The essential element of the brief for this project was to sensitively extend this elegant late Georgian property in order to create additional living spaces for the clients. The property, overlooking Holland Park in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, was built in the 1850s and sits within the Kensington Conservation Area.
As you enter the upper ground floor the patina of time and wear is evident on the original stone stair that connects the entrance with the first floor. The period features of these primary reception rooms have, where possible, been reorganised but maintained and restored. Elements that were missing or damaged beyond repair, such as the elaborate cornice and detailed panelling, were painstakingly and seamlessly reintroduced. The modern interventions at this level include the addition of glass and metal doors to divide the kitchen and study area from the main vertical circulation space while allowing natural light to permeate the stair, and the rear extension creating the picture window to the garden.
Ascending to the first floor, most of which is dedicated to a piano noble double fronted salon style sitting room, elegant views out along Phillimore Place abound. Antique furniture is mixed with modern pieces, including textures of velvet in a palette of rose and rust. A twinkling offset pair of 1950’s Murano Glass chandeliers combine to create a rarefied and inviting space.
The major intervention of this scheme, however, begins to reveal itself as you descend to the lower ground floor. The house originally spread over six floors comprised 5166.68 square feet (480m2).The newly excavated basement was dug to create an extra 157 square metres for a swimming pool, making the house nearly 637 square metres across seven floors. There is also a concealed lift, discretely concealed in the fabric of the upper floors connecting all seven floors, and a three metre by fourteen metre swimming pool with precisely designed light wells and a Japanese garden open to the elements.