the living, dining & kitchen areas merge into one big lounge connecting views of the lashing waves of the sea and the shore line on the west to the glittering leaves of the trees of Mount Mary Hill on the east. the shared vision of the client and the architect is seen in the minimal layout integrated with landscape, lighting, refreshing earthy colors & natural textures.
The kitchen & dining area:
The open kitchen with a brushed SS island platform is complemented by an enclosed kitchen specially designed for traditional Indian cooking. A teak tree forms the dining table and seating. The exiting pipelines were rerouted for easy access between the two kitchen areas, thus maximizing space utilization. The cold SS island contrasts with the otherwise warm colors and textures of the apartment. Visitors are encouraged to walk bare feet as is the custom. The dining table becomes the focal point for all activities in this relaxing apartment. The black kitchen cabinet forms the perfect backdrop for dinner conversations and parties.
The cantilevered staircase:
A balcony space was converted into a cantilevered wood & steel staircase set against imposing double height windows, visually & physically connecting the upper & lower volumes that were previously disconnected.
Automated blinds span the double height volume.
The master bedroom suite:
The master bedroom suite overlooks the sky lit terrace, with spectacular views of the Arabian sea.
The skylight and pergola protect from the tropical sun and the seasonal monsoon rains.
The flooring pattern enhances the line of sight and continues from indoors to outdoors: dark stained wooden floors and teak wooden deck add drama to each room, offering a personal elegance to everyday spaces
The master bathroom & walk-in wardrobe:
The master bedroom suite includes a private sea-facing terrace, a lavish walk-in wardrobe & an open plan spa bathroom – a fluidity of private spaces that retain total privacy while blending with the landscape. A spacious master bathroom is complete with a jacuzzi, shower, proficient storage, landscape, mood lighting and automation.
The media room:
The hi-tech glass walled media room on top complete with a large size projector screen, concealed ac, av & automation, blurs the boundary between indoors and outdoors to expand the home’s sense of space: it overlooks the sea as well as a spacious wooden deck with a walk-on glass skylight. the luxuriant terrace garden serves as an expansive outdoor entertaining area with artful illumination and an open bar – a real hotspot. automated roller blinds concealed in the roofing convert the open media room into a large, yet cozy home theater for movies, F1 & football matches.
Landscape, materials & contextual relevance:
The home fits within its tropical seaside context and encourages sustainability: reclaimed sleeper wood for garden screens & pergolas, natural stone, recycled tiles, high efficiency mechanical systems, durable engineered wood & natural fabrics; automation with mood lighting, power saving & curtain control, solar heaters & evergreen terrace gardens.
Interior solar shades & large double-glazed sliding windows allow natural ventilation, uninterrupted views & access to landscaped areas, while cutting down on solar radiation and air-conditioning load.
A limited palette of complementary materials ensures consistency in design & minimizes maintenance, adding warmth and texture through light & shadow. the interiors are finely detailed with custom-made furniture. materials used accentuate warmth & transparency.
Photos: Alan Abraham
Real Parque Loft was designed for a recently married young entrepreneur by Diego Revollo Arquitetura, located in the south zone from São Paulo, Brazil, in a strictly residential buildings neighborhood. The buildings were built in the 80 and 90 decade and for this reason, the architects started from a traditional compartmentalized apartment with exaggerated number of divisions and closed rooms related to its area.
The main challenge was to open the 1,130 square foot (105 square meters) space, bring the sense of amplitude within the existing structural limitations. In this sense, the owner, was willing for profound changes and already felt attracted by the spatial characteristics of lofts as well as the contemporary aesthetic common in these cases.
The idea of a box with just a coating, burned cement, would bring the contemporary aspect and look like “clean” without amendments or interruptions and would be applied on all surfaces such as floors, walls and ceilings. A particular care has been taken into account in choosing the gray’s tone, which should be modern but not too cold and close by the natural cement’s tone. In the baths we used for the slabs the natural Oasis Blue limestone with a similar tone of cement, employed only as an alternative to cement, to be more appropriate for slabs and carved sinks.
For the owner a cold or too modern result wouldn’t please him, he searched an elegant atmosphere but also comfortable an “hot”. The suggestion of the office was the alliance of the cement and the natural wood inn a reddish chestnut brown tone to “heat up” the environment and that would add value in decorative point of view.
In some places such as the entrance, dining bench and the balcony seat, the Cumaru wood, a Brazilian’s hardwood with high resistance was used by rules to make the wood “weigh” even more. Where the use of solid wood wasn’t viable either by weight or by the natural movement, we chose for the Pau Ferro sheet, a wood with enough personality and a similar design to the Jacarandá, one of the main wood used in furniture production peak in Brazil in the 50 and 60 decade, for example.
The furniture and interior design continues with the choice of textiles as the natural linen or the distressed leather and prioritizes the warm touch and comfort always against the coldness of the cement box. The end result is a loft without excesses, spacious and extremely pleasant to live.
Photos: Alain Brugier
Apartment in Amsterdam is a renovation project of a duplex unit in an 85-year-old housing for a family of four, carried out by MAMM Design, located in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Since they have not been brought up in Amsterdam where they have a lot of gloomy weather, the clients requested to have maximum sunlight in the 1,431 square foot (133 square meters) house. They also wanted to have a space where they can feel close by each other.
Originally, there is a skylight at the top of staircase which connects upper and lower floors. Though the staircase itself was filled with sunlight coming from the skylight, the stairs and walls around them prevent the light from entering into the other part of the house. We took away the stairs, walls and a part of the upper floor’s slab, so that the sunlight can spread into all over the house. At the same time, the void connects the family.
There is a symbolic tower-shaped element standing through the house. Kitchen, bathroom and toilets are packed into the tower, utilizing existing pipe box. We placed new grating stairs climbing around the tower to create some place to stay at various levels. With the new circulation and spatial device, the family can create and enjoy various scenes of their daily life.
Photos: Takumi Ota
Midtown Apartment is a one bedroom contemporary home that has been designed by New York based interior design firm Cara Zolot Interiors, located in Midtown Manhattan, New York. Showcasing bright and welcoming interiors, this stunning apartment offers an open plan living/dining/kitchen area with one bedroom and one bathroom as well as a guest bedroom/office/TV room, with beautiful views of Central Park.
The client wanted a guest bedroom/office/TV room for this space. The sofa is a semi custom sleeper sofa from classic sofa and a custom designed leather club chair. the rug is a wall to wall strie carpet in caramel and beige muted tones. Vinatge modern nesting tables with a hammered copper lamp from Los Angeles. The coffee table is an antique painted tortoise like design and the art was a gift to our client. A natural grass cloth is on all the walls to really warm the space and pulls it all together adding great texture. It is a very warm cozy welcoming room with beautiful views of Central Park.
This bedroom I designed has navy blue ultra suede on all the walls, detailed with nail heads below the crown molding and above the base molding lining the entire bedroom. the bed was custom upholstered in the same ultra suede used on the walls. the bedside tables were custom made and the lamps and bulls eye mirror are all vintage mid-century modern.
Photos: Matthu Placek
London-based interior design firm Casa Forma has just sent us images of their latest project, One Hyde Park, the most exclusive address in the world, located in Knightsbridge, London, United Kingdom. Completed in December 2013, this stunning apartment reflects luxury, sophistication, and timeless interior design. The apartment is situated in a major residential and retail complex, with three retail units totaling 385,000 square feet and 86 residential properties. These hyper-luxury apartments range in price from around $4 million to $182 million USD.
When creating the interior design scheme for this 4,535 square foot apartment in One Hyde Park, Casa Forma’s focus was on practicality and functionality, whilst at the same time exuding the very best in bespoke luxury and elegance. The result is a sophisticated and timeless design, and a comfortable family home.
The immediate focus on entering the apartment is the long corridor leading to the main living space, with its magnificent views of Hyde Park itself.
Two features serve to particularly distinguish the corridor. Firstly, high-gloss sycamore panels add light and subtlety. And then, on the other side of the panel, an abstract map of the Hyde Park pathways – the bronze clasps and metalized panels and resin of which combine to create a subtle 3D effect.
The interior design of the main living space focuses on maximizing those incredible views of Hyde Park. Accents of beveled glass relief on mirrors framing all the joinery add an Art Deco touch to the room.
The modernist chandelier in the main living room is made from a collection of Brazilian rock crystals and bronze frame; the glow it emits visually increasing the ceiling height through its cut-outs. And at the entrance lobby, twin chandeliers designed with smoked quartz shards create a delicate quality of light, enhancing the ambiance of the space.
One of the four original bedrooms has been converted into a multi-function study room, which can also transform into a games room. The furniture is made from darkened solid Indian Rosewood in piano high gloss finish, and with the bespoke leather sofa able to convert into a large guest double-bed, this room can also easily be turned into a bedroom.
The introduction of a Swedish dry sauna in the en-suite bathroom linked to the study room was one of the most challenging aspects of this project. But thanks to Casa Forma’s strong architectural acumen, this small yet complex feature turned out to be an extremely successful addition to the property.
The powder room has been clad in silver & gold-leafed, treated with acid to create a tarnished effect for a more distressed and aged look.
In the dining room, the bronze profile and glass joinery is framed by a subtly backlit tortoise shell and tiger eye mosaic, while exquisitely
colored brown glass chandelier pendants hang over the dining table.
Photos: Courtesy of Casa Forma
The art apartment is a bright and colorfully decorated small apartment design, which was the creative vision of Arent&Pyke, located in Sydney, Australia. Central to the design approach was the understanding of working with young families which we the designer’s do often in their practice. They responded with a palette and design that created a fresh, bold and brave stylistic and practical harmony. A carefully balanced palette of materials starting with a solid neutral base for major furnishing items which was layered with decorative objects to nurture a sense of intimacy and well-lived-in connection with the space. Finally a significant installation of Australian artworks from Artbank celebrates the legacy of treasured objects which we accrue over our lifetimes and the much-loved tradition of passing art through family generations.
As a multi-disciplinary and award-winning interior design practice, Arent&Pyke honor a simple yet clear vision – to enrich people’s lives by creating beautiful and cohesive spaces to which they feel emotionally connected. With a focus on residential interiors, Arent&Pyke’s body of work is testament to our ability to clearly articulate our vision. A palette of natural materials and a sensitive and sophisticated use of color and lighting typify our practice’s work that draws upon the combined experience of not just the team, but the artisans and suppliers with whom we collaborate. We are influenced by realms such as travel and literature, and have an unwavering appreciation for design in all its guises, a respect of architecture and acute attention to detail.
This bold graphic print wallpaper is by Anna Spiro, from Porters Paints.
Photos: Scott Hawkins