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The Multiple Frames Apartment
Design: Panagiotis Papanikolaou
Photo credits: Panagiotis Papanikolaou
Location: Neapoli I Athens
Size: 76 sqm
The apartment is located in an elegant 1960’s apartment building in the neighborhood of Neapoli, in the center of Athens. The objectives of the design intervention were to deal with the compartmentalized plan and poor lighting in the entrance and circulation spaces, while giving the apartment a second life that would let it retain its original identity and relationship with the era it was built.
The entrance space was unified with the living space, so the two of them could become a new bright unity, while the corridor walls were removed, thus creating a new transparent relationship between the living space, the circulation space and the kitchen. The freestanding bookcase works as a frame that allows visual contact with the kitchen and circulation space, while it hides the bathroom’s door, thus softening the boundaries between the public and private spaces of the apartment. Moreover, using the concept of void and solid, multiple frames are created both in the bookcase and the steel divider.
In terms of materiality, it was very important to retain and restore all the characteristic elements of the apartment that are a part of its relationship with the 1960’s, such as the herringbone parquet floor and terrazzos. The oak floor was restored and extended towards the entrance space in order to unify it with the living space, while the corridor’s terrazzo was restored and is now visible from all the apartment’s spaces, becoming a new reference point. Moreover, the kitchen floor was tiled with terrazzo tiles, that are a contemporary addition with clear references to the apartment’s original condition. Additionally, the kitchen and bathroom countertops from Kavala and Aliveri marble, along with the steel dividers are one more contemporary reference to the construction materials that were used when the apartment building was originally built.
The selected colour palette works in harmony with the existing wood and terrazzo floors, while it also highlights the new additions such as the freestanding bookcase and the steel dividers.