UXUS Loft in Amsterdam

UXUS designed a private residence located in a historic building on one of Amsterdam’s famous canals. The canal house is located in a 250m2 18th century warehouse with a panoramic view over the city. The owners wanted to keep the original open-plan layout of the space so, UXUS created a series of dramatic curtain walls, which could be opened and closed according to the needs of use. All of the decorative interior elements were selected to reflect the eclectic tastes of the owners.

Located in a historic building in one of Amsterdam’s famous canals; the canal house occupies a total area of 250 square meters. It is located in an 18th century warehouse with a panoramic view over the city. The owners wanted to keep the original open plan layout of the space so UXUS created a series of dramatic curtain walls which could be opened and closed accordingly to the needs of use. All the interior decorative items were selected to reflect the owners’ eclectic taste.

Before the renovation the loft was not set up as a residence and was an empty void. Curtain “walls”, lighting and a kitchenwere added to make what was an old industrial empty space livable.

When entering the house one could but notice the most abundant material in the house which is wood. The entire loft is supported on large wooden beams and pillars which create a very warm and welcoming effect. The hard wooden floor runs length-wise of the house adding an elongated effect to the space. The virtual dividers to this open plan layout are the long draped curtains in a neutral sand tone which divide the spaces as if you are in a hospital examining room. The curtains allow for visual privacy, as this is very essential in any open plan layout. The brick walls of the loft were left untouched and have been painted in a cool white tone to compliment the wood. Some walls were painted in a blue gray tone and are used as the background, as in a painting. The plumbing pipes are exposed and run along the brick walls.

Old vintage furnishings have been selected and some have been modified to compliment the lofts interior design. Two notable furniture pieces of the loft are the Eames molded plywood chairs, 1946 which have been referred to as the “most famous chair of the century,” with a low-slung form that relates directly to the human body and holds no secrets as to how it succeeds technically. Buffets and armoires, bedside tables, and a bed for the royal and the noble; pieces where each and every one of them has a character of its own which speaks of its history and its status.

The bathroom has light gray marble tiles running up to a certain height and is painted in an anthrax color ripolin while it is separated by a curtain divider instead of a door. The anthrax color ripolin paint acts as the background or the frame for a royal crowned polished dead bird which stands proudly on its golden throne while imposingly stepping on a skull. The bathroom portrays elegance, and a sophisticated yet ironic setting.

Art pieces and polished animals such as a dragonfly, birds, a donkey, and deer horns, skulls in all sizes and of various species, a bowl with seashells and skulls set a poetic and quixotic mood to this house. The late 19th century Victorian olive green dinning chair which royally stands next to the dinning table as it creatively wears a piano jacket. Another art piece which draws attention is the Casper-like face in a black box-like case with a handle set on a very old drawer. The space is creatively designed with a juxtaposition of mid-century modern / Hollywood era. However, the lighting is very notable as it is quite modern for the design style which is carried throughout the loft. Sputnik style hanging lights create a totally different dramatic atmosphere to the living space, while science lab light fixtures bring us back to the mad scientist scenery!

The space renovation and redesign has been creative, idiosyncratic and eclectic yet on the other hand it creates an ironic, poetic and romantic living area for the occupants of this loft! There’s so much to love about this space from individual pieces which may seem extreme and terrifying yet it’s livable! Amsterdam Loft has received the International Design Award for 2008, and UXUS Design has been awarded with the gold award for Best Residential Interior for 2008.

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