Ground floor refurbishment Phase 1


The brief for this project was seemingly quite simple: to renovate of the ground floor of a two level apartment in a mansion block in Kensington. The biggest challenge? The timing.




How to re-design a space with no or minimal structural work

Swapping cream walls for warm greys, cold marble floors for Tobago oak, and installing soft lighting transforms a cool, formal lobby into a warm and welcoming home.

Challenge No. 1

The Underfloor heating

This project had to be delivered during the summer holiday. Summer holidays are always a challenge for the construction industry. The clients would like the house ready for their return but as many factories close, the supplier lead times are longer. Coordinating multiple trades and ensuring continuous workflow is all the more problematic when the site space is confined to just 100sqm.

The first logistical challenge was the installation of the under floor heating, which had to be electric according to the mansion block's restrictions. In the kitchen, the slow screed drying times created a very narrow window of opportunity to fit and test the electrics before the team could lay the tiles, fit the cabinetry and hand finish all the custom made doors.

Warming your house in 6 layers

Challenge No. 2

The kitchen refurbishment

In the kitchen, no fewer than 9 specialist trades were required. Just one delay early on would topple the whole timetable, so it was important that everything went to plan.

Kitchen units & appliances: Mark Wilkinson - 3 weeks
Under Floor Heating: Speed heat - 2 days
Demolition, joinery, plumbing, electrical, plastering & general build: G&Co. - 3 weeks

Fixtures and Finishes

  • Fitted joinery by Mark Wilkinson
  • Wall paint by Farrow & Ball Shaded White
  • Cabinet doors – custom painted
  • Brassware by Perrin & Rowe
  • Floor Porcelain tiles by Fired Earth
  • Sockets & switches by Forbes & Lomax
  • Table by Hulsta

Challenge No. 3

Redesigning the lighting

Like many 19th century mansion block flats, this flat has incredibly high ceilings and large reception rooms, but unfortunately the street layout and orientation reduces the amount of natural light. This increases the need for carefully planned lighting schemes that draw the eye to particular features and encourage a sense of space.

We combined a series of different lighting systems, including stylized wall lights that were sculptural objects in their own right, carefully placed downlights with gallery quality LED lamps and larger strip LED lighting to create more expansive washes of light to the walls and ceilings. The complete effect is both dramatic and elegant.