Project: Marylebone Apartment Full Refurbishment
Architects: Proctor & Shaw
Status: Completed 2019
Location: London Borough of Westminster
Photography: Stale Eriksen
Text by Proctor & Shaw
Don’t Move, Improve! 2020 – Shortlisted
South London based architects Proctor & Shaw have completed the full interior renovation of an apartment in a period block in Marylebone, London. The brief for this Marylebone apartment full refurbishment required 2 bedrooms with ensuite facilities and an open plan kitchen, dining, living space that made the most of every square inch of the property’s modest footprint.
“The top floor of the existing building had been rebuilt following bomb damage during the war”, explained architect Mike Shaw, “which meant the existing spanning concrete structure allowed a complete reconfiguration of the non-load-bearing internal walls to suit the client’s aspirations for the space.” The beautiful cantilevered communal stair in terrazzo from this earlier 1950s refurbishment also set the tone for a crafted approach rich in material texture.
The chosen design solution incorporated a series of fixed furniture interventions that structured a newly orientated layout maximising every square inch of the property’s modest 75 msq footprint. Ensuite bedrooms are organised behind a finely detailed full height timber profiled screen wall to allow a consolidated street-facing living space running the full length of the apartment. The wall incorporates all storage and service requirements for the apartment, including kitchen appliances and hanging cupboards, resulting in a highly efficient plan.
Lye-washed batten profiles modulate the organising wall to create a subtle texture enlivened by the characterful grain of the Douglas Fir timber. Flush finished frameless doors and discreet machined handles are concealed in the timber profiles adding a sense of craft and delight to the touch. The screen is complemented by 5m long full length solid Douglas Fir floor boards, both supplied by Dinesen, where the vertical rhythm of the screen and seamless floor emphasise a sense of height and depth to the space.
The main living space is anchored at each end with bespoke wall to wall furniture units in ultra-matt clear sealed dark grey through-coloured MDF, topped with black pitted bespoke concrete worktops. At one end kitchen cabinetry, the other a cantilevered wall bench unit with integrated drawers, these bolder elements reinforce the lightness of the timber screen and frame a quartet of existing street-facing sash windows.
Simply finished bedrooms with flush faced built-in hanging cupboards and bespoke Douglas fir bedside cabinetry are each accompanied by ensuite shower rooms, finished in a seamless microcement finish to walls, floor, ceiling and cabinetry to create a sensuous cocoon like atmosphere. Bespoke concrete vanity units with integral sinks and brushed stainless steel fixtures feature in both spaces alongside through-coloured MDF lined cabinetry. Proctor & Shaw also designed bespoke loose furniture for the space, including an eight person dining room table with a thin framed powder coated steel base finished with a matt black MDF table top to match fixed furniture cabinetry.
Ultra matt dark grey through-coloured MDF cabinetry is surface finished in microcement to blend wall and cabinetry. This is again complemented by the rich elegance of matching bespoke dark pitted concrete vanity units with integral sinks.
Attention to detail in the craft of the black concrete kitchen worktop is celebrated through the seamless integration of backsplash and basin, bespoke matt black finished Quooker boiler water tap, flush fitted black induction hob and colour matched flush wall sockets.
Appliances are built in throughout, and services integrated to provides optimum performance and comfort without impacting on the visual qualities of the space.
Existing and Proposed Layouts
The inefficient existing one bedroom, one bathroom layout is reorganised to accommodate two bedrooms each with ensuite facilities, along with a generous open plan kitchen, dining, and living space. A series of fixed furniture interventions restructure a new layout maximising every square inch of the property’s modest 75 msq footprint.
At Proctor & Shaw all projects are developed into a 3D digital model to test ideas and to ensure that clients have a clear understanding of the design intent. These drawings capture the final design prior to the Technical Design phase. All of the key elements are now in place; materiality, layout, and lighting strategy are all expressed.
1. Floor/timber screen supplier: Dinesen
2. Concrete worktops: Forma Studios
3. Shower room finishes: London Microcement
4. Cabinetry finishes: Valchromat
5. Sanitaryware: Lusso Stone
6. Lighting suppliers: Viabizzuno, Accessori
7. Automist sprinkler system: Bluelight
8. Quooker tap bespoke finishing: Yardley Bespoke