Any kind of intervention in this space was not supposed to interfere with the existing. More than proposing, it was necessary to omit, more than designing, it was necessary to recover and integrate, more than composing, it was necessary to be simple and silent with rigour in response to new needs. This apartment in Lisbon, Portugal is integrated in a building originally designed as a Hotêl Particulier. The apartment occupies the 1st floor, originally the floor of the rooms – 11 rooms, one of them used as a bathroom. Being a social floor, almost all the walls and ceilings of these rooms were decorated with rich wall paintings.
When transformed into an individual fraction of housing, the apartment was occupied by Pedro Espirito Santo, known as the host of the best parties and dinners in Lisbon and the 11 rooms served this purpose perfectly.
In 2019, the apartment was acquired by a new owner, with a clear family structure. The intervention program in the space was based on the maintenance, conservation and restoration of all the architectural heritage of the property, but adapting it to family needs – from 1 bathroom, there are now 6 individual bathrooms.
All the work by ESQVTA was based on the premise that the interventions should be silent enough not to be noticed or to dispute the attention for the pre- existing.
If the recovery works were to be silent in the form and choice of materials, the interior design project chose a careful selection of timeless design pieces – thus, from the height of 18th century art, one could, in the same space, suddenly travel to what is best produced in 21st century design.
Design and info © ESQVTA
Images © Ricardo Oliveira Alves