Palace Gate, W8
The problem with living in an architecturally significant house is how to make it a home and not a museum. Obviously it is important to pay homage to the building’s design but if one keeps a strict adherence to it, it may not suit modern lifestyles. Fortunately the owners of this flat in an important Art Deco building designed in 1939 by Wells Coates managed to strike the right balance.
The steal of this triplex apartment home is an original magnificent curved staircase that links the double-height sitting room to the upper floors. Retained too is the large sash window, as are the railings on the mezzanine level. Cleverly, the owners have used this space to install a dining area adjacent to the kitchen. Genius!
Throughout the flat there are little touches such as the use of chrome accessories that give a hint of Gatsby-era glamour without slavishly following art deco’s design rules. However, the colour scheme was relatively neutral, even monochrome, to allow the building itself to take centre stage.
In fact, the flat exudes glamour. The lavish bedrooms, the fresh flowers, the fine linens and buttoned upholstery come together to form a flat which is elegant without being overly formal. It’s a difficult look to get right but fortunately, these owners seemed adept at getting the design balance right.