High Flyers

21 images

When you buy an apartment in the Barbican, who better to help you restore it to its former glory than one of the original architects? The fortunes of the Barbican Estate, a huge, brutalist tangle of concrete high rises and walkways on the western fringe of the City of London, have gone up and down more than would seem decent in its brief 43-year history. But its recent refurbishment and a renewed appreciation of its Le Corbusier-inspired design ethos have driven its 2,014 apartments back to the very top of the property hot list. When Kathryn Williams and Craig Allen came to look for an apartment in the 35-acre estate in 1999, it was during one of the Barbican’s unfashionable lows, and there were plenty of places to choose from. These days they rarely come onto the market; when they do, they are fought over fiercely by architects, designers and artists. Williams is head of retail for the furniture company Knoll Studio, while Allen’s career has spanned the Conran Shop, Gucci, Linley and, most recently, Molton Brown, where he was creative director, so they are well aware of the Barbican’s design heritage. “The main towers have three floor plans, so it was a matter of deciding on which tower, which internal configuration and which level.” They narrowed it down to a two-bedroom corner apartment in the central tower, to be away from the roads, and on an upper level for the light. To be sympathetic to the architects’ original scheme, Williams and Allen tracked down one of their number, Frank Woods, who was able to advise on the earlier door styles and various appropriate fixtures and fittings. He also gave them an insight into the thought processes behind the development. Writer Vinny Lee - vinnylee@btinternet.com

1 2 »
  • 60722101
    Add to lightbox 60722101 View job
  • 60722102
    Add to lightbox 60722102 View job
  • 60722103
    Add to lightbox 60722103 View job
  • 60722104
    Add to lightbox 60722104 View job
  • 60722105
    Add to lightbox 60722105 View job
  • 60722106
    Add to lightbox 60722106 View job
  • 60722107
    Add to lightbox 60722107 View job
  • 60722108
    Add to lightbox 60722108 View job
  • 60722109
    Add to lightbox 60722109 View job
  • 60722110
    Add to lightbox 60722110 View job
  • 60722111
    Add to lightbox 60722111 View job
  • 60722112
    Add to lightbox 60722112 View job
  • 60722113
    Add to lightbox 60722113 View job
  • 60722114
    Add to lightbox 60722114 View job
  • 60722115
    Add to lightbox 60722115 View job
  • 60722116
    Add to lightbox 60722116 View job

1 2 »