Entering an apartment can unlock the door to the owner’s world, unveiling their personality traits, tastes and passions. Every interior we discover displays favourite pieces, souvenirs from a trip or family heirlooms that bring style to the apartment and create a unique ambiance.
In this Parisian apartment for rent, the details of the layout and the designer furniture chosen are hints of the owner’s special interest in contemporary art and architecture.
Why did you choose this apartment? What are its best features?
I chose this apartment for its location, right in the heart of Paris, by Place Vendôme, the Opera house and the main shopping area.
The high ceilings, mouldings, large windows and the openness of the space won me over.
When I came back to France after spending 10 years abroad, I was looking for a typical Parisian “home sweet home” feeling. I immediately fell in love with this apartment upon entering. It was completely empty when I bought it — just the four walls. I like that it is a comfortable place, full of light and even distribution of space. And the concierge is nice.
Do you know the history of the building? Any funny stories to tell us?
This building used to belong to a bank and was used as an office space. When I bought the apartment, the bank had turned the offices into an apartment building. All the neighbours did renovation work at the same time which made it easier to get acquainted with them and to help each other out.
Did you decorate this apartment yourself? What inspired you the most for the decoration of this apartment?
I have a passion for contemporary art and architecture. I have travelled the world to see for myself great buildings designed by Rem Koolhaas, Jean Nouvel, Zaha Hadid and Sanaa among others. I also like the Bouroullec brothers’ and Danish design.
I have many books about art and architecture (that are now in Brazil with me), so it was essential for me to have a beautiful bookshelf.
I asked a friend of mine to design and decorate the apartment. She is an American architect who worked with Rem Koolhaas many years ago.
The bathroom lighting was inspired by James Turrell; the long dining table was designed by Jean Nouvel; the sofa by the Bouroullec brothers; the bedside table was designed as a sculpture. And the storage cabinets are very discreet and blend into the apartment.
What are your favourite items in this apartment?
I like the Bouroullec sofa; I have two of them in red in Rio because they’re so comfy! But my all-time favourite is the bookshelf that we call “Codec” because it looks like it has its own coded language with the lighting.
What do you like the most in this neighbourhood? Have you any addresses to recommend?
I love walking or biking in the neighbourhood.
I really like the Louvre museum, so I’d recommend meeting with friends at the museum and taking a stroll through the galleries. In every room, you will discover a masterpiece that you hadn’t noticed during previous visits.
I also suggest going to Bistro Volney (in the same street) where I go every time I am back in France.
A bit further away, I’d recommend the Palais de Tokyo and the Fondation Cartier.
Focus on architecture by…
Dutch architect and urban planner – Architecture theorist
Co-founded the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) with Elia and Zoe Zenghelis and Madelon Vriesendorp
Among his most notable achievements: Casa da Música (Porto), Central Library (Seattle), China Central Television (Beijing), De Rotterdam (Rotterdam), Fondation d’art contemporain des Galeries Lafayette (Paris), Fondazione Prada (Milan), Garage Museum of Contemporary Art (Moscou), …
Quote: “A building has at least two lives – the one imagined by its maker and the life it lives afterward – and they are never the same.”
French architect, designer & scenographer
Among his most notable achievements: Institut du Monde arabe (Paris), KKL (Suisse), Louvre Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi), Musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac (Paris), National Museum of Qatar (Doha), Musée Reina Sofía (Madrid), Agbar tower (Barcelone), …
Quote: “L’architecture est toujours une réponse donnée à une question qui n’est pas posée.”
An Anglo-Iraqi architect & urban planner; leading figure of the deconstructivist movement
Among her most notable achievements:Heydar Aliyev Center (Baku), Dongdaemun Design Plaza (Séoul), Guangzhou Opera House (Canton), MAXXI – Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo (Rome), Riverside Museum (Glasgow), Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art (Cincinnati), CMA-CGM tower (Marseille), …
Quote: “There are 360 degrees, so why stick to one?”
Japanese duo of architect-designers, founders of the agency Sejima and Nishizawa and Associates (SANAA)
Among their most notable achievements: 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art (Kanazawa), Gifu Kitagata (Motosu) apartments, Zollverein School of Management and Design (Essen), Louvre-Lens (Lens-Liévin), Kunstlinie Almere Flevoland (Almere), New Museum of Contemporary Art (New-York), Toledo Museum of Art (Tolède), …
Kazuyo Sejima’s quote: “As an architect, I feel it is part of our profession to use space as a medium to express our thoughts.”
Ryue Nishizawa’s quote: “Architecture has very broad repercussions. It is not only a private issue but also a social one.”