With its grand 19th-century bones and modern, elegant interiors, Boscolo’s recently completed Marlborough Mansions project tells a tale of London’s architecture and design evolution over the last 100 years.
Characterised by sky-high ceilings, original covings and immense bay windows, the storied three-bedroom apartment – situated within a West Hampstead mansion block – set its first scene as a high-end residence designed in response to the Industrial Revolution’s population boom. Calling on the skills of fashionable architects Boehmer and Gibbs, mansion block builder Edward Jarvis Cave erected the property in 1898, answering to the increased demand in the wealthy wanting to live in London.
Accelerating thoughts from the 19th-century to the here and now, leading London interior design firm Boscolo brings a new dimension to the narrative by giving the space a sensitive 21st-century upgrade. A redesign with an aesthetic so successful, the project earned the studio three accolades at the International Property Awards 2016.
Gestural artwork introduces an abstract edge, which is echoed throughout rest of the property. “We chose expressive, emotive pieces that complemented the design scheme’s colour palette, and were keen to choose large pieces for high impact due to the large spanning walls and high ceilings,” says Gurjeet. The hallway’s specially commissioned canvas – scattered with golden touches – becomes the focal point of the space. A circular mirror, an elegant console and a simple array of accents complete the look with an air of effortless elegance.
The furniture selections were also made to be in keeping with the character of the property.
Continuing the smart, sympathetic interior design seen downstairs, Gurjeet explains how the studio worked around the structural limitations that come with period apartment blocks. “We were unable to remove the chimney breast in the master bedroom. So instead, we wallpapered and upholstered the chimney breast wall, making it the main design feature in the room. To either side of the chimney breast, we cladded the wall with a bespoke design mirror with bevelled detailing to create a sense of space.”
As the history of design repeatedly tells us, being mindful of yesterday’s aesthetics and giving them a new part to play on a modern-day stage is so often a formula for masterful results. It’s Boscolo’s execution of fine contemporary interiors – whilst respecting and enhancing period elements – that gives Marlborough Mansions its incredibly on-trend yet time-enduring appeal.