Residential canalhouse Amsterdam

Location: Amsterdam
Client: private
Area: 500 m2
Activities: restoration, architectural and interior design, Concept Design to Execution, tender documents, construction supervision, project management, delivery.
Project completion: October 2019
Photography: Wouter van der Sar
See below for an impression of the project before renovation.

As part of a row of 3 properties, this listed residence was built in 1685. The client and occupant at the time was a Lutheran wine buyer. Probably in 1750 the back house was realized.

A number of renovations took place in 1900 and 1943. Despite these renovations, in the more than 300 years of the property’s history, the layout is fairly unchanged, especially the central staircase is probably original. However, this staircase was modeled after the much smaller man from the 17th century. Therefore, the biggest task was to incorporate an additional stairwell to improve accessibility between the 3 most frequently used floors.

Most suitable place for this was the connecting piece between front and back house. The demolition of a utility room built in 1943 paved the way for reorganizing the cluttered connecting section: incorporating a pair of large glass fronts and placing 2 slim steel-plate staircases. Despite the limited space available, we succeeded in making the stairs easily walkable and the whole thing spacious and transparent.

The first floor of the rear house is arranged as the central living kitchen. To make the beautiful city garden more involved in the house, the existing 1943 masonry extension of the rear house was replaced with a slender glass structure. The corner facade can be completely slid open so that the kitchen flows into the terrace without a threshold.

With the exception of a single wall in the basement, the original layout of the monument has been maintained. Almost invisibly, a modern electrical and climate control system has been incorporated. The back room of the bell floor is furnished as a library, the “hall” in the back house is used as a drawing room, with the paneling painted in blue hues after intensive color research and experimentation.

The 1st floor of the front house is entirely designated as the clients’ comfortable sleeping quarters.
The former junk attic of the rear house has been insulated and converted into a spacious guest room.

To achieve a careful balance between the contemporary and the monument, and between comfort and tradition, a wide palette of materials was used in the renovation. From stainless steel to marble, from patinated brass to banded walnut. The result is a benevolent family home where history is embraced by the contemporary.

Want to know more about this project?

Contact Willem Heyligers by calling +31 20 627 01 62 or leave a message:

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