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    Olson Kundig's New York office includes a timber cityscape table

    Earthy tones and a wooden table in the shape of a cityscape feature in the Olson Kundig’s first New York office, which was designed with sensitivity to the 100-year-old building it occupies.

    Located in Midtown Manhattan, the office is spread across the 10th floor of a mid-rise tower constructed in 1923.
    The office features a central living room with a sculptural tableOlson Kundig – a studio with its primary offices in Seattle – created the interior to be its first New York City hub with a material and colour palette that responded to the building’s 100-year-old history.
    The open-plan office is defined by a central “living room” that features a 144-square-foot (13-square-metre) wooden table on wheels with a statement geometric cityscape.
    The cityscape was informed by the office’s New York locationCreated from raw timber offcuts, the table is divided into quarters for different configurations. It was designed by studio principal Tom Kundig and fabricated by Spearhead.

    “The design was the result of a conversation Alan [Maskin] and I had about our teacher, [the late architect] Astra Zarina, and our fond memories of gathering around the table at her home in the centre of Rome,” Kundig told Dezeen.
    “She always had a big pile of candles in the centre of the table, similar to the abstract masses at the centre of our table.”
    “We want to foster the same spirit of conversation and sharing between colleagues and collaborators in this new office space, so it was a natural place to draw inspiration.”
    An unenclosed kitchen is also located adjacent to the stationsA series of wooden workstations are arranged across the open-plan office, while conference rooms feature around its perimeter. An open kitchen is also located adjacent to the stations.
    Platforms are positioned above the workstations offering a display area for sculptures and models. According to the studio, this continues its tradition of integrating art into everyday life.

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    The office interior was designed to reflect its Manhattan location, rather than mirror the firm’s flagship office in Seattle, according to Kundig.
    “The existing shell of the office was largely concrete and glass. We added wood and warmer tones to soften the space, with natural materials to add texture and interest,” explained Alan Maskin, partner at the studio.
    Artwork is displayed around the officeA mixture of vintage and contemporary furniture was sourced locally from locations in Brooklyn and Tribeca.
    Like the Seattle office, the New York space will also host various art events, tying the otherwise-unique locations together.
    Wooden elements define the spaceOlson Kundig was founded in 2000. The firm has completed multiple international architecture projects including a beach house with louvred shutters in Sydney and a timber floating home in Seattle.
    Another practice that designed its own studio is Urselmann Interior, which created its office using only biodegradable and recycled materials.
    The photography is by Angela Hau.

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    Light and Air updates Financial District apartment with open floor plan

    Brooklyn studio Light and Air has renovated a loft in New York City’s financial district by removing partitions to create an open, inviting space.

    Occupying the 12th storey of a converted commercial building in one of Manhattan’s historic neighbourhoods, the apartment has generous windows and floor area, but previously made poor use of these qualities and felt cramped.
    The apartment occupies the 12th storey of a Manhattan building”The existing conditions stifled the unit’s access to light and air,” said the design team. The owners tapped Shane Neufeld, of  Brooklyn-based Light and Air Studio, to rethink the space.
    “The space featured a low-hanging storage loft that hovered over the entry and a sprawling closet that loudly commanded the center of the space, disrupting any potential for meaningful visual connections,” said Neufeld.
    It was updated to have an open floor plan”Our goal was to maintain the functionality of the storage loft while creating a more generous entry and rethinking the programming and materiality of the apartment in its entirety,” the designer added.

    The team removed many of the apartment’s internal walls and reduced the footprint of the overhead storage loft to allow taller ceilings. Within the reconfigured welcome area, custom closets, shelving, and a sculptural wooden bench provide plenty of storage, some behind a slatted wooden wall.
    A minimal material palette was used throughoutLight and Air also updated the flooring in this area, marking the transition between the concrete of the building’s corridors and the apartment’s hardwood. The polished concrete is also found in the kitchen and bathroom.
    Within the 1,200 square-foot (111-square-metre) apartment, Light and Air partitioned the space using open shelving, allowing some perspectives to stay open between the living room and bedroom.
    Custom desks were built into the space”Our strategy took the shape of an open floor plan with minimal partitions and reducing the existing material complexity through a more straightforward approach,” said Neufeld.
    The living and dining room is positioned in the corner of the unit and has windows facing in two different directions.
    “Two exterior walls with multiple southeast and southwest exposures allow for significant natural light and impressive views of lower Manhattan,” said Neufeld.

    Schissel Montgomery Architects renovates Brooklyn flat for art gallerist

    These spaces were connected to the kitchen, which remained in the same location, but was updated with matching cabinetry, new appliances, and an additional sink that provides more functionality.
    Throughout the apartment, the designers employed a minimal palette. The walls have no base moulding, there is flush cabinetry, and custom, built-in desks.
    Wood takes centre stage in the project”As one moves in and around the different elements (some floating effortlessly off the ground), its functional variety and formal character become more readily apparent,” Neufeld concluded.
    Light and Air studio, also known as L/AND/A, was founded in 2017. The firm also designed a townhouse in Brooklyn, with a skylight illuminating a central staircase.
    Other New York City apartment renovations include a “minimal but warm” apartment that was designed by Selma Akkari and Rawan Muqaddas, and a loft on Broadway that local studio Worrell Yeung reconfigured to meet the needs of a growing family.
    The photography is by Kevin Kunstadt.

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    Park Slope condo becomes New York City's “largest mass-timber building”

    Local studio Mesh Architectures has completed Timber House, a condominium in Brooklyn that developer The Brooklyn Home Company claims is “the largest mass timber building in New York City.”

    Timber House is made of glue-laminated timber, a type of structurally engineered wood used to make mass timber structures, and is the largest mass-timber project in New York City in terms of square footage and height, according to The Brooklyn Home Company.
    It is also the first condominium project in the city to be built using mass timber, the developer said.
    The building has 14 condos”Timber House started with the simple notion of creating a sense of life in a building, which engages, stimulates, and at the same time, calms us,” said Eric Lifton, founder and principal of Mesh Architectures.
    “The way we do that here is by using a plant as the primary building material.”

    The building’s columns, beams and floor plates are all mass timber, while the core had to be made of concrete masonry because of city restrictions, the studio said.
    The apartments stretch across the length of the structureTimber House is located in the residential Park Slope neighbourhood in Brooklyn and comprises 14 condos that stretch from the street-side to the back of the building.
    According to Mesh Architectures, the building was “constructed with passive house principles”.
    While not passive-house certified, it was built with solar photovoltaic panels on the roof to provide energy, and mineral wool and polyisocyanurate insulation to reduce the need for air conditioning.
    Heating and air conditioning is provided by air-source heat pumps.
    The building was developed in collaboration with The Brooklyn Home CompanyIt also features passive house-quality windows with triple glazing, and the 10 parking spaces in its ground-floor garage each have an electric charging station.
    The building’s facade is characterized by a flat face made with Danish brick that, according to the team, was chosen to integrate the building into the mostly brownstone neighbourhood.
    On the upper levels, the envelope is sculpted into jutting windows and recessed balconies with glass railings. The balconies’ undersides are wooden, giving the exterior palette a touch of the timber within.
    The floors are also made of woodA rooftop terrace provides views of Downtown Brooklyn and Manhattan.
    Inside, wooden walls and ceilings line the corridors, which have hexagonal tiling on the floor that was designed custom by Mesh and produced in Turkey.
    The condos have 11-feet-tall (3.3 metres-tall) ceilings and feature exposed timber beams with LED lights that are integrated directly into the wood.

    The Dezeen guide to mass timber in architecture

    The timber beams also extend down from the ceiling to frame some of the walls and windows, providing insight into the building’s structural makeup.
    “The exposed wooden beams present in the home create a style reminiscent of city living in the 1960s and ’70s when we picture those large loft-style residences, which is really special,” said Bill Caleo of The Brooklyn Home Company.
    “As a city, if we want to lower our carbon footprint we need to prioritize mass timber.”
    In addition to the ceiling and beams the condos have wooden accentsFlooring in the living areas is wood, while the kitchen is floored with white tile to match the white cabinetry – accented with natural wood tones – and a long, white island.
    Other recently-announced designs for mass timber structures include the world’s tallest timber building designed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen and a Henning Larsen-designed Volvo experience centre in Sweden.
    The photography is by Travis Mark. 

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    Bala's SoHo store by Ringo Studio features oversized fitness equipment

    Brooklyn-based Ringo Studio has created a pastel “playground” as the first retail space for fitness brand Bala in New York City, which includes scaled-up versions of its products.

    Founded by Natalie Holloway and Max Kislevitz, who appeared on reality TV show Shark Tank, Bala sells weights, bands and other fitness equipment in a range of candy colours.
    Bala’s New York City store includes giant versions of the brand’s fitness productsRingo Studio founder Madelynn Ringo, the former retail designer for cosmetics brand Glossier, cold-called the duo and asked them to keep her in mind when they opened their first physical retail space.
    So when the opportunity arose to take over a 1,300-square-foot (120-square-metre) space at 99 Spring Street in SoHo, Ringo was brought on to translate the brand’s aesthetic into interior design.
    A weighted ankle Bangle becomes a leather seat for customersThe products are typified by soft, rounded shapes, so these were replicated in features around the store.

    “The space invites visitors to work out amid scaled-up versions of Bala’s visually compelling products,” Ringo said. “These sculptural elements create nooks for testing, touching, and trying out in-person.”
    The entrance is via a black hoop that resembles Bala’s Power RingThe entrance to the store is under a black arch that resembles one of the brand’s signature products: The Power Ring.
    Beyond, a pale green counter displays a variety of weights in the same hue as its curved top. Further areas are also colour-matched with the items on show.
    Products are colour-coordinated with their display areas”Organised chromatically, distinct zones immerse visitors in the colour space of the band, heightening the sense of place and identification with the brand,” Ringo said.
    A giant 12-foot-tall version of the Bala Beam is propped up against a mirrored wall that is divided by vertical light strips.
    Mirrored walls allow customers to test out the products as if they were in a gymOn the opposite side, an oversized replica of a Bangle – used as ankle weight – swoops down from the ceiling to form a squishy leather seat.
    Through a pale blue arch is another space decorated entirely in pink, from the walls, ceiling and counter, to velvet fitting-room curtains and a furry carpet.

    Glossier Flagship in New York includes soft-pink plasterwork and a Boy Brow Room

    The space was fabricated by New York-based Konduit, which specialises in scenic design, curved surfaces and custom finishes.
    The team worked with Ringo Studio to match the distinct matte sheen and exact colours of the Bala products across the scaled-up design elements.
    At the back is an entirely pink room, hosting more products and fitting roomsOutside of retail hours, the store is also intended to host fitness programs that incorporate the various products.
    “It’s a Balacise playground to introduce customers to their innovative products and encourage them to test and experiment,” Ringo said.
    The back room is lined with a furry pink carpetPastels have been a popular choice of palette for stores and boutiques over the past few years, particularly in New York City.
    Brands like Everlane, The Arrivals, and of course, Glossier, all chose similarly soft shades for their shop interiors in the city.
    The photography is by Anna Morgowicz.

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    Concrete dominates INC Architecture & Design's offices in NYC

    The offices of INC Architecture & Design in New York City’s SoHo are filled with eclectic furniture and plants that contrast the primarily concrete interiors.

    INC, founded by architects Adam Rolston, Gabe Benroth and Drew Stuart, moved to a 1930s building on Varick Street after scaling up from its previous location on 19th Street.
    INC’s offices are located in a 1930s building on Varick StreetThe new space is dominated by concrete, which forms the walls, floors, ceilings, and nine mushroom columns that form square bays across the plan.
    “The space was peeled back to its essential architectural shell,” said the studio, which sandblasted the concrete to a raw finish.
    A grand marble-topped desk greets visitors upon arrivalMeanwhile, the flooring was polished to a soft sheen, to reflect the light pouring in from large windows along the west facade.

    Collaborative work areas are arranged along these windows. They range from a long communal table to informal lounges comprising an eclectic mix of vintage furniture.
    The studio stripped back the space to its concrete bones”The furnishings are decidedly residential in character and include antiques, custom upholstery, custom casegoods, custom raw silk rugs, polychrome raw leather, polished stainless steel, solid ash and polychrome marbles,” the team said.
    Upon entering the offices, a grand marble-topped desk supported on two polished-chrome cylinders is positioned in front of a dark green wall.
    Desks are lined up through the centre of the officeTo the right are conference rooms, divided by partition walls painted pale pink and lined with acoustic panels.
    A circular aperture provides a view from one meeting to a communal lounge on the other side.

    BIG moves New York office to bright space in Dumbo

    “Simple secondary architectural elements were developed to provide for the more private functional requirements of the studio, and to define spatial subdivisions which break down the space but that maintain the open studio format so critical to our way of working together,” INC said.
    Wooden desks are lined up in rows through the centre of the office, running from the collaborative areas to an expansive material bank on the opposite side.
    An expansive material bank is displayed towards the back of the spacePlants are used abundantly throughout the space, adding life and offering a contrast to the grey and brown tones.
    “Our space is filled with greenery, collected materials, prototypes, objects and details drawn from our projects, our wanderings and our passions,” said the INC team.
    Polished concrete floors reflect the light entering from large windowsOther offices of architecture firms in NYC include BIG’s bright space in Dumbo, while we rounded up 10 self-designed studios by architects and designers in a recent lookbook.
    The photography is by Eric Laignel.

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    Sella designs “post-pandemic” offices for Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners in Brooklyn

    London studio Sella has created office interiors for tech company Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners in Dumbo, New York City, with a focus on flexible and collaborative space to entice employees back to the workplace.

    The 3,000-square-foot (280-square-metre) office has a prime waterfront location at 10 Jay Street, inside a former sugar refinery overhauled by ODA Architecture in 2019.
    Sella designed the Sidewalk Infrastructure Projects offices with a focus on communal spaceDesigned during the coronavirus pandemic, the workspaces for Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners are open and flexible — more akin to a members club than a traditional office.
    “Sella sensitively evolved the design to create the first-generation post-pandemic office space, championing the merge of the workspace and membership culture within private office environments,” said the studio.
    The interiors are more akin to a members club than a tech startup officeTravel restrictions also meant that Sella had to execute the project from the UK, in collaboration with the New York office of architecture firm Gensler.

    Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners is a startup backed by Google’s parent company Alphabet, and a spin-off of smart cities initiative Sidewalk Labs.
    A kitchen area is arranged around a curved plaster wallAt its offices, the building’s industrial heritage is celebrated through exposed brick columns and poured concrete floors.
    A large area in the centre of the plan, for both employees and guests to congregate, is arranged around a tree.
    Taps are built into the wall for a minimal effectCustom banquettes, upholstered in fabrics by Dedar and Maharam, offer casual seating against the wall and beside the greenery. Opposite, the kitchen area is set against a gently arced partition between two brick columns.
    The curve is continued in the shape of walnut-fronted cabinets and a white, oval island that reaches bar height. Beer and kombucha taps and other hardware are plumbed directly into the wall for a clean, minimalist finish.
    Another curved wall leads to private work areasAnother new textured-plaster wall curves behind the kitchenette, leading employees to the more private work areas.
    “These casual break-out spaces linking with the more private, formal moments within the office were sensitively considered by Sella to push the brief of an office based on connection, born out of the pandemic,” said Sella.

    Sella Concept applies “cocoon of rich materials and colour” to interiors of east London office

    Meeting rooms are positioned along the glazed facade, overlooking the East River.
    An engineered bronze conference table with a leather-like top can be rolled along a track in the concrete floor, to facilitate larger board meetings when needed.
    Meeting rooms overlook the East RiverWarm neutral colours in all of the spaces are complemented by lighting from American brand Allied Maker, while quirky details include cabinet handles by UK-based Swarf Hardware.
    “With the ease of working from home, an office now needs to work harder to entice employees to connect with each other and with clients – thereby Sella’s design aims to incentivise behaviour with connectivity at its heart,” the studio said.
    A brass floor track allows conference tables to be joined together for large meetingsSella was founded by Tatjana von Stein and Gayle Noonan, and works across interiors, furniture, branding and set design.
    Interchangeably known as Sella Concept, the studio has also completed the London headquarters for fashion brand Sister Jane, a co-working space in the UK capital and a collection of curvaceous furniture.
    The photography is by Sean Davidson.

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    The New Work Project is a monochrome co-working space in Brooklyn

    A shared workspace for creatives has opened in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, with minimalist black and white interiors and gold-toned accents.

    The New Work Project is the brainchild of The New Design Project, a studio founded by Parsons graduates Fanny Abbes and James Davison.
    The stark colour scheme of The New Work Project becomes apparent upon entering the reception areaHaving worked in finance for a time, the duo returned to their design roots to set up the co-working space in a converted foundry building, and craft its interiors.
    They describe it as “a place for like-minded people to come together in an environment that is personal and intimate, and designed for collaboration”, adding that the space is “individually designed to inspire, stimulate, promote creativity and facilitate fluid working”.
    Members can choose from a variety of seating options in the open-plan spaceA largely monochrome theme is followed through the space — from walls and door frames to furniture to artworks — with light fixtures, flooring and decorative plants adding some colour.

    “Bold accents of black and gold are carried throughout the space with an overall modern approach to the design,” said the founders. “Clean lights are beautifully accentuated with track lighting against the white interiors.”
    Caned modernist chairs accompany a large meeting tableThe stark palette is evident immediately upon entering into a vestibule painted black on its three sides and ceiling.
    A reception desk has a pale marble top cut into an angular shape, and is lit by a thin linear fixture that runs up the wall and across the ceiling to form a 90-degree angle.
    Desks are arranged in U-shape configurations opposite a marble barBeyond is a lounge area, where four black-framed modernist chairs with caned backs and seats face a large upholstered ottoman.
    The dark central seating sits on a pale grey rug, as do a pair of styled coffee tables on either side.
    Private conference rooms can be booked for meetingsA larger meeting table surrounded by the same caned chairs is positioned in front of a series of private conference rooms, which are available for members to book for meetings.
    There’s also a trio of phone booth-style rooms from which individuals can take calls.
    Phone booths offer privacy for individual calls”The intimate ’boutique’ space creates a community environment while also creating a place for work and productivity,” the founders said.
    The remainder of the co-working space is open plan, with light wood flooring throughout and white on all of the walls except those painted black at each end.

    The Malin is designed as a vibrant but homely New York co-working space

    Tables are laid out in U-shape configurations, divided by black-tinted glass partitions where they face one another.
    Three-branched brass lights hang overhead, while lamps with globe-shaped bulbs are placed on each desk.
    Gold-toned accents are found throughout the spaceA marble bar, accompanied by a line of black stools, separates this work area from a kitchen for members to prepare and eat food.
    Some of the building’s original steel columns are left exposed, their rough surfaces contrasting with the white walls and marble counters.
    The monochrome scheme continues down to artworks and stylingNew York City has no shortage of co-working spaces. Many are similarly using design to entice members, like The Malin that recently opened in Soho.
    Our latest lookbook rounds up 10 shared workspaces around the world that offer a reprieve from the home office.

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    Rockwell Group takes maximalist approach to Japanese design at Katsuya NYC restaurant

    Elements of traditional Japanese architecture and design are combined and given a contemporary spin by New York studio Rockwell Group at this sushi restaurant in Manhattan.

    Katsuya is the latest restaurant of its name by chef Katsuya Uechi, following locations in Los Angeles, Miami and the Bahamas all serving sushi with a Californian twist.
    Katsuya serves Californian-influenced Japanese cuisine by chef Katsuya Uechi. This and top photos by Nikolas KoenigFor its interior, Rockwell Group looked to a variety of Japanese aesthetic traditions, and blended them together to create a theatrical experience.
    “The interior dining rooms take a maximalist approach to Japanese aesthetics, an entertaining departure from the contemporary minimalist vogue,” said the team.
    A long red-lacquered communal table occupies the centre of the dining room. Photo by Nikolas KoenigThe restaurant totals 6,890 square feet (640 square metres) and seats up to 305 diners. Guests enter past the sushi bar and lounge, which is set up for casual diners to enjoy light bites in view of the kitchen.

    In the main dining area, the space is divided into three sections by a pair arched openings and a series of translucent glass screens subtly printed with images of wagasa – Japanese umbrellas.
    Translucent screens divide up the hall-like spaceThe archways, shaped to reference torii and pagoda architecture, are trimmed with red lacquer and inlaid with square wooden tiles.
    Screens are suspended from a black powder-coated metal framework, reminiscent of kumiki wood joinery.
    Secluded banquettes are positioned towards the back. Photo by Emily AndrewsDominated by red, the central space has a long communal table, plus several two-tops and a trio of secluded banquettes towards the back.
    Small to medium-sized parties are accommodated in the section to the right, where the red tones are swapped for warm creams and the wagasa patterns appear again on the wallpaper.
    Several traditional Japanese wagara motifs decorate the wallsMore banquette niches are framed by curved ceilings, and decorated with other traditional wagara motifs and imagery of performers with fans.
    The final indoor dining area includes a variety of table sizes, as well as a robata grill – a specialty that the chef is “renowned for pioneering in the West” according to the team.
    A private dining room seats 10. Photo by Nikolas KoenigConcentric pendant lights by Allied Maker spotlight individual tables and booths throughout the restaurant.
    Meanwhile, the red-lacquered communal table is “illuminated by a custom chandelier with a lazily undulating form that appears like waves rendered in ink”.

    Rockwell Group models Casa Dani restaurant in New York on Andalusian patios

    A private dining room at the end of the hall-like restaurant features red-leather-backed chairs around a circular wooden table, which seats 10.
    In the warmer months, a terrace influenced by autumnal Japanese gardens will provide space for 98 guests outdoors.
    Screens are subtly printed with images of wagasa – Japanese umbrellasKatsuya opened in March 2022 as one of two full-service restaurants inside the Citizens food hall, located within the Manhattan West development between Hudson Yards and Penn Station.
    Rockwell Group was also responsible for the interior design of Citizens, as well as the other fine-dining option Casa Dani, which serves Andalusian cuisine in a setting to match.
    Allied Maker’s Concentric pendant lights are hung throughout the restaurantThe firm was founded by architect and designer David Rockwell in 1984, and is best known for hospitality projects, and production design for theatre and events.
    Its studios have recently collaborated with fellow designers Joyce Wang on the first Equinox Hotel, Yabu Pushelberg for the Moxy Chelsea hotel and Diller Scofidio + Renfro to build 15 Hudson Yards and The Shed – all in New York City.
    The photography is courtesy of Katsuya, unless stated otherwise.

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