Beauty above all – This home designed by Poiat Studio has aesthetics as the prime focus

A modern 1960s city apartment in Helsinki was transformed into a timelessly beautiful and warmly luxurious home for a family with children. Poiat Studio was responsible for planning the renovation – already the second time for this family.

The Fauteuil Direction chair by Vitra.
The long living room is divided into two separate lounging areas. Bright rooftop views open up from wall-to-wall windows, while the low oak tops conceal the radiators. The Fauteuil Direction chair is by Vitra.

THE SIMPLE AND sophisticated apartment was renovated with aesthetics as the prime focus, although the practical side is so ingrained in the designer’s approach that it’s always in check.

The home with its elegant oak touches and pale tones is the second home designed by Poiat Studio for the family. While looking for a new, more spacious apartment for their growing family, the owners knew they wanted to enlist the help of the same professionals, who had created such a comfortable home for them before.

“The family and designers shared the same values and ideas over quality and budget for realizing their wishes. When even the preferences and style were similar and personal chemistry a match, the starting points were nothing short of ideal. When beginning a residential project, that’s what the situation should be”, says Antti Rouhunkoski, co-founder of Poiat Studio.

A fireplace from the 60s
An original, streamlined fireplace on one end of the living room.
Artek  Aalto floor lamp A805, polished brass
The sofa groups are bordered by rugs that tie in with the color of the oak floor. The plush sofa is Bristol by Poliform. The marble table was designed for the owners’ previous home and the A805 floor lamp is by Artek.
Vintage table lamp
Old table lamps spice up the room. The work of Poiat Studio extended all the way to the smaller details like cushions and free-standing lamps.
Jacques sofa by Minotti
The sleek Jacques sofa by Minotti, a bespoke bookcase and TV stand dominate one end of the long space. The sculptural side table is also by Minotti.
A805 floor lamp by Artek
The impressive entrance both opens and obstructs views in a good way. The dining area and kitchen are located to the right facing the courtyard. The cube-shaped section with its oak veneer doors and paneling hides storage units and the toilet.

The new home has a lighter feel than the family’s previous home, but otherwise included similar solutions. The owners appreciated the way the designers divided spaces with coherent fixed furniture and paneling. They liked how the solutions concealed a great deal of storage space and formed a streamlined, overall structure and backdrop for subsequent additions.

Details and materials play a starring role in the minimal décor.

“All of our projects include something old, something existing and something new,” says Antti. “The old comprises visual mementos and impressions, the existing includes the context of the site, and the new is about the client’s wishes and designer’s visions.”

A well-executed project means that all these elements are brought together, so the home looks like its designers and feels like its owners and they find it comfortable.

A view to the living room
Wide doorways between the living and dining area create an open, gallery-like feel.
GUBI  Multi-Lite pendant, brass
Coherent materials like the herringbone parquet and walls in soft white accentuate the mood.
Lavitta table by Poiat Studio
A two-tone Lavitta table by Poiat Studio was matched with elegant, lightweight metal chairs by Ligne Roset.
GUBI  Multi-Lite pendant, brass
The dining area is located at the end of the kitchen. The table is illuminated by GUBI's Multi-Lite pendant in brass, as was the case in the previous home.

THE ARCHITECTURAL STYLE provides the framework for the design. The designers at Poiat Studio pay attention already to the transition as a person enters from the street, through the stairwell and into the home – the progression and the way the home welcomes the person.

The entrance of the top-floor apartment is luxurious. A clean-lined, structured view opens up from the spacious lobby, with living areas glimpsed through a few doorways. The gaze is steered towards the heart of the home lined in oak veneer paneling that stylishly conceals a wardrobe, toilet and other storage.

The period of the property is reflected in the dimensions and chosen materials.

The wainscoting is a marriage of aesthetics and functional qualities, creating both visually appealing structure and shielding the extensive doors and paneling when the children’s play gets a little rougher.

A kitchen designed by Poiat Studio
The kitchen was furnished with pieces designed by Poiat Studio and built by a carpenter. The details and dimensions continue in the same vein as the cabinets and paneling in the rest of the home.
Vitra  Rotary tray, ice grey
The narrow worktops and hob were added to the middle of the space. The worktops are stone composite by Barbatus. The ice grey Rotary Tray is by Vitra.

Carefully considered details can enrich an otherwise minimalist interior with an elegant finishing touch. The way paneling joins, continues or comes to a halt has an effect on the overall mood. In addition to a careful design, it’s important to find carpenters and builders with the right skills and desire to apply their expertise to the project.

A building project is always about collaboration and a sum of many parts, so it’s vital that everyone shares the same motivation and goal. Fortunately, the owners have always understood the significance of each detail and been ready to invest in them.

Layering and personal touches create a timeless aesthetic.

“We prefer simple, clean lines with a touch of luxury and elegance. We feel comfortable surrounded by few, carefully chosen objects and don’t crave any particular interior pieces or accessories,” the owner explains.

A bedroom with an artwork on the wall
The minimalist bedroom has a sumptuous mood reminiscent of a hotel. Poiat Studio remained faithful to the period of the building, which is reflected in the choice of materials and colors.
A detail of a cupboard door
The more or less wall-to-wall row of cupboards continues in the same vein as other storage units and paneling in the apartment.
Bedroom door in oak
Doors were replaced by a flush model with 60s-style veneer coating, which were built by a carpenter. Art, vintage stools, textiles and table lamps breathe life into the space.
Guatemala Verde in the bathroom
The parents’ bedroom serves up a little surprise, albeit tying in with the overall mood of the home. The green marble tiles are Guatemala Verde.
Guatemala Verde in a vanity unit
The same stone continues in the vanity unit. Wooden blinds add privacy.
Corte trolley by Tebian.
The Corte trolley with a marble top is by Tebian.

Cohesion, layers, and details play a starring role; the smallest elements have a direct effect on both quality and aesthetics. A home is meant to be lived in, meaning that a refined vision needs to withstand daily lives both in practice and visually.

At best, a layered feel only improves with time, as the home matures and receives a more personal stamp – a timeless beauty.

Get inspired

Lavitta table
Multi-Lite pendant
Standard chair
Rotary tray
Vaidava Ceramics
Eclipse bowl
A805 floor lamp
Hand towel
Plinth marble table

See also:

All products by Poiat at Finnish Design Shop >

Text: Ulla Koskinen Images: Sameli Rantanen

This story was originally published in the Asun Homes Volume 5.

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