Eixample Apartment Renovation, Barcelona by Adrian Elizalde architect

Decades of excessive division of spaces and layers of coverings on floors, ceilings and joinery are removed to reveal the bones of a Barcelona apartment ripe for a contemporary update.


Details: In a building dating from 1930, architect Adrian Elizalde has cleared away confining space divisions and layers of previous renovations to reach traditional building elements such as tiled floors, vaulted ceilings and original wood joinery. New materials are subsequently added and, though clearly contemporary, they combine “harmoniously with the old to maintain the perception of unity.”

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Source: Via MOCO Submit.








“The project presents the renovation of an apartment located in the ‘Eixample’, Barcelona. The building dating from 1930, has a surface of 70 sq2 with a main façade facing ‘Provença’ street and a service yard.

At first, the apartment had the typical distribution of the old dwellings in Barcelona, many subdivided rooms and different layers of materials that had overlaid over the years. Regarding the limited budget available, we decided to maintain the location of the kitchen and bathroom, renewing them completely and therefore use more resources in the rest of the apartment.

Defoliation Before our intervention, the apartment had a decayed image and very dark due to the excessive division of the spaces. The main action taken was a selective ‘defoliation’ of all the layers to reach the traditional building elements as: tiled floors, vaulted ceilings and original wood joinery. The unique colours and drawings of the tiled pavement is an important element we wanted to highlight, we maintained the highest number of pieces discarding only the ones that were in very poor condition. To improve natural light and give homogeneity to the project we painted the whole apartment in white enhancing thus, the tiled floor and its colours. The new materials included, though clearly contemporary, discuss harmoniously with the old to maintain the perception of unity.

The table as architecture We simplified the distribution to obtain larger and brighter spaces. The most important part is the dining room, the heart of the apartment where there is a table of 3.10 meters long and a bench of 5.20 meters along the wall, which functions as seating, shelf, storage space, etc. This unique table in the apartment located between the living room, master bedroom and kitchen gathers all the activities of the apartment, acting as a study table, dining table, place connected with certain tasks in the kitchen, etc.

Scattering the limit We designed interior boundaries to create different spaces with large openings placed to diffuse the sense of confinement. Based on a sliding door system, we can transform the space to provide the necessary privacy, greater intimacy or, expand the space. The doors, which slide visible, create a dynamic composition of the limits. By replacing the opaque wall for glass at the top of the partition, we get a greater sense of spaciousness without diminishing the privacy and improving the natural lighting of the rooms.

PROJECT DATA Architect: Adrian Elizalde Photograph: Adrià Goula Project: January 2014 Execution: March 2014 – July 2014 Surface: 70 sq2 Budget project: 36.788 €”

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