Clockwise, from Above Left David Hotson, the architect, fashioned a home from a weirdly shaped, twisting and slanting space, all according to his client’s extraordinary advance math brief, incorporating a Bach partita, human genome and sonnet. Here is a view of the monotone TV room where a blue Moroso armchair pops;
A portion of the helical stainless steel slide that connects the four floors of the penthouse; One of the exits of the slide. Ghislaine Vinas, the interior designer, admits that its presence created a challenge for furniture placement in the rooms Left In the TV room, the grey Caresse by Frighhetto sofa is made cosy with pillows from Snurk. The slide was crafted by the same German company that manufactures similar pieces for artist Carsten Holler
Clockwise, from Left In the colour blocked breakfast area, Stack shelves by Raw Edges and Shay Alkalay from Established & Sons induce whimsy. The shamrock green table and chairs are placed below a plate installation conceptualised and executed by the interior designer’s team; The open plan island kitchen looks into the living room; In the reflection of an angular mirror, a stark white study area with a desk and canary yellow chair Right In the living room, two buttoned chairs, a 1919 design from Poltrona Frau, rests beside a large white top coffee table decorated with curios and books. The simple swing, custom designed for the space by UM Project, makes for a contrasting but playful element
HOME NEW YORK
Clockwise, from Left On a table full of retro and futuristic gadgets: The home owners turned a vintage Apple monitor into a cat bed; One of the exits of the slide. David believes it exemplifies the project as a portrait of the client – a fusion of mathematical rigour and brilliant lighthearted playfulness; The stairwell leads to the four floors, an alternative to the fun slide Left The large living room, originally drenched in Yves Klein Blue, was painted off white as per the owner’s suggestion. The high-tech Bang & Olufsen music player and BeoLab 5 speakers are in contrast with the classic black grand piano and Spun floor lamp from Flos. Next to the plush Paramount sofa by Frighetto is a figurine The Guest, a limited edition piece by Jaime Hayon for Lladro and glossy antique typewriter
a 7000 sq ft adult playpen complete with 12 climate control zones, lighting and sun control systems, and multiple audio and video channels, all managed from a smartphone
Two corridors of the house: Several pieces of art collected by the owners find pride of places in this futuristic home Left The “Everland” mural in the guest bedroom was created by DFC and Mexican photographer David Franco for Flavor Paper
tâ€™s the wildest penthouse apartment in Manhattan, perhaps the world – a 7,000 sq ft adult playpen complete with 12 climate control zones, lighting and sun control systems, and multiple audio and video channels, all managed from a smartphone. Thereâ€™s a helical stainless steel slide that whizzes you around and down through the four floors, a grand piano and a cat basket fashioned from a vintage iMac. Itâ€™s all quite incredible. But where else would one of the worldâ€™s most visionary computer scientists live when they arenâ€™t ensconced within the mysterious upper echelons of the Google empire? The owners – who value their anonymity as much as their impressive collection of pop art by the likes of Koons and Warhol – commissioned New York architect David Hotson and interior designer Ghislaine Vinas to create a home that, until a few years ago, would have been impossible to design and construct.
Mark C O’Flaherty: Tell us how you played around with technology to create this amazing space.
David Hotson: The building sits on a trapezoidal lot with a tapering roof and an early structural steel frame that twisted and leaned a little. Creating a precise digital scan of the gutted out shell allowed us to build an accurate 3D model of the interior and to use this to explore complex spatial compositions. But the most high-tech aspect is the space of the stairwell with its folds and facets intersecting volumes and aligned details, which could never have been achieved without digital technology.
MCO: Is there anything particularly high-tech about the furniture?
Ghislaine Vinas: No, nothing at all – in fact the approach was to play off the high tech architecture and make the furniture and finishes more fun and relaxed. It needed some quirk to soften the intensity of the architecture. The space is breathtaking but could have been terribly cold if we didnâ€™t really look at how to make the apartment comfortable and homey. Initially David had wanted there to be a sunken built-in banquet sort of sofa but I think it was important to have free standing furniture to â€œnormaliseâ€ things a little.