This home evoked a strong sense of nostalgia in us – the warm and gentle kind of nostalgia. We also understood that our client had gone through pains to attain this old flat in a landed property, which was the most unusual. Two detached houses, sitting in the same compound of land, was split into 4 separate residential units. Each resident would basically take up either the first or second floor of either house. With such peculiarity and distinction from other homes, we felt a strong sense of responsibility to honour and retain some roots of the apartment. We wanted to rejuvenate the interior as naturally as possible without draining the character and charm of the home’s exterior and drowning out its history.
In line with this mission set, we still had to make some changes to enhance the space and make it lighter and brighter. A segment of the wall at the staircase landing from the ground floor was hacked with careful precision, and the wall facing the balcony was also taken away to enable as much light as possible.
The essence of the home was retained– and perhaps the most apparent characteristic of it were its vintage window grilles, of which were the most uncommon and charming. The walls were kept simple without any drastic colour changes to elevate the lightness and expanse of the apartment. Instead, the upper half of the walls in the dining hall were scraped to expose its original brick layer, and it was scrubbed with a fresh coat of white. Painting it softened the contrast between brick and plaster, but yielded a new level of texture and character to the space– also an ode to the heritage of the building that would house yet another generation of inhabitants.