A five-storey Edwardian terraced house within the Highgate Conservation Area is revived with the addition of a double height atrium which opens up elegant vertical connections and allows light and views to unfold throughout the home.
Created for a couple with two children and a large extended family, the brief was to deliver a warm, open plan, polished family home. Modernising and extending the building, which had not been renovated for some decades, has delivered bright and welcoming spaces to meet and celebrate, as well as separate but connected areas to work, rest and play.
Entering from the refurbished period hallway, a sliding door reveals the expansive atrium, with many guests remarking on the tardis-like experience of entering such a light and open space tucked within the traditional London home.
Emil Eve has balanced the vast overhead volume of the new extension with textural, tactile materials. A slender timber datum line, marking the pre-existing ground floor level, extends from the ground floor plane, wrapping around the new living space, and cleverly integrated as open plan kitchen shelving. Soft lime plaster gives a natural finish, while overhead glazing and wide sections of glazing at the rear fill the space with light.
The new lower ground floor opens onto a new patio and landscaped garden, bordered by brick planter beds that blend into the structure. Viewed from the garden, the brick extension appears as two volumes - a tall rectangular structure contrasted by a geometric extruded form reminiscent of the previously existing rear bay windows.
In the existing building new openings to the original staircase, now topped with a large roof-light, provide additional vertical connections and bring light into what was the darkest part of the home. Upstairs, a reclaimed attic volume makes a perfect secret cubby hideout.
Photography: Taran Wilkhu