When Pepe Calderin first saw the condo he was most impressed with the views, which are truly spectacular. Unfortunately, there were also three tiny bedrooms crammed into the lower level, space-wasting hallways, an awkwardly placed kitchen, undersized baths, and cheesy builder fixtures and finishes. Calderin’s first step was to gut the developer’s layout and rethink it, turning the three bedrooms into two, relocating and refixturing the baths and kitchen, and opening the main level into one large, light-filled space.
The cream-through-deep-brown-hued entrance level has limestone floors and wenge-wood-paneled walls. A stunning limestone, glass and steel staircase leads down to the bedroom level and up to the rooftop terrace. The back wall of the stair-case is a focal point, a work of art woven of wood and steel that was created in Brazil, disassembled for shipping, and reassembled in its originally intended position against a background of programmed LED lighting that cycles through a color range or can be set to a particular color choice. A mini infinity-pool fountain burbles at the foot of the stairs, accompanying the changing lights. In the living area, a rambling leather and linen sectional sofa and deep leather armchair offer expansive views in every direction, including the outdoor sting room, with a pair of love seat and an ottoman/coffee table centered on an all-weather carpet set up on the adjoining covered terrace. With the press of a button, a screen and projector lower from the ceiling for television or DVD viewing from the cushy sofa.
The open kitchen is a welcoming and user-friendly as the living area, with zebrawood and frosted-glass cabinets, stainless-steel appliances (naturally, all top-of-the-line) and a wide gray-quartz freestanding counter with polished steel and leather barstools of such clean-lined modernism that they look like sculptures. A dining are large enough to hold a table for eight is at the opposite corner, offering city views through its glass walls. Should guests use the powder room they may disappear for quite some time. The fixtures are lovely, but the bug attraction is the opposite wall, which is entirely book-onyx wall that divides the bedroom from the spacious bath holds another technological marvel, an eye-level electrical fireplace with an amazingly realistic hologram fire that’s also visible from the sitting area or the bed.
As special as the apartment is, it’s the roof terrace, with its endless views, that knocks you off of your feet. A raised wood deck steps up to a good-sized infinity pool set at the very edge of the roof so that the pool water seems to spill off of the edge into the ocean 50 stories below. What Pepe Calderin has created is not just a beautifully designed space but also a gracious and comfortable home that seems to anticipate everything you might need- and has it in place before you know you need it, which is also, by the way, the definition of the perfect servant.
The retired couple wanted a home that was warm and inviting but still highly modern and unique. This home will be a getaway apartment from their house in the city. The home is located directly on the water and their views were very important to them so all seating arrangements and spaces were designed to maximize their ocean views. Because spatially, all the rooms were very large, we tried to create individual spaces within each room, making them more dynamic and functional. Light was key in the design’s home, both natural and in the incorporation of backlit and translucent materials such as glass and onyx. To offset the modernity and simplicity of the furniture and fixtures, we used lots of wood as well as a water feature below the glass staircase. This not only brought their ocean views indoors, but also allowed us to design some truly unique pieces.Location: Miami Beach, Florida, USA Designer: Pepe Calderin Design Project name: Akoya Residence Area: 6,000 sq. ft. Photographer: Barry Grossman Awards (for Akoya- Mayor Residence):
• International Interior Design Association (IIDA),
Best of Residential, Single-Family for Mayor Residence, 2008
• Americas Residential Property Awards,
Best Interior Design USA for Akoya Penthouse, 2009