Overhauling an older building for new residence can be a better choice than constructing from scratch -- not only does it reduce waste and is potentially 'greener', there's a lot more character to these structures too. In this renovation of a nineteenth-century apartment block in Wroclaw, Poland, local firm 3XA used some simple but effective design ideas to help maximize the small square footage that was available.
First, to enlarge the functionality of the space, the firm decided to add some extra partitions and zones into what was otherwise an open space. They took advantage of the 12-foot-high ceilings by inserting an extra mezzanine level for sleeping, which is accessible via an open staircase that doubles as shelving. Inexpensive particle board has been used, which contrasts with the original moldings on the ceiling and brick walls.
A closed-off volume has been inserted near the entry door, which houses the bathroom and some storage for clothes and other belongings, which are shielded with gauzy curtains. This volume also creates an entry corridor -- as delineated by the checkered tiling -- as well as something for the loft to sit upon.
The addition of a 69-square-foot sleeping loft not only augments the space, but also provides a more private, darker place to rest. Nevertheless, there's still attention paid to the lighting design here to ensure it doesn't feel like a cramped space.
Remnants of charming, old details remain, such as this set of doors.
The living room itself is multifunctional: there's a L-shaped sofa that's combined with a desk and office chair, making it a space for resting and working.
Around the corner from the lounge lies the kitchen, which has tall cabinets for storage and a small dine-in counter that visually separates the kitchen from the living room.
Rethinking and repurposing spaces in older buildings can be a challenge, but as one can see here, there's still plenty of advantages too. To see more, visit 3XA.