Open & Bright: A Masculine Parisian Flat by Humbert & Poyet

Originally built in the 1970s, this apartment in Paris was not without promising bones. Situated on the top floor of the complex, with views of the surrounding rooftops on both sides of the apartment, its vantage point was ideal. The challenge for a redesign would be to infuse the space with the urban, masculine essence of the owner’s personality, as well as to create an open plan that would showcase those stellar views.

Humbert & Poyet, the design duo tasked with the reimagining of this decades-old home, sought to create, as they describe it, a “graphic and bright open space.” This was achieved through the creation of modular spaces within the unit, thanks to sliding partitions that are cleverly concealed in custom-made joineries that look like, and are painted like, walls. (The paint, they tell us, is from Farrow & Ball, an artisanal paint company founded in the wake of the second world war; now a global name for its incomparable formulas, the company has been eco-friendly since 2010.) These walls were then punctuated by bronze frames, which would delineate the different areas in the home — the office, the library, and so forth. The spirit of the owner, a collector of contemporary art photos and vintage fixtures, is honoured throughout the home via decorative details and photography by the likes of Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, Will McBride, Bruno Staub, and Robert Longo.

Humbert & Poyet chose a white Carrara marble for the bathroom walls and a white subway tile for the shower. The inclined washbasin was custom-made by the firm from Nero Marquina marble, its dark hues echoed in matte taps from NEVE Rubinetterie. Metallics seen elsewhere in the apartment are given continuity here in a round mirror sourced from Galerie Studio Schalling in Sweden.

The kitchen floors are made from a waxed concrete. Cabinetry is custom-made by Humbert & Poyet in a medium brushed finish that has been painted in Farrow & Ball’s “Off Black.” Countertops feature more of that beautiful white Carrara marble, and the household appliances are MIELE. The contemporary table and chairs were designed by metal artisan Jean Prouvé, whose creations have been reproduced by VITRA in close cooperation with Prouvé’s family in the years following his death.

The office corner, a definite focal point in the apartment, features a painted beam that matches the colour of the kitchen cabinetry. Bespoke storage units by Humbert & Poyet make this space — which, given its positioning, could have been otherwise swallowed up as mere thoroughfare — wonderfully functional. The patinated bronze niche is from La Forge de Style.

The living room features a continuation of the waxed concrete flooring, some large and striking photography (“Men In The Cities” by Robert Longo), and a three-stemmed floor lamp by Venice-born designer Gino Sarfatti.

Outside on the conservatory terrace, furniture and decorative details are kept simple so as to not upstage those killer views of the Parisian cityscape. The sofa is Le Corbusier (LC5), the coffee table is the Pierro Lissoni model from CASSINA, and that grey armchair is a gorgeous sourced vintage model that pays homage to the owner’s love of old treasures.

The master bedroom extends the waxed concrete from the floor to the walls. This little oasis is furnished with a bespoke bed and headboard from Humbert & Poyet and dressed in luxurious linens from Ralph Lauren.

In the second bedroom, a daybed from Jean Prouvé makes this space perfect for an afternoon read or accommodating guests.

Love this space from Humbert & Poyet? Be sure to check out the team’s redesign of an art nouveau Parisian landmark.




Photos courtesy of Humbert & Poyet.