Would you be interested in this flat filled with art that celebrates the water and mountain views, and was designed with influences from Carlo Scarpa’s brutalist architecture and other Italian designers from the 1960’s and 70’s? The real question should be, who wouldn’t?
Located in Vancouver, Canada, the home is situated in a 30-story residential tower within the city’s beach district and is uniquely positioned with views of both water and mountains. The neighbourhood is highly connected within downtown, offering walkable streets, bike lanes, cafés and restaurants. The team of Falken Reynolds created this refuge for a couple who lives between two continents. They used architectural lighting pieces, natural stone and a subdued colour palette in this pure yet energizing pied-à-terre.
The apartment is 1,200 square feet / 111 square meters. It is a single level south-west facing unit with an open concept kitchen and living room, main bedroom with ensuite and closet, and guest bathroom.
The building sits on the shore of False Creek and reflects an era ‒ specifically the 1990s — when steel and glass architectural aesthetics dominated the cityscape.But this artistically designed apartment for a couple working in media and finance who spend their time between Vancouver – which is their base for relaxing and enjoying fresh air and nature of Canada’s West Coast – and Asia – where they are originally from.
What is clear about this home is how one can effortlessly take advantage of the incredible views over English Bay and False Creek, while creating a comfortable and inspiring space for working and relaxing as well as hosting intimate gatherings. The brief from the homeowners is a home for those who love cooking and buying fresh produce and seafood from Granville Island Market, and the many fish mongers in the marinas, only steps away from their home. They also particularly like to explore and immerse themselves in artistic communities, as well as entertaining small groups of friends over tea or dinner.
The creative response from Falken Reynolds was to entirely rethink the floor plan so the views were maximized.Architectural lighting was key to bringing the same subtle ambience from day to night. Natural stone was used extensively, adding dramatic impact with tactile surfaces that beg to be touched. A playful mix of asymmetrical elements curated with a sense of balance creates a whimsical atmosphere.
“The homeowner’s personal fashion was a huge inspiration to us,” says Chad Falkenberg, principal and cofounder of Falken Reynolds. “She has an incredible sense of style that effortlessly combines youthful streetwear with adventurous luxury, eschewing predictable labels with unique and creative combinations. We used this as an inspiration to constantly push the boundaries of how we curated the space.”
Italian architects and designers of the 1960’s and 70’s: from Carlo Scarpa’s brutalist architecture to Milanese homes like Piero Portaluppi’s Villa Necci to the eclectic whimsy of Barnaba Fornasetti’s apartment. Falken Reynolds paired this back with a Canadian West Coast perspective that celebrates nature. Falken Reynolds also chose a palette of soft grays for the walls and millwork, then layered furniture and art to add just enough color and contrast.
“When the sun shines, there is an incredible amount of color outside – from the water to the buildings and boats along False Creek so we kept the foundation of the palette very subdued,” says Chad Falkenberg.
There are 11 different kinds of natural stone in the apartment, and was the starting point for building the material palette of each space. In the kitchen with a concealed wine cellar on the left: veined marble backsplash. Gold and brass accents were infused throughout the flat and green custom stone sink in Avocatus Quartzite from Brazil in the primary ensuite with a Bocci 87 lighting installation, (not to mention the white marble Agape Casa dining table).
“We wanted to create a space that was energizing, but still felt very clear, refreshing and optimistic”, says Chad Falkenberg. “While the home has layers of interesting details, textures and colors, we wanted those to give way to breathing in the ocean air and the incredible views from downtown Vancouver.”