WORDS Joel Beath IMAGES Tess Kelly VIDEO NEVER TOO SMALL via Youtube
In a heritage listed building, this conversion by tsai Design utilises the high ceilings to create a calm, minimalist 50sqm apartment.
Set inside the heritage-listed Grand Hotel building in Melbourne CBD, the aptly named Small Grand Apartment has been meticulously transformed by the team at tsai Design into an open plan, minimalist space by the use of clever, multi-functional design.
“We set out to create a spare but generous and welcoming home for our client, celebrating the 1880s splendour of the building. First, we removed the half height partitioning walls to open the volume into an open plan kitchen and living-dining room. This ample new space allowed for flexible furniture configuration and garden views from our award-winning Drop Leaf Table, custom designed for this apartment. The fold-up dining table for two expands to six for entertaining when required,” explains Jack Chen from tsai Design.
The picturesque kitchen blends seamlessly into the living area, containing an 8m wrap around countertop that continues into a cleverly concealed bathroom.
“With countless eateries on the doorstep, our client wanted a kitchenette instead of a traditional kitchen. This meant we could provide ample storage, concealing appliances, and a full height pantry in the entryway keeping the home clutter free. Timber floors wrap up in a high kicker to warm the whites of the home; a cute concealed drawer houses the cat litter,” says Jack.
A custom-designed credenza forms both a TV cabinet and seating for dining in the living area whilst also supporting a bespoke drop leaf table, convertible between desk and dining table. All of this ensures that the apartment’s aesthetic is as clean as possible while maintaining flexibility.
The architects transformed the narrow, windowless kitchen into the bedroom. Working with the confines of this room – just 2.6 metres wide – the bulky ceiling was replaced with an elegant timber vaulted ceiling embracing the existing arch of the doorway. A pull-down queen size Murphy bed with a full height mirror borrows light and views and creates an expansive walk in robe.