“Almost Loft” Apartment: Sober European Minimalism Against Industrial-Style Background
Helen, a photographer
Vitalis, engaged in auto business
Number of rooms: 2
Metric area: 70 m²
Ceiling height: 3 m
Floor number: 3
Three years ago Vitalis and Helen moved in their “almost loft” apartment. They were allured by well-developed infrastructure, good ecology and sparse development of the neighborhood. The latter is situated in the north-west of Moscow, right behind the Moscow Ring Road, and was designed in its time under the rules of scientific urbanism.
Renovation process lasted for almost a year. The lodging had no load-bearing walls – just a few pylons and other technical elements, such as downcomers, implying an assumed typical zoning. As a result, all the spaces were re-allotted. Plans of layout and interior design were developed by an architect Alex Nikolashin. The hosts entrusted their living space to Alex on the advice of their friends and after examining his works in a cottage village of the Crimea.
The guys visioned their future apartment as open as possible. True, the idea of loft in the proper sense of the word had to be given up, as the bedroom was isolated with a glass partition. Still the interior is penetrated with industrial aesthetics, which perfectly blends with oak parquetry used for decorating the utility block in the entrance hall.
The central space incorporates a lounge, a home office and a cooking zone, which makes it open and functional despite the relatively small metric area.
Sobriety showing in use of geometrical shapes and smooth surfaces, typical of European minimalism, is mixed with features of industrial style. For example, concrete slabs on the ceiling were left in their original state, just covered with special solution containing varnish.
Almost every furniture unit, including white built-in closets, a sofa, chairs, arm-chairs and shelves, was gotten from IKEA.
Lamps giving soft point light are a well-priced and useful finding of Vitalis: within a few years neither bulb was changed on theatre spotlights. The style concept is maintained by Zehnder radiators and iron curtain rods.
An iron beam was appointed as a rest for the table and a table top by IKEA serves as a working surface.
Visual boundaries of the united space are set up by geometry — a corian bar, which was custom-made by “New Project” company from the architect’s drawing.
In the light of illumination black glossy tiling and a white kitchen set glitter and sparkle with the preset color.
Wired into the ceiling under organic glass are LED strips, which make it possible to select the lighting of preset color.
An under-sink cabinet unit and sanitary porcelain are made by Ideal Standard. Tiling — Rim.
Glass partitions separating the bedroom and the bathroom from the public zone are made by Nayada.
The original plan for the bedroom wall was a graffito with views of afterdark Monte Carlo, but in the end the hosts pitched upon a more neutral version — corkwood.
The bedhead and the wall are also decorated with multi-colored illumination.
A director’s chair is Helen’s gift to Vitalis.