A twenty-five year old high-rise condominium near Pike Place Market that was a series of small, dated rooms, several with large underutilized bay windows. The warren-like entry hallway ungraciously passed by the master bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom before arriving at the living room. Constraints to the design were that none of the utility chases and soffits, the plumbing drains, nor the front door location could be changed.
The owners no longer needed multiple bedrooms and baths. Instead, they desired a large flexible space that could be transformed to accommodate catered events and occasional overnight guests. When not entertaining, they wanted their home to feel casual, open, and airy.
By removing most of the partition walls, the experience of the home was changed to an open loft like space stretching 50 feet in length. Rather than using conventional doors, the space has the ability to transform itself with floor to ceiling pivoting panels. The panels are held magnetically in place to take on the appearance of a finished wall whether they are open or closed. Thus, guests feel that they arrive through an elegantly paneled entryway rather than a door-filled hallway. Additionally, a rolling panel allows the library to be closed off as a guest suite. Previously neglected opportunities offered by the building shell were expressed. The concrete columns and ceiling were exposed & cleaned. When it was discovered that there was a significant “wow” above the mural area, the design was modified during construction – adding a bent steel plate to hide the concrete imperfection & provide a custom lighting element for the living room mural. Each of the window bays gained a new function. In the living area a custom sofa and side platforms were built in. The dining area gained a large steel and wood sideboard. The third bay sports a desk for the home office with file drawers and computer equipment concealed in the backside of the kitchen cabinetry.
1st Place Remodel (with Hensel Design Studios)
Northwest Design Awards
21st Century Architecture: Apartment Living
by Beth Browne
Northwest Home + Garden