Mohamed Fares from Alchemy Design Studio designed this residence in Katameya Heights, Cairo, Egypt, that stands out amongst its fellow homes in more ways than one, as the architecture and interior design are made unique by their altered nature.
Here is the project description:
Alchemy’s Mohamed Fares began his transition from ordinary to extraordinary with the exterior of the house. He accents the basic design with several details; the colours are slightly altered with a neutral grey tone and while this produces a significant effect on the overall mood, it remains in harmony with the rest of the compound. Slate tiles cover portions of the facade, playing a role in the more contemporary window dressings that were also adjusted. Several other elements add to the contemporary feel of the architecture including a shift away from brick complements to wooden strips and linear accents instead.
Within the house more changes occur, the interior division was restructured to better suit the client’s lifestyle and columns and slabs were used for a more elegant outcome. The main concept was to create a space that integrates living areas but also maintains privacy. The design approach is a contemporary one with minimalistic tendencies and a poetic flair.
There are a few key elements in the design that particularly stand out, the first and most impressive of them all is the staircase. This design element is considered the grandest not only because of its creative nature, but because of the impact it had on the design of the house as a whole. Replacing the standard stairwell with a floor to ceiling chandelier by Melograno Blu caused a great challenge for workers in need of constant movement throughout the house as for most of the working time, there was no functional staircase. The result however, was worth the trouble. Standing out as a design masterpiece, the stairway offers a beautiful aesthetic and an interesting twist to what would otherwise be an overlooked structure.
The kitchen is another important design aspect. Considered a “high-tech” kitchen it is kept within Boffi’s style of sleek simplicity; appliances and other kitchen utensils are concealed behind clean lines and flushed cabinets while the finishes are a strict combination of black and stainless steel with an accent of a glass table. The design is meant to come alive through the use of its accessories as well as its capacity to welcome personal touches.
The basement, the family space, is another notable area of the house. A finely-rough tiled floor and an overall neutral palette of whites, beiges and greys create an ideal setting for art and colourful furniture accessories such as cushions, stools and side tables. Brought together in a cosy setting, the back wall is entirely fixed with a shelving unit with a ladder attached on a rail for its harder to reach portion. While it is in itself an art or design piece, it also enables the homeowners to use it as a display case for their highly treasured souvenirs and collector’s items.
The outdoor area of the house holds important design elements as well; with a partition entirely of glass, the interior of the house becomes a backdrop to the terrace and garden. The pool is designed in a linear fashion, bordering the house and stepping stones provide a Zen feeling that’s matched with the rich wooden stripped pergola.
The ongoing delight of the design is in its endless details. The more it is experienced the more is discovered, every corner and crevice unfolds another layer and another facet. A truly exquisite design and close to the designer’s heart, this Katameya Heights residence radiates creativity, wonder and splendour.
Photos by Hussein Shaaban