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Athens Greece
240m2
completed
2019

John Karahalios

Elisavet Plaini

Nikos Nakos

Epikyklos Technical Construction

The redesign of the two apartments took place in an urban three-storey building of the interwar period. The building is a typical example of early modern architecture. It has the unusual condition with façades in three sides, one of which overlooking a major street of the city.

The ground floor apartment was intended as a short term rental accommodation, whereas the second floor for private use as a vacation retreat. The structure of the apartments and their design elements were fully preserved, while the guideline for the intervention was the restoration of the spatial quality of the interiors.

The apartment of the second floor was the main focus of the renovation. It has interesting design elements and a special care in its materiality. The architectural aim was to showcase the sequence of the rooms and the overlapping theatrical frames that every space creates. This spatial condition was accentuated with the use of color according to function. Each color was inspired by the adjacent old terrazzo. The area of the kitchen and the bathrooms were already irreversibly changed from their original design and thus were treated with a contemporary architectural approach that was profoundly different from the existing dictionary of the apartment.

The ground floor apartment does not have any distinct decorative elements and some of its features have been altered from their original form through the years. The main concept was to strengthen the role of the central entrance hall as the core of the apartment. Every surface of all the rooms around that core was painted white. The target was to resolve the brightness problem of the apartment and to highlight the materiality of the floors. As a counterpoint to this condition the central hall was painted with vivid color inspired by its own terrazzo.

The color was a central choice for the exterior doors and windows and all the metal features of the building. The selection was based on the hue of the original central door of the apartment block, which is a small landmark of the surrounding urban space. This color serves as the only indication of the contemporary intervention, leaving the outer skin of the building in a temporary and transitional state. It is a condition where the natural decay, the imprint of the bullets from the 40s and the contemporary graffiti are evidence of continuity and dynamic coexistence.

Second Floor Apartment Plan

Ground Floor Apartment Plan

Color Diagrams

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