The Porto-based architecture studio Fala Atelier has taken upon themselves the task to transform a small flat nestled in a 19th century Lisbon building into what we like to call a nordic design paradise.
The apartment is located on the first floor of a late-19th-century housing block overlooking the Tagus river.
The task? Transforming this centennial apartment into a two-bedroom holiday home!
In order to remodel the layout and make the best use of the 60-square-metre floor plan, Fala Atelier started by adding a gently curved wall. Thus creating a separation between the communal areas from the more private spaces.
Five hand-painted doors, each in a different shade of blue, punctuate the curved wall, leading to the bathrooms, two bedrooms and stairwell.
Fala Atelier created a range of furniture pieces from different types of marble resting atop metal frames – including a kitchen unit, side table, shelving and chairs.
The main area with the living and dining rooms, as well as the kitchen were tiled in marble, while the bedroom floors are covered in ash plywood panels.
Why marble? “Marble is a very affordable material in Portugal and as such we used it very often against the abstract white background because it creates a very intense contrast,” said the studio co-founder Felipe Magalhães.
What we cannot forget is that before all the designing and construction work began, this small flat didn’t even have what we now consider a given: an interior bathroom! However, by adding a curve wall, the architects made way for a toilet and shower room.
By getting rid of the old outdoor bathroom, the architects reclaimed a small patio area at the back of the property. Accessible from the living area and one of the bedrooms, this outdoor space has a cement-covered floor and walls.
“The new courtyard-like space provides an exterior addition to the living room, natural but unexpected for an apartment on a second storey,” said Magalhães.
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