o house
achrafieh,beirut, lebanon

This 300 m² flat, on the top of an early 20th century Beiruti house in the hip heart of the city, has majestic proportions and refined architectural features. Ceiling height is close to five meters and the openings very generous. Two triple windows “à la venitienne” have elegant slender marble columns and delicate carpentry fretwork on the ogival arches. The two central reception rooms are richly appointed with an intricate plaster cornice, ceiling rosettes and period doors.

At the time of the refurbishment, the apartment had been recently insensitively renovated, and had too many doors and divisions as well as suspect finishes that obscured its inherent beauty.
nga first “liberated” the space, improving the circulation, removing doors and separations and replacing them as needed with drapery or useful shelving. The appropriate Byzantine approach of wall hangings and the superposition of floors covers helped solve the acoustic and room shape problems without the need of structural tampering, genuinely setting the character of the project.

The rich variety of colors and textures is countered by the modernist furniture, most of it custom made at low cost, and few draper antiques. Certain walls have surprising finishes: varnished copper leaf, matt cobalt blue pigment, gloss paint over rough render, or back lit cotton fabric and alabaster. These visual devices create unexpected vanishing points and singular perspectives, magnifying the stately layout and the kaleidoscopic play of light of this studious and bohemian gentleman’s lair


300 m² apartment


design consultant: Ana Corbero