SKY VAULT

Chicago, Illinois

 

This new penthouse overlooks Lincoln Park and Lake Michigan. The owner obtained 4,000sf of raw space atop a luxury high-rise and wanted a contemporary residence that maximized expansive city and lake views.

 

The French-inspired building offered vaulted ceilings and arched windows reflecting the mansard roof. Influenced by these unalterable elements, the interior architecture expresses the vault detail in the ceilings and doorways throughout. These massive arches offer dramatic space for art and custom steel shelving, and balance the impact of the 14-foot ceilings.

 

Contemporary details are combined with traditional materials and form. A minimalist reveal is used in place of baseboards. Linear in-floor architectural lighting washes the walls, dramatic vaulted ceilings, and windows. The new design offers ample space for the owner’s art collection while maintaining an open plan. Oversized oak plank flooring provides a modern reinterpretation of herringbone and compliments the large scale space.

 

The edited material palette ensures design continuity throughout: European white oak floors, cabinets, and paneling; white plaster ceilings and walls; and porcelain marble slabs in bathrooms and kitchen. The veneer of the cabinets, panels and doors was carefully sourced to match the flooring.

 

Structural challenges influenced the design. Living spaces were located at the perimeter to maximize views, but utility stacks did not align with this plan. To overcome this challenge, we raised the master suite one step to allow for design flexibility and provide clearance to connect the new bathroom to the existing plumbing.

 

 

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