Inspired by the grandeur of historical rail travel and King’s Cross as a gateway destination to escape the city, the new residential development contrasts dramatic design features with moments of calm.
The redevelopment of the King’s Cross estate, to the north of the railway station, has seen the evolution of an extraordinary sequence of buildings which form part of one of the largest urban quarters delivered in central London in decades.
We were invited by developer Argent to design the interior spaces of LUMA, a residential building within the new campus with architecture by Squire & Partners. The building consists of two stepped blocks, one arranged over ten floors and the other over seven, with just over 60 apartments in total.
Taking inspiration from the area’s semi-industrial heritage, the graphic pattern of the metallic brise soleil screens on the façade reference the railway heritage, with a similar motif repeated in the communal lobby, where latticed screens are used to lightly partition the main reception from a lounge area.
The interior design offers a welcoming and multi-layered lobby that issues an open invitation to residents and their guests. The choice of masculine materials is balanced throughout with textural woodwork and joinery, as well as upholstered, comfortable seating.
Drawing upon the park views and the rich quality of natural light, apartments vary from one- to three-bedroom homes, penthouses, and mid-level flats with high ceilings and a mezzanine. The material palette is light, with pale joinery and tile work, with the key living spaces oriented towards the tall windows and balconies overlooking the greenery of the garden squares.
We have focused on using finishes and materials that are deliberately understated, natural and refined. The intentionally soft palette works well in this setting but also helps to create a sense of identity and character.
‘Each project we undertake has its own special story and sense of place.’