A Marble Chopping Block Door Opens Up to Reveal a Sophisticated Brazilian Apartment
In São Paulo’s upscale Jardins neighborhood, an art-loving couple with a young child hired Pascali Semerdjian Architects to transform their 4,155-square-foot, three-bedroom apartment into a unique home with plenty of style.
Sarkis Semerdjian, one of the studio’s two founders, says that the firm has its DNA in haute couture. "We like to design everything exclusively for our projects to optimize space. Many of the furniture pieces—such as the living room sofa and side table, dinner countertop, bar, and lunch room sofa—were designed by us to ensure that they are the best fit for the project," says Semerdjian.
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Pascali Semerdjian Architects used rustic "peroba do campo" wood for much of the flooring. The architects used concrete to emphasize the living room floor, which is lower than the rest of the apartment. This creates the impression that this part of the house is "detached from the wood floor."
Pascali Semerdjian Architects introduced a variety of copper elements near the entrance door, on the library shelves, and in the bathroom. The boldness and glamour of this metal strikes contrast with the otherwise earthy and cozy interior.
One of the home's most arresting features is its entrance door, which is made from a dense wooden board that was once used as a chopping block for marble slabs.
The board was placed beneath marble sheets while they were cut, and the pressure lines of the blade are "recorded" on the wood.
"We saw this beautiful irregular pattern in this wood board during a visit to choose marble sheets, and we imagined it could become a beautiful and unique door. So we bought it from the marble supplier, then cleaned and polished it. Hundreds of wood boards like that go to the trash after they are all cut. We were probably the first people to see beauty in something that’s under every architect's nose," says Semerdjian.