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Family of 3 amplifies flat with a see-thru mezzanine core

When Miguel Ángel Borrás and Elodie Grammont bought their apartment in Barcelona’s Eixample district, it was divided into small rooms, a relic of its 19th-century design.

The two architects- co-founders of Miel Arquitectos*- knew they wanted to open it to let more daylight in, but rather than simply creating an open loft space they redefined the rules of privacy. “When you don’t need the toilet so closed or the bathroom isolated from the other things is when you find a way to live inside,” explains Miguel Ángel.

To let daylight into their more intimate living airs, they left the bathroom open to the living room (enclosed only by a glass window). They also left it open to their bedroom using a glass window and a large open doorway.

In this way, light flows through to these living areas allowing the couple plenty of natural light for showers, brushing teeth, dressing, etc.

The openness of the home also allows the city to enter their living space, or as Miguel Ángel describes it, allows their home to flow into the city. “When you break the edges between outside/inside, it makes the space bigger: at the end, our flat is as well the street.”

In this video, Miguel Ángel Borrás reveals a staircase “carpeted” in recycled tile, how a widening hallway makes the home feel larger, an open guest room directly above the open bathroom, and how all this openness not only lets light flow but allows the couple to keep a better eye on their daughter from anywhere in the home.

[*Miguel Ángel and Elodie also offer architectural walking tours of Barcelona, focused on Antoni Gaudi, Enric Miralles (Scottish Parliament), or Ildefons Cerdà (designer of their Eixample neighborhood)].