- Article by Aleesha Callahan
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Recently shortlisted as a global finalist in the Sub-Zero & Wolf kitchen design awards, the Lumiere Penthouse project by David Selden Architect is a sprawling and luxurious execution across three floors. ADR chats to the architect to learn a bit more about the project.
Can you talk me through this project?
It’s a penthouse in the centre of Sydney that comprises the top three levels of the Foster + Partners-designed building, Lumiere. Our client purchased the apartment as a raw shell, so it was literally bare concrete with service risers and columns. The design brief was to create a luxe gentleman’s penthouse, with a refined elegance.
There are two fundamental design elements that bring all the levels together in the space. A three level corkscrew stair that wraps around the lift, which links the apartment vertically, and three levels of curved high-gloss anthracite-panelled walls which weave in and around the space, concealing the service risers and columns. They also conceal the private zones and secondary areas, such as the bathroom and laundry. The curved walls provide a fluid motion of circulation in and around the apartment. Because they’re full gloss, they reflect the city and harbour views by day and the city night lights by night. The apartment has three levels of floor-to-ceiling glass on the north and western sides so the shifting light throughout the day and into the evening is really beautiful.
I think what makes it very different to other penthouses is the full floor-to-ceiling glazing on two elevations. And because it’s over three levels, there is a big void that links all three levels. So from every level on the corkscrew stair or as you circulate around the curved wall, there are sight lines back down through all the spaces. Plus the mirrored wall behind the stair and in the dining area, which from different perspectives, gives you these surprising views that you wouldn’t otherwise see.
What were the requirements for the kitchen?
The kitchen was located so that it links with the primary living spaces, but is also oriented to focus on the city and harbour views beyond. But it was also important that the kitchen was designed to be coherent with the rest of the detailing and materiality throughout the apartment.
Our client’s brief was to incorporate Sub-Zero and Wolf from the outset, because he knew that it represented the highest quality. Throughout the whole apartment, he wanted uncompromised quality so it was his brief to use these products from the outset and then we designed those products seamlessly into the kitchen.
The material palette is quite pared back but obviously luxe, what kind of finishes have been used?
The client was very engaged throughout this project and like the kitchen, they had a hand in selecting the finishes, which not every client is interested in.
It is a pared-back palette of materials with travertine floors throughout, unifying high-gloss anthracite walls that are complemented by fresh white, calacatta marble and painted mirror.
Want to peruse another glamorous penthouse? Take a look at this St Kilda Road penthouse by David Hicks.