Home Tour: An Open-Plan Living Room and Colourful Accents in a Barcelona Apartment
When interior designer and homeowner Roser Torres Coixet first laid eyes on the site of her new abode in Barcelona, she saw the creative possibilities its large windows and spacious outdoor area could bring—despite it being in need of a major refurbishment. Although the original layout and conditions of the 3,013sqft apartment were far from ideal, Coixet was undeterred.
“While it was in no way my dream home, it had huge potential due to the abundance of natural light,” says Coixet, the founder of Roser Coixet Interiors. “This space had the most wonderful natural light flooding in, and that really became the central point of my design ideas.”
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The interior designer was heavily inspired by the bright and airy modern houses she saw in Los Angeles, and wanted to create a similar effect in her apartment with an open-plan layout. She worked closely with Eduardo Benítez Niño Architect on the renovation, while Italian brand Viabizzuno recommended and installed suitable lighting elements in the southeast-facing apartment; the entire makeover took about a year to complete.
This space had the most wonderful natural light flooding in, and that really became the central point of my design ideas
— Roser Torres Coixet, the founder of Roser Coixet Interiors
The designer sought to start from the ground up to achieve the interior of her dreams. This involved stripping the apartment of all its original floorboards and decorative elements, and redesigning the layout to improve light and air ventilation. “I wasn’t happy with the materials used in the house and the original layout,” says Coixet. “I wanted a blank canvas, and while it required some demolition, I saw that this place could fulfill my dream requirements.”
She aimed to create a relaxing, open-plan space with a continuous flow from the entrance and living area to the balcony. The entire abode is also well decorated with an evolving collection of art and mid-century furniture. “I wanted to create a space that would retain a timeless sense of style and could be updated easily with new art and design elements, to create a dialogue between the old and the new,” she says. “And I wanted a space that reflected my family and our love of entertaining.”
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Upon entering the home, visitors will see two clearly demarcated areas: the open-plan living, dining and kitchen areas, as well as an outdoor zone that looks out to magnificent views of the communal swimming pool and garden. White walls inspired by the clean-lined look of art galleries were among the key features of the renovation—these enhance the apartment’s airy ambience while showcasing the family’s vibrant collection of art and vintage furniture.
“I chose a light palette to enhance the brightness, and highlight the furnishings and vivid tones of the artworks,” says Coixet. A tactile combination of light wood, dark marble and natural textiles adds to the cosy atmosphere.
In the living room, the Big Round mirror by Sabine Marcelis and Brit Van Nerven from Side Gallery echoes the bold hues of the accent pieces. A highly polished green resin table from the Candy Cubes series by Sabine Marcelis, also from Side Gallery, adds another playful touch.
The effortless mix is also evident in the dining room, which features the Knoll Executive chairs designed by Eero Saarinen. Sourced from Side Gallery, these vintage pieces were commonly seen in American homes during the seventies. This space also features a vintage iron and formica table, a sideboard by French company Guillerme et Chambron, works by British visual artist Marc Quinn and digital art by Paris-based artist Miguel Chevalier; the latter was purchased from Ventana Contemporary, a gallery in Ibiza.
An iron folding door with jute mesh panels from Finsa separates the dining area from the kitchen; the woven texture on the door is carried into the latter, which features cane bar stools and the B1 kitchen island and wall shelves from Bulthaup.
Modern American design was a huge influence on the home’s decor, while Coixet’s keen interest in art and design contributes to its eclectic look. Jewel tones on the upholstered furnishings and accessories add decorative flair to the abode and enliven its light palette.
“I am passionate about many aspects of design, ranging from architecture, art and fashion to vintage jewellery,” says Coixet. “My work has been heavily influenced by my travels, with each country opening me up to fresh experiences, expert craftsmanship and new design possibilities. As a designer, my goal is to create a unique atmosphere in harmony with the architecture of the space, while incorporating the use of fine art and furniture as well as dynamic lighting. I take pleasure in using a combination of vintage and modern pieces, alongside contemporary art.”
The northeast-facing bedrooms extend the light palette, along with a plush mix of upholstery. The spaces look out to enviable vistas of the Serra de Collserola mountain range. In her daughter’s bedroom, the Voie wall lamp by Sabine Marcelis from Side Gallery adds visual interest. It is accompanied by an Ivano Redaelli bed, a vintage bedside table from Antique Boutique and a metallic raffia paper lamp by Phillip Jeffries from Gastón y Daniela.
For the master bedroom, Coixet similarly selected a stylish mix of vintage and contemporary furnishings. These include a vintage floor lamp, the Djinn chaise longue designed in 1965 by Olivier Mourgue and a set of three framed watercolour paintings from the 19th century—all of which were sourced from Barcelona-based furniture gallery 177 Kensington. This space also features a crimson Gong Due side table from Meridiani that echoes the rosy hues of the paintings.
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In contrast to the understated look of the master bedroom, the ensuite bathroom is full-on glamour—it features a handsome vanity clad in Cheyenne black granite, Portuguese pink marble walls and a backlit mirror with a brass frame from Viabizzuno. “I absolutely adore my bedroom and private bathroom. It is my oasis,” says Coixet. She adds: “I believe a dream home should include authenticity, natural materials, and a touch of the exquisite. I believe good design is all about synthesising sophistication and comfort, resulting in spaces that are elegant and cosy.”
And indeed, all these qualities and more are evident in this apartment, which is now truly a place Coixet and her family can call home.
This story was first published in the June-July 2021 issue of Tatler Homes Singapore, now available on Magzter and newsstands.
- Photography Daniel Schaefer / Photofoyer
- Styling Patricia Ketelsen / Photofoyer
- Florist Florestudio