An oasis of peace out of time in the center of Cape Town, South Africa: an unusual home set in a 19th century Protestant church.
The current owner, a Italian businessman who lives there with his wife for three months a year, purchased the building in 2005. Abandoned by the clergy in 1960, the building changed its identity several times: it was a dance studio, a woodworking shop and a photographer’s atelier.The former prayer hall, built for the followers of the Protestant movement founded around 1740 by the Anglican clergyman John Wesley, however, dates back to 1854 and recorded in the register of national monuments. It is located near the urban area occupied until the seventies by the notorious District Six, evacuated and razed by the apartheid regime.
Perry Harrison-Hyde, an architect commissioned to adapt the building, preserved its authentic atmosphere and created modern, unpretentious, functional interiors. Retaining original heritage of the building reqired removing all the changes done by the previous owners. For example, scraping off several layers of paint, accumulated over a long period of time, revealed beautiful wooden floor.
Sharp contast between raw, authentic architecture of the building and well balanced mixture of furniture styles makes the interiors absolutely unique. Rustic floors and white cabinets in the kitchen correspond with gothic-style, arched windows. Metal chairs and lamps work as contrasting elements. Avant-garde art pieces add colour and spice up the white, airy, breathing interiors.