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Solidly built as one of only six in a single block, this apartment, located in a leafy street in South Yarra, was blessed with good bones.

For a client not wanting to over-capitalise, this project was all about making wise decisions. Typically, this would translate to retaining a home’s existing service layouts, however a drastic change of configuration would be required to reveal this once beautiful apartments true potential.


Blessed with grand proportions and a north easterly aspect, the main bedroom would soon become a combined kitchen and living room space. Expanding the rooms access to natural light further, a window was turned into glazed door onto an enclosed balcony, a perfect place for the client’s morning coffee.

We wanted the kitchen to remain neutral and paired back, with muted colouring. Using Corian, a solid surface product as a key material to provide the link between the kitchen and a central table designed by the architect client. This paired back design methodology would allow the client’s art and possessions to become a key focus, while a mirrored splash back was used to reflect even more light and reflect the view of the luscious garden beyond.  

Special touches were made to retain the existing where possible, wonderfully detailed, original double doors, previously no more that wardrobe cupboards, were repurposed to create privacy (and a little drama) between the new kitchen and living spaces. Elsewhere, the timber flooring, hidden for nearly 60 years under carpet, was masterfully restored, no mean feature considering the rubber underlay had fused itself to the timber.

This apartment celebrates the existing building fabric, the rendered brick internal walls, stained timber doors and windows whilst benefiting from contemporary finishes and modern interpretations of  aged brass fixtures found elsewhere in the apartment. 

With all its challenges of both space and design, the apartment is transformed with new light and warmth, retaining all that made it remarkable, whilst celebrating the keen insight of both architect and (fellow architect) client. A rare marriage indeed. 




Daniel Fuge


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