Location_Via Teodosio, Milan
Service_Preliminary and executive project, building site direction
Milan, district of Città Studi, a ground floor of a tree-lined avenue.
The project concerns the radical transformation, with limited economic means, of an office into a residential loft, capable of being an adequate setting for the dynamic life of a young advertiser.
The large internal spaces, located almost in continuity with the street, have been freed from the old glass partitions, creating a very large living area, especially compare with residential standards of Milan. In the client’s wishes, such a living space had to be able to host home concerts and film screenings, functions that could also be set up open-air, thanks to a lush courtyard that embraces the back of the building.
Given the dull and anonymous character of the former offices, the construction “crust” was stripped from walls and floors. Powerful inserts were conceived in pursuit of a domestic brutalism, capable of not diminishing the aesthetics of the existing twentieth-century building, but rather reflecting a certain patina of the years.
The house is designed as a single fluid open space: instead of a door between the living and night areas, a tunnel was created, covered on all four sides in anthracite-colored resin. Hallway to bathroom and laundry room, the tunnel generates a spatial contraction, almost like an artistic installation, which effectively divides the two spaces of the house without the need for a door.
The living area is dominated by an existing structural portal, whose reinforced concrete has been stripped out.
A sculptural cast-in-place reinforced concrete kitchen interacts with it. The monolithic block rises from the ground with typical walls of the built-in kitchen, but in addition to the counter it also includes the sink and the backrest which in the upper part becomes a bar counter overlooking the dining area. Four white lacquered Ikea cabinets organize the undercounter, while a series of wood board shelves and a free-standing Smeg refrigerator complete the kitchen equipment.
The floor is covered with a parquet made up of large brushed oak planks with a particular parallel staggered installation. As a skirting board, a raw steel plate laid horizontally contributes to the industrial character of the interior design.
The bathroom, among all rooms, is the one that most reflects the Milanese identity mentioned previously.
Seminate flooring, diamond-cut white ceramic tiles and above all the presence of an old freestanding cast iron bathtub, just restored by an amateur.
This early twentieth century tub, placed near the window, is a domestic antidote to the frenzy of working life, an object dedicated to slow gestures that free us from the automatisms of daily routine, so that the home is much more than a machine à habiter.
The result is a pop setting that for once renounces the smooth elegance of a minimal bathroom, pursuing a dialogue with twentieth-century Milanese styles.