Viewport Studio / Central London Flat
“This central London flat belongs to an extended family of several generations from South East Asia, who regularly visit London for work and pleasure. It could be used by two families staying for a two week holiday or just two adults in London for a few days of work. Therefore their brief to us was to create as flexible a space as possible that could accommodate a variety of functions, and be simple in design.
Our starting point was to see how we could reinstate the first floor living room back to something of its originally intended proportions so that the three tall arched french windows at the front could be restored and the lovely terrace with its wrought iron railings be brought back into use.
Then we wanted to make use of the height of the space (4.2 metres) so we included an additional mezzanine bedroom/study over the open plan kitchen, which could be closed off with a translucent polycarbonate folding screen – a large one opening on to the main living space, and a much smaller screen looking over the staircases at the back. When open, there are views from the front right through to the back bedrooms. At the same time, the spaces can be closed off with a large floor to ceiling pivoting door so that people can come and go with a level of privacy. The back bedrooms and bathrooms were rationalised and refurbished with new finishes and storage units.
The finishes are simple – oak floors and joinery, and white painted plaster walls – so that it can suit the tastes of all the visitors. Although the feel of the flat is now very contemporary, (there were few original features left in the flat when we started work) the sense of an elegant Victorian drawing room has been partly restored by the reinstatement of its proportions.
The private spaces at the rear of the flat are simple, calm and suited to the clients’ needs.”
Photography by Michael Franke