Tastefully renovated residence in Marseilles

Located by the beaches of the Prado in Marseilles, France this former smallholding flanked by a stable was renovated in three steps by French architect Maurice Padovani. At the very end of the nineties, the young family setting up on the first floor gladly agreed to the two children sharing the same room for a time. The volume is then entirely freed from all its partitions and false-ceilings thus revealing a rich and space-structuring framework. Behind the complexity of the assembling of beams and joists, the parents’ bedroom slips in; open to the living room and accessible by a metal stairway.

The main wall’s top is entirely open and the old staircase, formerly external, is integrated to the house’s volume thanks to the installation of galvanized steel bays which oblique uprights give rhythm to the surface.A few years later, the couple acquires the house’s semi basement as well as an adjoining outbuilding. This time again, the main walls are wide open in order to ease the passage of light and new steel bays, as an echo to the first installation, substitute themselves to masonry. The “cooking”, “meal” and “living room” functions can there from move down to the entire ground floor. There again, to guarantee the freest flow between the spaces, every partition is removed.

The little garden’s terrace, layed out during the same building campaign is covered with large ipé blades and the same wood, on the same level, is used for the entire semi basement in order to insure a continuance in reading and feelings. The big wall standing between the house and the now linked outbuilding is covered with a gouged mdf wainscot because of a recurring moisture that is impossible to resorb. The installation of this panel slightly apart from the wall creates an air flow that suppresses the effects of humidity. The panel surface’s undulating relief makes it vibrate under the light.

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