Anyone who has ever lusted after the open-plan spaciousness of an old industrial building will love this apartment in Amsterdam. From the canal side there is just a big double garage door that marks the entrance to a building that dates back to the beginning of the 17th Century. Entering through the garage you come to a ‘sitting pit’ with a home cinema. Loving it so far? The apartment is mostly built in the former courtyard without any windows, but it has been designed by Standard Studio with a new inner courtyard to bring in the daylight and provide outdoor space. All of the rooms look out on to this light-well and extra big roof-lights also provide more daylight. The result is a light, bright apartment that is very private even though it’s situated in the city centre. The best of both worlds.
The Design Details
- Roof-lights that flood the open-plan space with light just where it’s needed. Especially over the kitchen island.
- Structural supports that have been cleverly incorporated into the design providing a sense of separation between the kitchen, dining, and living spaces. Painting them black to match the window frames, doors and kitchen cabinets makes them look even more cohesive.
- The polished concrete floor throughout is not only practical but looks stunningly beautiful.
- The large kitchen island incorporates the hob so that the cook does not have her back to her guests. It also incorporates a wooden chopping board.
- The marble of the worktop has been continued up the wall finishing in a decorative shelf. This is an ideal place to put well-used items or decorative pieces without the kitchen becoming overly fussy. Without it the entire look would possibly be too clinical.
- I love the symmetry of the kitchen cabinets, sink and even that black enclosed pipework. But then, I am a symmetry nut.
- The chunky wooden dining table is in complete proportion to the vastness of the space. A regular table would look insignificant and lost.
- Layered rugs delineate the sitting area and provide a softness underfoot.
- Open shelving separates the living space from the office space without cutting it off completely or interrupting the flow of light.
- The inner courtyard is visible from all of the main rooms, not only allowing light to flow in, but also fresh air.
- A giant potted bamboo in the courtyard provides greenery and also connects it to the trees outside.
- Soft rugs break up the expanse of concrete where they are needed.
- The privacy is so complete, that even the bath could be placed in front of the windows.
- The courtyard has been kept deliberately plain with just one plant and some rattan chairs. More would look untidy from inside.