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A smart renovation by Negar Reihani gave a 30-year-old space a fresh new personality.
Photography by Colin Perry
As someone who is soundly in her 30s, it’s been tough for me to come to terms with the fact that a 30-year-old condo could be considered out-of-date and dowdybut looking at the fresh new look Negar Reihani, principal of Space Harmony brought to this downtown Vancouver remodel, its hard to argue that it’s not an improvement. Chalk one up for youth.
What was once a cramped, awkwardly laid-out space is now bright and contemporary, exactly what the young couple living here wanted. “Call it ‘semi-minimalist,” laughs Reihani. She knocked out as many walls as possible to open up the layout, which now lets in ample light and views from every angle. “The kitchen looked bigger, the dining room looked bigger, and you have immediate view of both sides of the city and the ocean at the same time,” Reihani explains. A white-on-white palette with a few key popslike yellow dining chairs, or confetti-flecked backsplash from Stone Tilekeeps it both fresh and fun.
Some of the “old” (ouch) details are reimagined with a modern twist. A simple herringbone pattern made from oak flooring is an update of the suite’s original parquet floors; bronze wall mirrors were replaced with clear ones.
In the now-enlarged kitchen, a dining table extends right from the cabinetry.
In the ensuite, a peekaboo shower is visible through wooden slats (which adds a nice architectural detail from the bedroom side, too). The original shower was only 30-square-inches, so Reihani borrowed space from the bedroom and closet to create a bigger, enclosed shower with an alcove bench. “Now it feels like one of those old hammams,” says the designer. The tub, on the other side of the room by the window, was raised to create beautiful focal point.
Another key detail in the bathroom is the fluted cabinetry, which perfectly exemplifies Reihani’s smart high-low design philosophy. “They were pricey to make in terms of millwork, but we wanted to create something different that was high end and highlighted an attention to detail,” she points out. “In any project, there are areas to save money on, and areas to spend money on.” Speaking as a wise old women: it was money well spent.
Contractor: Cube 4 Construction Millwork: Quality CabinetsInterior Design: Space Harmony Inc.
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