Around the corner from me is a beautiful new townhouse. The owners, who shall remain nameless, hired my friend (and theirs) Torsten Schlauersbach and his partner, Annie Lo, of Haute Architecture to reimagine the interior architecture of this Robert A.M. Sterndesign. They started their firm just two years ago after both working for Norman Foster. I’ve seen it in person, and although these photos, shot for New York magazine, are beautiful, they don’t do it justice. It’s really perfection.
The staircase is made from precast concrete treads and fiberglass and anchored by steel. It looks spine-like and it serves as the building’s centerpiece. Lo and Schlauersbach worked out the geometry through some complicated math and then designed models and two large-scale mock-ups –including one using the actual materials. Their clients have two dogs, a baby, and another on the way, and their design was to have a super-minimal a space, that could still house their growing family. Almost all the wood paneling opens for storage space, and there are dozens of closets throughout the five floors.
The clients wanted their house to be as ecofriendly as possible, with “wellness” aspects incorporated into the design — like electromagnetic shielding to buffer radiation from wires and biophilic plantings to filter the air. There are also radiant-heat concrete floors. They are known for their attention to intricate, precise detailing — and for searching the globe for great design talent; the cabinets were made in Switzerland and the two-ton piece of stone for the master-bath vanity was found in Portugal and was SO huge it had to be brought in through the window. Torsten says;
“We wanted to build a versatile home that was open and light but one that could also be made private.”
They’ve succeeded, don’t you think?
(Photos Fisher Photography; via New York)