Gira, one of the world’s leading full-range suppliers for intelligent building design and systems solutions, reveals how its range of products have helped transform a former rubber factory into a contemporary loft apartment: www.gira.com/en/en/inspirations/references/loft-h
Moving house often presents a lot of big changes, especially when transitioning from a conventional family home to an apartment in a converted industrial building in Cologne.
A place where minimal living and maximum functionality go hand in hand, Gira and its world-famous E2 Design Line for switches and sockets, which are sleek and distinct, help to underpin the industrial look in this contemporary home whilst enhancing the form and function of the overall interior space.
Architect Jochen Reetz and his team at DIIP were commissioned to convert a 170m2 loft in Nippes, Cologne, into a completely customized living space reflecting the owners’ desire for large open-plan spaces while also providing all-important spots to retreat and relax.
Mark Booth, Managing Director, Gira UK says “As a business, we are very proud that we can work with architects to bring the latest home technology to older properties worldwide, as our cities continue to evolve and building stock shifts from commercial to residential. Loft H in Cologne is a superb example of a highly personalized interior which is enhanced with the iconic Gira E2 collection so that the lighting controls elevate the luxe feel of the interiors and provide a common thread running through the whole project. Thanks to the robust plastic housing, the owners will be able to enjoy their Gira E2 switches for many years to come as well as having the freedom to easily connect them to a Gira smart home system in the future, if required.“
Jochen Reetz, Founder and Owner, DIPP says, “Due to the rapid pace of digital development, clients can often find it difficult to choose a technology in the knowledge that it might be completely out of date just a few years after installation. Many clients continue to struggle to weigh up the security concerns, costs and maintenance needs against the added value that these systems bring. Planners and professionals play a huge role in the decision-making process and can help to guide home-owners towards an individual and appropriate solution based on factors such as the clients’ priorities, budget, property size, technical expertise and current situation.“
Loft H is divided into three distinct zones compromising a spacious living and dining area, a bedroom area with an open-plan shower room, and a guest and relaxation area for everyday life and work. The uncomplicated and minimalist style of the loft features rich surfaces and bold contrasts, embracing its industrial past. In the living and dining area, steel, glass and Beton Ciré concrete create a seamlessly co-ordinated look. Ensuring a neat and tidy aesthetic is crucial so the homeowners have a generous amount of cupboard space distributed around the large kitchen island.
Materials such as steel and glass, combined with a concrete-effect finish, create a clear industrial aesthetic around the large work table in the living and dining area. Opposite the dining table and bathed in natural light, you can find a small and cosy sitting area ideal for reading or intimate conversation with guests. Thanks to integrated storage, the home owners can keep this space clutterfree. On the free wall, the black switches are an eye-catching contrasting feature in the four-metre-high space
The concept is the perfect backdrop for the clearly defined shapes of the Gira E2 design line. “The Gira E2 design line is streamlined and timeless. It represents pure function, so the person looking at it or using it does not question its role in the design concept. Contrast is always easier for us than complete co-ordination. It creates authentic and elegant accents,” explains architect Jochen Reetz, who opted for black matt switches and socket outlets from the Gira E2 design line throughout the apartment. The streamlined, square aesthetic of the Gira E2 design line blends in perfectly with the black window frames and black ceiling lights, without stealing the limelight from the rest of the interior.
The bedroom features a unique combination of natural materials and industrial accents with white-washed Dinesen floorboards, light mosaic tiles and industrial-style furniture made from Douglas wood create a calming atmosphere. The industrial look extends to the bathroom in a softer form with the black ceiling lights and the Gira E2 switches providing the only gentle reminders of the heritage of the space.