Years ago at the beginning of my career as an architect, I worked for a small developer who bought this whole building to reform it. The financial crisis of 2008 thrived to a change in the way this investment was going to unfold. The owners decided to sell by parts without performing any intervention.
Years later, with a new professional path and as a Partner of the September Arquitectura Team, those who had been my bosses got in touch, it is seen that one of the apartments had not been sold because it had an old rental and now that it was free. It was time to transform it. I will confess that that call made me especially excited, not only because it is appreciated that you continue to trust the work we do, but also because the apartment was one of those that, despite being totally run-down and full of junk, had a soul.
Located in the Gràcia neighborhood, in a quiet passageway with a pedestrian exit to one of the few green parks in the area, the 105 m2 apartment built and located in a real third, breathes warmth. The building dates from 1900 and although it has been subsequently renovated, it maintains that charm of hydraulic floors and brick walls. You go up the tight stairs, where the aroma of a century of history is present in every corner and upon entering the apartment, surprise! That door with padded cladding, very like my grandmother’s house, high ceilings with graceful coffered ceilings and fragmented spaces, greet us. The floors make so much belly, that it makes you think twice where you want to set your step.
The first thought that came to our mind was to respect the original elements from the flat. Everything that would have survived since its inception, keep it. And everything added… extract it. A job to bear and maintain the honesty of the construction system and its original details. The effort falls on defragmenting the floor without losing its essence, for this a master wall is lowered, thus unifying the rear spaces of the floor, intended for the day area, while the part of the main facade is practically intact. The final program includes three bedrooms, two of them are queen size, two full bathrooms, a small laundry room and a living room with an open kitchen. All spaces flow between them, without a sensation of tightness. The warmth of the Barcelona light enters in the morning through the rooms, which enjoy a privileged view to the Mediterranean sea, while the afternoon sun bathes the dining room.
Materiality is emphasized as the main resource, trying to rescue those ceilings composed of ceramic revolving beams and metal beams, the walls are peeled to leave the work seen. Unfortunately the floor is impossible to rescue, the large bowls show the need for a great structural reinforcement and the risk of affecting it during the demolition process is too high, so a natural parquet is chosen that enhances the natural quality of the house. The bathrooms are covered with porcelain tiles in a 10x10cm format, the largest main bathroom is dressed in green, while the secondary, smaller one, plays with the same format, but in beige. All rooms are bathed in natural light and connected through the large hall that maintains those high-rise doors and colored glazed glass, which are already difficult to find.
The kitchen becomes the main protagonist, it is organized in a U shape, creating a large bar that communicates with the living room. It follows the philosophy of the rest of the design, texture and color, oak wood for the tall units and dark green lacquered for the base units, in this way a leading element is achieved, which integrates perfectly with the rest of the spaces.
Finally, there is the entire Home Hunter Team and the collaboration of Somos Nido, who decorate the apartment with amazing furniture elements, paintings from local artists and warm colored fabrics. Architecture and decoration come together, creating a home. When you enter the house, you are invaded by that feeling of comfort, so calming, that it invites you to stay forever.