Moving Walls and Pop-Up Furniture Create Flexible Interiors

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Tuesday, May 20th, 2014
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Adaptable Attic Apartment
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A renovation of 58 square metre apartment in Madrid incorporated moving walls and pop-up furniture to maximise interior space and create a flexible home.

Completed last year by Spanish studio Elii Architects, the Didomestic apartment is located within the attic of an old building in the city centre. The challenge was to create a design that makes optimal use of the reduced space by creating flexible rooms that can be adapted for different activities throughout the day.

Adaptable Attic Apartment

A rotating handle on the wall controls the pulleys needed to lower furniture from the ceiling.

The project is divided into two levels, a ground floor and a mezzanine level, connected by a metal staircase placed in the centre of the open floor plan. A central core comprising the staircase, some shelves and the larder connects the access floor and the space under the roof and allows natural light to come through the skylight into the living room.

While the mezzanine loft features private areas, including the bedroom and a bathroom area with a bathtub and floor panels that hinge open to reveal a vanity mirror and toiletry storage, the ground floorfeatures an open space with an integrated kitchen and a complete bathroom with a shower.

Adaptable Attic Apartment

The ground floor includes an open space with an integrated kitchen.

Four sliding panels allow the ground floor to be either opened up or divided into a series of smaller spaces, allowing the space to adapt to fulfil various needs, such as adding an extra room for a guest, separating the kitchen from the living room area or opening the whole floor for a party. The moving panels, which are integrated into the central core and run along guide rails, have transparent sections so the natural lighting coming through the mansard roof can reach the entire space.

The architects added a number of unusual elements to adapt the space to the resident’s lifestyle. A hammock, a playground swing and a disco ball can all be brought down from the ceiling, while a folding surface serves as a cocktail bar and/or as an ironing board.

Adaptable Attic Apartment

Ground floor plan

“Every house is a theatre. Your house can be a dance floor one day and a tea room the next,” the architects said.

Other features reveal wardrobes built into one of the walls and a picnic table and bench that lower down from the kitchen ceiling. A rotating handle on the wall controls the pulleys needed to lower this furniture from the ceiling, while other handles can be used to create an auxiliary kitchen table and shelves.

Adaptable Attic Apartment

Cross-section

“All these elements are integrated within the floor and the ceiling and they appear and disappear at the user’s whim. The secret trap doors and the sliding panels complement the basic configuration, fit the needs of the moment and provide different home layout combinations,” the architects said.

Adaptable Attic Apartment

Cross-section

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