A maisonnette in the center of Kiev with a loft interior

August 7, 2013
Posted in Apartments


Vitaly – a businessman

METRIC AREA 380 sq.m
CEILING HEIGHT 3.3 – 4.6 m

Vitaly purchased the apartment in a house under construction on Grushevskogo street four years ago. There were several arguments in favour of the purchase: location in the center of Kiev, a view of the Dnieper, an impressive area (380 square meters), and opening onto the roof. The space designing took a year, the repair lasted two more years, and the owner moved into his apartment a half year ago.

Vitaly took the choice of the architect for his own apartment very seriously: a tender, in which about a dozen of bureau participated, was held. 2BGroup agency, which suggested a minimalist interior with the use of natural materials, won. Slava Balbek and a designer Olga Bogdanova were involved in the designing. A music fan Vitaly stated his requirements to the design of his future apartment originally: “I don’t listen to Allegrova, but I listen to Zemfira”.


A space with an open kitchen not divided into rooms was left on the upper level. The bedroom, a small cabinet, a place for the library, and the children’s room were located on the lower level. A spacious terrace was made a place for rest: one can take Jacuzzi, sunburn, and cook under the open sky here. The rest room for winter time with infra-red and dry sauna was located in a glass pavilion.


There are four toilet rooms in the apartment including an open bathroom in the host’s bedroom and two toilet rooms made in the form of containers, that is why special consideration was given to water supply system. Independent cleaning system makes it possible to use even water in the sink for drinking. Mainly natural materials were used in the finishing, and in some places concrete surfaces were left unaffected. An “Intelligent House” system manages all engineering in the apartment. Vitaly also saw about a good sound: special acoustic system creates stereo sound along the perimeter.


Brickwork on the wall was measured by millimeters for fitted kitchen Bulthaup, so that niches correspond to equipment perfectly. A big board for chalk drawing also has two invisible boxes. In one of concrete columns holes for wine bottles are distributed in order corresponding to the word “wine” in Braille letters.


Stairs were left on the wall on which emergency stairs must have been located in accordance with the house project. It feels like there is no flooring here due to highlighting and a dark transparent floor.



Adecorative wall was made from ordinary boards, which were fastened with each other at random and were painted white. The boards were fastened on both sides so that the wood doesn’t shrink and fracture. Decorative poufs Smarin in the form of stones have something in common with pebbles, which lie on the floor in an open bathroom downstairs.


The ceilings in the living-room as well as columns were left concrete. False widows on entresol perform a decorative function.


The lamp reminding of Luxo L1 lamp from Pixar’s logo weighs 500 kilograms. There are its reduced-scale analogues in the cabinet and in the children’s room. All light in the living-room is provided by this lamp and two projector lamps which stand on each side of the sofa.


An architect Slava Balbek presented an old photographic camera to Vitaly on a housewarming party.


A guest toilet and a small wardrobe room at the entrance to the apartment are made to order in the form of a container from the architect’s scratch. Some intriguing figures were encoded with a special font with which freight containers are usually numbered. For example, the first figure represents the total weight of brain of all people on Earth.


Live plants wall has built-in system of automatic watering which is carried out along the perimeter from top to bottom. The system is hidden under cacti at the top. Projectors which are operating constantly give required light to plants. The lath with which the stairs are fenced was planned to be glass, but this idea was given up: in the evening the glass would reflect artificial light and this would narrow the space. Symmetrical spacing of grid cells creates the atmosphere of order and free space.


Fireplace was installed on the upper level. Wooden floor was ordered in Holland. Vitaly wanted to lay the same floor downstairs, but its production had been stopped for that moment. Then the floor was ordered at Ukrainian producers, which did a good job none the worse.


A small cabinet, in which engineering drawings of the apartment were hung, was arranged on the lower level. A big aquarium with exotic fish and a soft sofa with linen upholstery were also placed here. The designers tried to adhere to natural materials and lack of attention-getting colours in all interior.


Laying on the wall is from blocks, surfaces of which are angled differently. Such peculiarity of blocks made it possible to lay them at random.


An open bathroom in the bedroom was one of Vitaly’s requirements. To take a bath looking at the Dnieper is a special pleasure for him. The floor here is pebbled. Decorative fasteners on the ceiling perform a function of a hanger. They were found at Italian designers from Adriani & Rossi. Most household necessities are hidden in niches inbuilt in the wall.


The toilet room in the bedroom is also made in the form of a container. There is also a wardrobe room here.



It was decided to leave brutal beams on the ceiling. The ceiling height on the on lower floor had to be reduced: all engineering system was hidden in the flooring between the upper and lower levels.


It is planned to arrange books in a dark wardrobe in the wall. Colored matrasses Roche Bobois were laid on the floor in the library instead of arm-chairs.


Vitaly’s seven-year old son sometimes lives with him, that’s why the children’s room with a separate toilet room and wardrobe room was arranged in a new apartment.


The architect’s familiar paintress painted the walls up with her left hand, so that to simulate carelessness of a child’s drawing. The stack can be transformed by inserting the shelves into different grooves. The carpet in the form of a ruler was found at Spanish designers GAN Rugs, and shelves in the form of running men were made from Slava Balbek’s scratches – their size had to be estimated very accurately, so that they don’t overlap other shelves, which are also inbuilt in the wall.


The terrace under the open sky is fenced with tough glass along the perimeter. In the afternoon one can sunburn on sun loungers or take Jacuzzi; and to make a fire on a special fire table in the evening. White arm-chairs Gervasoni shine in the evening.


Lamps on the grass are made in the form of strips which cut the space.


In cold weather Vutaly goes to sauna. There are two saunas in the apartment – infra-red and dry. There is cushioned furniture and a decorative table Smarin in the icebox, from which a view of the city opens. The picture on the wall is the work by a modern Ukrainian artist Nikolay Belous.




















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