Designed by Shape London, the “Lunar Kitchen” is situated in a 2,050-square-foot duplex apartment within a listed Victorian house in London’s Little Venice district. As with many London properties, maximizing space was a major consideration. “We wanted to utilize every inch of it,” says Rob Streather, managing director of Shape London. Knitting an oak stair into the kitchen transformed the tight double-height space into a centerpiece for the property, creating a light-filled and contemporary cooking and entertaining spot for a family of three.
The star of the Lunar Kitchen is a double-height oak staircase that conceals a huge amount of storage, creates a connection between floors, and maximizes the space. Photo © Adam Scott Images, click to enlarge.
The designers inserted a wall of tempered glass panes along the stairs as a safety barrier and to admit natural light. They integrated appliances, cabinets, and open storage beneath the stairs, illuminating the various components with recessed LEDs. “We were conscious not to make the space feel dominated by wall-to-wall cabinets,” says Streather. “The staircase is great in this respect, as it conceals a huge amount of storage and its glass breaks up the elevation, creating a dynamic space.” A bead detail in the doors of the stair-elevation refers to the home’s period features.
Working within the constraints of a historic property, the team had to maintain all of the coving, which posed a challenge when planning the staircase and ensuring sufficient headroom at the corner before ascending the second flight above the kitchen. “All the while, we needed to precisely align all the cabinets below the staircase,” says Streather. “Even the tiniest variation in riser angle would throw everything out.”
Click plan to enlarge
Architect of Record:
Milk Structural Engineers
2,500 square feet
Heritage Flooring UK
The Marble Group
Paints and Stains:
Farrow & Ball
Blum; Furnipart Station (handles); Richelieu (recessed channels); Libell Magic Corner Comfort (other)