Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
NAPOLES apartment in Barcelona, Spain by BLOOMINT DESIGN
June 6th, 2018 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: BLOOMINT DESIGN
The goal was to transform this dark beaten down apartment into a welcoming flat for visitors from around the world.
Our Role: Interior design project, Project management, construction supervision, furniture & textile selection & purchase, selection & renovation of antic furniture, design of made to measure furniture exclusive for the project.
– In the center of the flat was a long, dark and kind of spooky corridor that would bring us to many closed dark rooms: 4 bedrooms, 2 tinny bathrooms, 1 wardroom, 1 kitchen, 1 living room and 1 dinning room. 2 patios that would give a bit of light, one at the end and one in the center, and 2 large windows in the living area looking on Napoles street. (See pics of before construction). Traditional Catalan architecture of the Eixample neighborhood: Long flats with little natural light.
– We decided to give this space a major make over & to search for the beautiful ancient details that give Catalan apartments their charm. You could not see it at first, but digging a little we found, old wall paper, the typical Catalan ceiling with bricks and wooden beams, old brick walls and a very cool iron boiler that we kept in the kitchen as decoration. The floors were brown hexagonal tiles, they are not the typical “baldosa hydraulica” that everyone dreams of over here, but we knew that with a little cleaning and polishing they would look quite nice.
– We opened up the kitchen, living and dinning room which are now one big space, with views on patio & the street. We opened as much as possible the corridor and even managed to fit in a third bathroom & a built-in cupboard for sheets, towels, tools and suitcases. The bathrooms are small so we used white metro tiles to give them more light and space, we reused the marble from the old kitchen to make shelves and sink counters. The kitchen is minimal and modern, simply white, with pine shelves and counter top and hand made green tiles from a provider we love in Mallorca “ Can Benito” .Our client fell in love with the blown glass lamps we had made to measure from our hotel Project in Mallorca, so we had similar ones made for here by “ Gordiola”.
– All the walls are painted in white, even the bricks to contrast with the pink brick ceiling and brown tilled floor, also to give light and more space. The artificial lighting was thought carefully, it was important to have enough light so it would not look like a dark apartment anymore, but without having cold led spotlights everywhere that give a hospital feel we chose to use a maximum of wall and decorative floor lamps to have a soothing and cozy ambience. All the light bulbs are led with warm lighting color and diffused glass to stay away from the aggressive lighting. The windows were all changed to double glass to avoid energy loss, but the inside doors were kept and as they were in really bad states, we painted them light blue to give a bit of color and personality to the rooms. The patios are now cement floors mixed with a pattern of recycled old traditional catalan tiles, provider “Pinar Miro”.
– The Furniture is a mix of made to measure elements designed by Bloomint and produced in Barcelona such as the dinning table, the buffet, the built in bench close to the window to admire the view or read with natural light close to the trees. We also purchased a pink sofa that blends in beautifully with the ceiling bricks from “innovation living” and then a mix of furniture from European providers and flee markets. The armchairs we bought very cheap in “Mercantic” flee market, close to Barcelona, they were bright orange, we found this lovely grey jungle textile to give them a fresh new look. The client also brought back very interesting pieces from Egypt, such as the carpets and curtains and statues from trips, she had an artist friend that painted some graffiti in the patios to give a bit of a modern touch, so there was a very accomplice collaboration between client & designers for this project.
– Construction team “Obres i serveis Habitat” were fast and efficient.
Our first concern was to understand exactly what our client wanted as for space, style, atmosphere, materials…. It is important for us to get to know our client to be able to create the perfect project for them. We kept the essence of the typical Barcelona flat adding touches from around Europe and Egypt with our design and the help of our client’s great taste!
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