Step inside the penthouse suite. This is an apartment overlooking the River Thames in London, with great views of the city and all along the river. The couple who own the home were looking to refurbish for contemporary living.
Both of them work in finance, and as is always the way with demanding jobs such as theirs, they are often away traveling around the world on business. Accustomed to staying in luxury hotels, they wanted to give themselves the same level of comfort and style in their own home.
But that’s not to say this home mimics that of a neutral toned, copy paste hotel suite. There are plenty of vibrant finishes, thought out elements of home, and spaces with fun personality too.
With a backdrop as powerful as the London landscape, it was an easy decision to open the home up towards the view. This was one of the goals from the remodeling, and they brought interior design specialists from Residence to work on the project.
There were many challenges during the project. The first of which was about opening up the hallway doors. To create that open space and to enhance the view, the original design centered around big glass doors. But for safety standards, it’s important that the doors are sturdy and strong enough to be fire rated, which is not so easy with that much glass.
What was also a challenge was to find handles and metal fixings that meet the fire standards, without being too institutional. Working closely with an ironmongery supplier, they were finally able to get a set of handsome handles for the door that also withstand fire rating regulations.
Another area which received much attention to detail was the bookshelf. Many parts of the home feature bespoke cabinetry, including this particular corner found in the living room area.
It’s a full floor to ceiling space for storage; it has areas for books and displays, but also drawers to keep things tidy.
The ladder can slide all the way along, attached on a rail near the top.
In the bedroom you can find more examples of cabinet design, where these shelves have been fitted with LEDs for extra lighting options and to make the area sing out.
This is one of the bedrooms in the house. From the doorway, you have a dressing room area with mirrors along the whole breadth of the wall. Mirrors are a good way to make the space feel wider, but also as they are situated just across from the wardrobe, a handy place to be.
Just a few steps divide the bedroom from the bathroom. This was one of the most exciting elements of the project; a complete overhaul of the area that opened up a previously compartmentalized space and turned the bathroom into an open bedroom and bathroom.
Walls and floor materials match similar colors on the bedroom side of the room, and the blue accents in the bathroom side have been complemented with the soft furnishings on the bed.
The freestanding bath tub sits in the middle of the room, creating a feature element in the bathroom. Lighting regulations are particular for the bathroom, because water and electricity obviously do not mix. In order to create a well lit focal point in the center of the room, the design needed a bit of ingenuity.
To combat regulation issues, there are three fiber-optic chandeliers above the bathtub that do not use electrics. They are lit from a projector housed outside of the room, so it means that there are no electrics above the bath tub. It’s a safer alternative, and also created a mesmerizing effect when lit up – they can change color too for bathtub relaxation enjoyment.
If you like this bath tub, you need to check out the master bathroom.
It’s one of the most stunning features of the house. The feature lighting adds emphasis to the shape and grandeur of the setting. And what a view!
Stephen Dick, from Residence, filled me in on why out of all the rooms in the penthouse, the bathroom is his favorite.
It’s a stunning room to see when you walk in, with feature lighting accentuating architectural features and finishes around the room. The luxurious whirlpool bath is a fantastic focal point and is elevated higher to enjoy views across London.
There are rich and interesting finishes throughout the room, but through a process of reduction the details and use of those finishes was simplified so that the room didn’t feel busy.
The bathroom is such an important room as it’s usually where the day starts and ends, so a calm space is essential, and attention was paid to every detail to ensure this. The macassar vanity unit is a sleek design with a one-piece Corian top with integrated basins, the shower area is all clad in stone slabs and with a single slab for the base, and the tiled floor is in a custom size to avoid any small cuts. The TV is unobtrusive, the brassware is a simple contemporary design, and the shower enclosure is totally frameless.
The attention to detail pays off hugely in the overall feel of this room.
Another big issue with the project was to make sure they could incorporate sufficient air conditioning into all of the spaces. If you want a space to look and feel luxury, many of the elements that run the operation have to be hidden away from view but also easily accessed for maintenance, so the control panel areas are hidden away well; tucked behind walls and cabinets.
The kitchen area maintains this sleek look too, with hidden cupboards and built in wine cooler. It looks polished and refined.
The home owners are enthusiastic about their new renovation – one of the main talking points for every guest is the powder room!
The powder room was a great success too. The black glass washbasin is set off against jewel-like glass mosaic tiles to create a wonderful contrast. Following on from the basin so many other fittings and accessories had to be black to ensure a coherent look, including the WC and the hand towels. I’m not sure if anybody liked the black toilet roll though!
The bathrooms in this home really stand out as something special, with some great ideas and fascinating designs. I’m not sure which one I enjoy more, but I think the open bedroom with its connecting bath tub really meet their mark on the goal for creating a luxury space. So too is the free standing bathtub overlooking the river views – simply splendid.