Architecture: DC.AD, Duarte Caldas
Project Team: Catarina Mascarenhas
Text description provided by the architects. RGM 46 duplex apartment is a refurbishment project located in Lisbon, with an area of approximately 60m², with a small terrace on the roof.
On the proposed functional program there were included a living room, kitchen, bedroom and sanitary facility. The intervention starting point consisted in the spatial division between the social area and the private space of the apartment through the two existent floors.
The lower floor was released by the withdrawal of all the walls and existent obstacles, in order to give way to a single and wide space destined to the living room. For that, it was necessary to reinforce the apartment structure with a new structural system composed by beams and steel columns, which were left in plain sight and asserted themselves as the project theme.
The reinforcement structure, longitudinally, delimits two distinct spaces of the living room: one facing south, that benefits itself from the exterior terrace and the natural light provided from the main façade spans, and the other facing north, that communicates with the rear blind façade. Four different quadrants are delimited by the strategic placement of the column: the south room, divided in the sunset living area and the sunrise meal space; and a north functional space.
A new structure was introduced and attached to the north wall, which is constituted by an abstract panels line that integrates the new kitchen cabinets, storage area and the access to the staircase that allows access to the upper floor. The introduction of this new bulk seeks, on the one hand, solve with a single gesture the incorporation of all the kitchen functions, and, on the other hand, aims to provide to the space a single and continuous background. The gray panels along with the same color ceiling, defines, by the use of the color, a spatial distinction with the bright living area, emphasized by the several white tones of the surfaces and by the rhythm of the wood structure that marks the ceiling of the space. In order to control the relation between these two spaces it was created a semi-open metallic shelf that provides support to the kitchen and to the living room.
On the upper floor there is a suite designed in an open-space form. The space has a continuous floor and ceiling, although it is separated through the strategic position of furniture pieces that create different hierarchies of the space use. Two loose volumes were created and, through them, it is possible to move around. They also separate the bedroom space from the bath space.
The sanitary facility is on the sunrise side, with natural light and ventilation through the new span on the roof. This space can be closed by two pink acrylic panels, that create a semi-transparency and filter the colored light into the inside. The volume that separates this bedroom space includes a niche with a metallic sink and the inside faces coated with mirrors.
The main space of the room is characterized by the white and gray scale in different tones and textures. The bed is inserted in a niche with different heights headboards. From this space, it is possible to see the external terrace and the landscape reflected on the mirror of the wardrobe.
The electrical equipment and the decorative lamps are purposely highlighted in the black color, while the general lighting of the wall is invisible, white and harmless.
In general, the intervention intends to clarify the space, creating wide and communicative divisions among them through a flow and obstacle-free circulation. The subtle variations among the spaces are meticulously made through the design, furniture position and the careful utilization of colors.