If walls could talk, those of the Copenhagen Apartment would have some stories to tell. Surviving a devastating fire is one thing but also being the ‘summer’ home of renowned Danish designer Poul Henningsen sure is another. It’s no wonder Norm Architects took to tirelessly restoring and rebuilding the historic apartment for a family of three.
DESIGN & PHOTOGRAPHY Norm Architects
A home touched by Poul Henningsen is a home blessed by design. But the future was looking dim for this Copenhagen Apartment after it was significantly damaged by fire in 2014. Very little of the original building remained but thanks to the innovative eye of Norm Architects, the apartment was rescued in a meticulous rebuild. On the upside, this offered opportunity to extend the height of the facades and hence, better accomodate family living. What were once small divided rooms are now one an expansive living area, adorned with low paned windows on all sides. The living space is segmented not by walls but by bespoke timber elements; a large kitchen cabinet wrapped in dark stained oak and solid oak floating staircase. The dynamic space transitions softly from one parquet floor to another while remaining consistent with the building’s original features.
Natural light goes a long way in creating a contemporary identity for the home. Skylights flood the staircase, bouncing off the white walls to gently enhance the scale and height of the geometry at play in the home’s structure. Lighting is privileged in all forms, but most pertinently in the PH lamps. Coincidently, the owner had been collecting Poul Henningsen lamps for quite some time and took pleasure in displaying them around the home. The PH amber-coloured Pendants hang proudly in the kitchen, adding warmth and integrity to the minimalist abode. The collectors items are not out of place with mid-century teak furniture; an affirming elegance against marble plinth. There’s something to say for holding value in the design of each piece that can stand beautifully alone and integrate seamlessly – a philosophy Norm Architects illuminate in every inch of their work.
Thanks to a new generation of reputable designers, a classic Copenhagen Apartment has entered a modern chapter. Norm Architects have thoughtfully preserved the family home in every respect – structurally, aesthetically and historically – while opening it up to fresh beginnings. Entrusting Norm Architects to appreciate the legacy of Poul Henningsen was a decision well made and a timelessness guaranteed.
‘With light coming in from different angles, every room of the house is bright, filled with daylight and comfortable to be in.’
— Norm Architects