Palazzo Manassei Penthouse

Designed by: CARLO BERARDUCCI Architecture
For client: Private Floor area: 450.00 M² Year of completion: 2019
Submitted for: Large Apartment of the Year

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

Looking from the open kitchen through the dining and living room.

About the Project

The design theme of the relationship between old and new in the sixteenth-century Palazzo Manassei renovation has been addressed through the elimination of any non-structural part built later to find back the integrity of the original spaces enclosed only by load-bearing walls. The challenge has been to reconstruct the minimum of walls without interfering with the structure of the spaces in order to obtain interconnected open space environments as open and communicating as possible with a warm atmosphere created by raw and natural materials.

The spaces are distributed on two levels with the entrance, a hall, a small independent guest apartment, and a family living room with TV and fireplace which leads to the master bedroom on one side and go up to the double height attic spaces on the other. All the living areas are interconnected between each other with a spatial continuity among the living room, the studio above, the dining area and a large open kitchen screened by sliding glass doors.

Only two partitions designed as backdrops are reconstructed within the space of the dining room and the master bedroom without joining the perimeter walls, therefore without separating the space, but only shielding the service functions enclosed behind them. In the dining area a large scenographic table reproduces an inaccurate map of Italy memory of the globes and geographical maps often found in Renaissance palaces, whose unexpected form invites an informal and dynamic use.

What’s unique about it

The goal of the project was to create a contemporary space for living, with flexible, open spaces interconnected with each other within the original space of the sixteenth century palace. An innovative approach aimed to find back the original essence of the spaces in respect of the original structures. The materials used are raw and natural as they should have been originaly. Cement plaster, floors and ceilings in brushed wood, natural stone with different finishes as consumed by time, splitted, brushed, bush-hammered and polished, and sheets of flamed and brass-plated iron, together with the velvets and leather of sofas and armchairs, create all together a warm and antique effect with a contemporary language.

Hidden from view advanced technological systems such as radiant floor heating and cooling together with an air dehumidification system ensures optimal environmental comfort, a dust extraction system hidden in the masonry allows simple daily cleaning, while cinema projectors and screens descend through invisible slots in the ceiling, and an integrated system control allows to control the home remotely via the smartphone.

The informal, fluid, open and dynamic nature of the spaces that open up to view according to a cinematic succession together with unexpected elements such as an oversized lamp beside the fireplace and the huge ricing red Italia table give rise to to a warm, welcoming environment that puts you at ease and invites to an open and stimulating sociality.

191016 Manassei Plan
© Carlo Berarducci Architecture


© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The terrace connected with the dining room overlooking the old town.

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The dining room with the Italia table as a memory of the globes and geographical maps that use to be in the rainassance palazzo.

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The living room area looking the dining room and the open kitchen at the bottom with the studio on the mezanine and a fireplace crossing all the space

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The family room loking towards the living room upstair.

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The master bedroom looking the timber covered partition designed as backdrops shielding the bathroom and wardrobe on the back.

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The warm family living room with fireplace and an hidden tv and Carlo Mollino 40's armchairs and a oversized lamp

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The entrance hall with timber covering and brass-plated iron ceiling.

© Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

The double hight living room

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