BATEK ARCHITEKTEN designed a townhouse in the central district Mitte in Berlin which contains two residential units and is organised under the distinct typology of upward tapering cubes stacked upon each other.
-text by the authors
The architecture office BATEK ARCHITEKTEN has completed a future-oriented new building for Berlin’s centrally located district Mitte. Architecture and interior design of the formally restraint yet spatially cleverly organized townhouse are by the Berlin-based architecture office. The new build containing two residential units fills a vacant plot against a fire wall in a typical Berlin courtyard. With the project RHE42 BATEK ARCHITEKTEN has created a high-quality living space within a small area in the middle of the city. Upward tapering cubes, stacked upon each other make up the distinct typology of the townhouse, which is a good example of contemporary urban densification. In addition to the architecture, also the interior design of RHE42 underlines the functional and consistently thought-through approach to spatial concepts by BATEK ARCHITEKTEN.
The four-storey structure is made of three boxes stacked on top of one another: the largest box at the bottom contains the ground and first floor; above are the other two boxes, each set back slightly from the one below. The facades have a uniform, coloured plaster finish, the floor-to-ceiling windows are flush with the outer walls. The offsetting of the cubic volumes affords terrace areas around each floor. The smaller of the two apartments (60 square metres) is on the ground floor and comes with an open-plan kitchen, living and dining area, plus bedroom and bathroom.
The larger apartment (130 square metres) extends across all three upper floors, with a small entrance on the ground floor. Access is via a straight stairway alongside the windowless fire wall. The floorplan is simply and coherently organised, it clearly divides functions according to floors. Unlike most town houses, the bedroom here is situated below the living room. On the first floor is the master bedroom with en suite bathroom, plus a guest bedroom with separate bathroom. BATEK ARCHITEKTEN have dedicated the entire second floor to an open plan kitchen, dining and living area. The space – which is extremely light anyway thanks to its large windows – opens upwards with a towering ceiling height of 6.3 metres topped with an additional window. This lends a light generosity to the space rarely found in new, inner-city buildings. The third floor is a mezzanine space looking down over the living area. Here is a home-office workspace with access to the roof terrace.
BATEK ARCHITEKTEN have integrated custom-made, built-in cupboards and shelves made from hand- lacquered MDF into rooms on all four floors. The material palette also includes natural coloured oak floorboards for all the floors and grey terrazzo panels in the wet areas of the bathrooms and kitchen zones. The balustrade and desk in the mezzanine are made of walnut. All the rooms are painted white with certain walls, in the kitchen and the bedroom for example, set back in a soft grey. The en suite bathroom is painted in pale pink and the staircase balustrade on the first floor is picked out in a bright, glowing yellow.
BATEK ARCHITEKTEN is an office for interior design and architecture, located in Berlin. The portfolio comprises public and private projects including apartments and private houses, retail shops and surgeries, restaurants, hotels and offices. Frequently, BATEK ARCHITEKTEN works with existing spaces, which they develop further with a sensitive approach to the space and its specific character. The office also stands for a keen sense for materials, colours and light. The projects are characterized by a clean architectural structure and a conductive atmosphere. BATEK ARCHITEKTEN regard themselves as service providers: they realize the specific wishes and requirements of their customers individually and in highest quality and adapt their design to the respective conditions and requirements.
Facts & Credits
Project title RHE42
Typology Townhouse, residential
Location Mitte, Berlin, Germany
Date of completion October 2019
Area 190 sq.m. (130 sq.m. + 60 sq.m.)
Materials Plaster, hand-lacquered MDF, oak wood, terrazzo, walnut wood
Architecture firm BATEK ARCHITEKTEN
Project team Lukas de Pellegrin, Patrick Batek
Design of exterior areas Atelier Le Balto
Lighting concept PSLab
Photography Marcus Wend