Having delivered projects for the likes of Kanye West and Giorgio Armani, as well as being the mastermind behind the Oblix Restaurant at The Shard, Claudio Silvestrin is well-known in the world of architecture for his strict adherence to minimalism and his crisp, clean interiors.
Such was the case with Hampstead – a marathon project that required invisible technology to proliferate throughout the property.
As this was a residential property development, it was crucial that the technology provided offered complete flexibility in the systems specified. All systems needed to be future-ready in case the new owners required extra functionality in their smart home; this meant that features such as security monitoring had to be provisioned to cover all eventualities.
With a property focused heavily on aesthetics and simplicity, the lighting and shading systems play a crucial part in the delivery – and enhancement – of the architect’s vision.
Natural light is managed using Lutron motorised shades, which also guarantee year-round privacy. In many of the bedrooms, the windows posed a particular dilemma for our team as, despite their substantial width, Astwood – the property developer – wanted a single shade for each window fitting. Additionally, the entire roller blind needed to be kept out of sight when not in use. This was resolved by the creation of recessed areas in the ceiling, which comfortably hide the roller mechanism at all times.
No more than two or three lighting fixtures could be accommodated in each room and there are no spotlights at all throughout the property – only wall lights, LED strip lights and free- and floor-standing lamps were permitted. These few fixtures needed to generate an adequate level of lux in all areas of the residence both during the daytime and at night.
This presented the Andrew Lucas London team with a highly complex challenge. The team had to work closely with the design team to carefully visualise every imaginable use case for the space, crafting each lighting scene around the scant fixtures available to ensure the perfect colour temperature for each room. The implementation of a Lutron control system, overlaid with Savant, results in a control interface that is stylish and simple to use for occupants and visitors alike.
In the basement, a lack of natural light in the pool and sauna area meant that the lighting fixtures were crucial in terms of setting the mood. By counterpointing the clear, white lighting and underwater illumination with DMX-controlled RGB LED strip lighting, Andrew Lucas created a varied and visually stimulating environment that nonetheless remains in line with the property’s elegant charm.
Amina invisible plaster-in speakers guarantee outstanding audio quality with no visible footprint, while custom joinery conceals several audio-visual components, such as a television in the master bedroom revealed using a motorised sliding door. Outdoors, audio sinks are disguised as rocks and hidden amongst the gardens.
The cinema is the crown jewel of the property: an impressive space that incorporates DMX mood lighting, Tron-style LED strips and Bowers & Wilkins CWM8.5 speakers with dual in-wall subwoofers. The room’s design ethos is maintained by the use of a hidden JVC projector combined with an acoustically-transparent screen, behind which the bulk of the speakers can be secreted while still preserving audio integrity.
Comprehensive plans of every aspect of the cinema room – including layout and wall and speaker configuration – were devised by Andrew Lucas’ in-house design team to create the perfect movie-watching environment. A dedicated Denon X3000 receiver powers the cinema’s speakers and provides access to a number of media sources, including Apple TV and Sky. Additionally, the limited wall depth available in the cinema room meant that speaker and subwoofer installation posed a challenge; this was overcome by specifying slim-form speakers for optimum audio performance in the space available.
The open-plan layout struck a hurdle with planning permission – such a sprawling space would have to be sub-divided with bulky steel fire-curtains, complete with ugly industrial wall controls. Andrew Lucas London designed a custom control panel in the style of the existing Lutron keypads in its rapid prototyping laboratory to replace the unsightly fire curtain controls and restore the careful balance of the space.
Hampstead was an incredible project as it forced the team to devise several intelligent solutions to blend the property’s technology into this minimalist masterpiece. Hampstead represents a union of some of the finest craftsmen in the world, from the initial design concepts through construction right up to Andrew Lucas’ sophisticated technology treatment.
In our client’s words:
For this exclusive project, we only wanted to work with the very best in the trade in order to create a stunning minimalist property where the design and technology work in complete harmony. We selected Andrew Lucas London for their exceptional track record and complete attention to detail. They took on a challenging brief to formulate and implement a technology solution that was entirely sympathetic to the bespoke, minimalist nature of the property.
Andrew Lucas London’s consultancy and advice proved invaluable during the design process, proposing technology that would dovetail best with the interior design while also adding value to the property development. From the moment they arrived on site to the completion of the project, Andrew Lucas London’s team behaved with complete professionalism. They treated the property with the utmost respect and worked well alongside the other experts to guarantee the smooth implementation of the project.
From initial conversation to the premium customer support offered post-completion, Andrew Lucas London delivered exemplary service and a willingness to engage with and overcome a variety of design and installation challenges. I would definitely recommend their services for similarly prestigious projects.
Technology used in this property:
Intelligent lighting control
Custom control panels
Recessed window treatments
Bowers & Wilkins