Located in Barcelona’s up and coming Poble Sec neighbourhood, the challenge in this project was to turn a dark compartmentalised apartment into a modern pied à terre. Our Swiss client, working a corporate power job, was looking for a home that transpired a laid-back atmosphere. We developed an open, fluid sequence of spaces and functions with an unobstructed view from one end of the apartment to the other to create a calming retreat and the ideal antidote for a fast-paced life.
We encountered the typical apartment layout: a long tube with light coming in from two ends. In order to design a generous living space we created an imaginary diagonal that divides the floor plan into a functional, open triangle. With a set of structural beams we freed the floor plan and secured the wide spanning beams of the ceiling. We decided to use oak parquet laid out in Hungarian point and give the apartment an effortless elegance. Thus creating a warm base to build on.
We made the kitchen the heart of the home, placing it at the centre. Two blocks, one against the wall, the other in the middle, to house all functions. The fridge, integrated into the bathroom block and painted in the color of the walls, almost disappears. A row of open shelves is situated in the corner for everyday storage. Whereas the fronts are in stainless steel, the work surfaces and sides are covered in white marble, adding to the kitchen an industrial chic. The extractor is integrated into the lower ceiling to avoid obstructing the views.
Slightly raised by one step, the main idea for the bedroom is to be able to open it up through three door panels, allowing the owner to either be more enclosed or more connected to the open space.
The curtain, hiding a small wardrobe selection and the large window of the adjacent bathroom, creates an intimate atmosphere in combination with the lowered ceiling.
The walls were covered with plasterboard with rounded corners to enhance the softness and fluidity of the space. It does not cover the full height to leave the original brickwork exposed. Whilst the plasterboard is painted in a light grey, bricks and ceiling were painted white. The original vaulted ceiling was left exposed for most of the open space. Only in the centre, above the kitchen, the ceiling was lowered to house the air-con unit and create a division between front part, kitchen area, and back part.