Syte Architects balance Edwardian base with contemporary joinery in Tenby Mansions
The clients asked Syte Architects for an overhaul of a handsome Edwardian mansion block, typical of London’s Marylebone neighborhood. The brief called for open living spaces and snug bedrooms.
“We were interested to explore the notion of layering two design compositions within the same environment. The Edwardian interior stands tall, static and intact (with all of its historic detailing) whilst the contemporary joinery insertions travel through the flat at their own lower level. These insertions take the form of walnut joinery blocks that drift across the flat like islands. On a functional level these blocks contain all storage requirements, but it is in the way they press themselves through walls that hints at ongoing connections between rooms. The flat’s layout has been reorganised to create one large room across the street facing side to contain the living, dining and kitchen activities. The historic chimney breasts were retained and stand free in the space, picked out in dark polished plaster with black granite inlays. These same finishes adorned the kitchen units and island, like sentinels in the largest room. The walnut joinery blocks are all orientated in the same direction and lead to the flat’s interior. All three bedrooms face the quiet rear courtyard. These joinery blocks are carved in different ways to create dressing tables and bathroom basin recesses. Large format oak herringbone flooring runs throughout the flat as a central unifying detail,” explained Syte Architects