THE WHITE HOUSE
Leinster Mews, W2
This achingly cool mews property was purchased by Rory Macpherson, founder of architectural firm Play Associates, from his parents, who had previously owned it for 15 years. Back then, the property was an ‘average’ traditional mews home circa 950 sq ft occupying the ground and first floors. With Macpherson’s magic, the house was totally and skilfully reconfigured, with a completely new layout adding a second floor and creating an additional 500 sq ft.
Macpherson says one of the biggest challenges was to retain the charm of a traditional mews house while creating something that felt light, spacious and open. “We managed this by fitting very large skylights along the rear roof. One is frameless and more than 2.5 metres long; when you look up, it appears almost open and forms part of a triple-height lightwell with a level of ‘walk-on’ glass,” he says. Macpherson and
his team at Play Associates also made the ground floor ceilings three-metres high and fitted a sweeping, open staircase with another skylight above, adding to the immense natural light. The project took a total of nine months.
Once the build was complete, Macpherson kept the internal exposed-brick walls but painted them a soothing white grey. He also fitted a bespoke kitchen in the same colour, and white washed the timber floors. Bespoke joinery and striking architectural additions included micro cement, laser-cut panelling, full-height doors on single hinges and a projector screen hidden in the ceiling. The property presented an excellent three-bedroom house with generous living and entertaining space and good-sized bedrooms.
The ground floor was undoubtedly the draw. Its open-plan design included a sleek living space, contemporary kitchen and room for dining.
There was also a guest WC and utility room.
The first floor was accessed by the stunning open staircase that included two large bedrooms and a bright study with a glass floor and ceiling.
On the top floor was the master bedroom with an en-suite bathroom and underfloor heating.
Cobbled Leinster Mews is arguably in one of Bayswater’s most desirable locations. Macpherson certainly thinks so. “I love the area. It’s a twominute walk to both parks, five minutes to Notting Hill and beyond to Holland Park, and 15 minutes to Oxford Street and Soho,” he says. “The Lancasters and Hempel developments are also either side of the property and so it’s a really exciting time for the area as a whole.”
View Play Associates on the Domus Nova Architecture Guide