Transformation of a small apartment through the use of mirrored walls and the 1m2 staircase

By GVG Estudio, article by Tectonica

 

The assignment for this house was to convert a minimal apartment into a second home.
The house used to be part of a 1950s hotel on the beach in Biarritz. From the gallery there was a view of the sea and the spa.

 

The two cupboards in the kitchen were designed by GVG Estudio. They are made of brushed oak veneer, a rough material that contrasts nicely with the abstraction of the white space.

 

The house was little more than a living room with a connection to the gallery and an inaccessible cellar. With a total area of ​​55 m2, the architects concentrated on a few elements to make the most of this limited space. Space and light were optimally utilized and enlarged by installing mirrored walls and the 1m2 staircase from EeStairs, a spiral staircase that only requires 1m2. The selected accent colors give an impression of the golden age of Biarritz.

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The mirror walls and the 1m2 staircase are the two most important elements to optimally use and expand the limited space of 55 m2.

The plot of the apartment is in an excellent, history-rich location. Hotel Arroka stood here in 1953, where a bar was built a decade later. In the 1970s, the building was converted into housing. Today the building is divided. We focus on the apartment with a fantastic view but a clumsy interior space.

It was decided to extend the round arches on the facade of the building inwards. This creates a lot of light and space and the porch gives a beautiful, characteristic addition.

The mirrors are strategically placed to make the rooms appear visually duplicated. They cause spatial confusion and give the illusion of more space.

The furniture, especially the sofa and the blackout curtains, are intended to reflect the surf culture of the beaches of the Côte des Basques in 1957.

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“The apartment was to spend the weekends, nothing more. Family could, also unexpectedly, stay the night. When no one is sleeping, the space is devoted to yoga: the owner's hobby”.

“We have done several projects. Here we had to optically enlarge a small bedroom and bathroom. We decided to use a mirror. We chose the color pink because it matches the relaxed, 50s/60s Biarritz atmosphere.”

The stairs were a bottleneck. We didn't like a ladder, but a spiral staircase was too big. Then we came across the 1m2 staircase of EeStairs. This ingenious spiral staircase takes up only one square meter of space. In addition, ordering this staircase was very easy; after using the configurator some questions were asked about the dimensions and mounting, and after 6 weeks we had easily installed our own 1m2 staircase.

Click here for more information and the configurator of our 1m2 staircase