Lights out
Belle Magazine Australia|February-March 2021
The dark, dramatic palette of this rooftop penthouse provides the perfect backdrop for the owners’ precious collection of antiques.
CARLI PHILIPS

After 15 years of collecting precious antiques and filling a huge, neoclassical family house, the owners of this rooftop penthouse found it a challenge to downsize to an apartment almost four sizes smaller, considerably more modern and all on one level. It meant selling their home’s entire contents and holding on to only treasured pieces. Enter David Hicks, who helped steer his clients in the right direction, buoyed by the “clean slate” the space offered. He worked intimately with his clients on the “sight unseen” residence to establish a supremely bespoke interior that included raising the ceiling to make room for a large tapestry in the entry, designing cabinetry to accommodate hero pieces, modifying old French chandeliers for new placement and personalising wardrobe space.

The owners sought a subdued, moody scheme to offset the intense natural light from the floor-to-ceiling glass. David says this deviation from convention was a brave choice considering today’s general preference for the safety of bright, expansive white-on-white. “The apartment occupies the entire top floor of the building with 360-degree glazing, so a darker interior really suited the space. It has allowed some warmth and respite from the sun.” For balance, David fashioned a luxurious arrangement of chocolate parquetry, smoky walls, seagrass wallpaper, hand-knotted rugs and rattan armchairs accented with Knoll Saarinen ‘Executive’ chairs in white linen and milk-honeycomb kitchen marble slabs.

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