A restoration project of a Victorian terraced house was undertaken by the London based practice of Flow Architecture in collaboration with Magrit Architecture.
The original 4 storey house, built in 1851, typifies the buildings in the upmarket area of Kensington in West London. The inherent problems with buildings of this era are the small enclosed spaces and lack of natural light. The infusion of daylight and the opening up of the interior became the aim and inspiration for this project. In order to achieve this, the entire interior required gutting and rebuilding. As the location is a conservation area with building specifications which must be adhered to, the facade was left intact.
The result is a spectacular contrast of eras, a groundbreaking conception of a renovation project. Upon entering, one discovers a space flooded with natural daylight through a central light shaft and interior ‘courtyard’, extending from an unframed skylight. A sculptural organic wooden structure lines the light well, creating the ‘Light Fall’ the heart and soul of the interior. A circular wooden staircase adds further warmth to the minimal aesthetic of the whitewashed walls and deceptive simplicity of the design.
The raised ground floor permits the creation of a newly built basement as the 5th level. More space has been added with the double height, glass faced rear extension, connecting the levels effortlessly and initiating an indoor/outdoor detail to the home.
The extension opens onto a paved terrace and a garden with a meandering pathway, a continuation of the soft curves seen in the interior.
A spectacular metamorphosis of the structure has brought this Victorian terraced home into the 21st century, creating a residence ideal for the contemporary urban lifestyle of the client.