A Sioufi Memoir / by Karim Nader

Located in a rich neighborhood that is punctuated by mid to late 20th century buildings, the apartment benefits from half of the spectacular curve of this corner block. In order to avoid all historical pastiche while preserving the spirit of the space, the renovation removes all what is unnecessary in the internal partitioning of the apartment thus liberating a cross ventilated vista from the master bedroom all the way to the living area. In between, the dark zone that once was the corridor of those famous typologies becomes a family living at the heart of the house, benefiting from a double volume to an attic transformed into a children play area. It is connected all the way to the maid’s room on the same floor and kitchen below via a hidden staircase. The kitchen, in a typical contemporary move, loses its enclosure and opens up as an extension of the living/dining area, visible in its white minimalism even from the entrance.

On the floors of the apartment, a solid oak herringbone parquet floor unifies the whole space in a further gesture of openness of space. Blatt Chaya (traditional cement tiles) punctuate the bathrooms in a colorful tour of the different areas of Lebanon in which they were initially found. As for the original wooden windows, shutters, and internal doors, they are all restored to their initial condition and color that merges with the off-white of the existing elevation and the newly added floor finish.

The final result, a memoir of sorts, seeks to maintain the existing feelings that were still present in the relic to be restored while projecting the space into 21st century agendas of openness, naturalness and clarity. The photoshoot, a stage setting of mid-century paraphernalia features the iconic furniture of Gio Ponti, Marcel Breuer as well as a whole setup of the home appliances, fashion, travel items, toys, books, and sport items of the period.

Project Status: Built. 

Designed by Karim Nader and BLANKPAGE Architects. 

Project Management by Karina el Hage.

Furniture by Platform.

Photography by Marwan Harmouche