Team Simone Haag 

Fiona Storey 

Shortlisted - Residential Interior Curation

The Penthouse exemplifies Melbourne’s sartorial architectural style and the graceful modernity that defines some of the city’s most iconic heritage buildings. Adorned in meticulously restored visual markers and elegant expressions of its 1920’s origins, the building has been reconfigured to define 3 separate residences — a penthouse across its three top levels and two separate apartments below.

Behind its heritage facade, soaring spatial volumes are illuminated by natural light which cascades uninterrupted through black casement windows onto clean white walls, precise white joinery, honed marble bench tops and wide plank timber floors. The resulting atmosphere is sophisticated and urbane with distinctly domestic overtures, an environment perfectly aligned for displaying art and treasured objects which form the inspiration for a palette extending from them - warm mustards and royal blue. Those early touchtones evolved further to embrace the clients love of colour and predilection for patterns.

Through diligent planning and resourceful procurement methods leveraging relationships and track record, a curation of pieces were selected efficiently with everything unfolding from a cache of the client’s bolder choices. Seamlessly navigating access challenges (the densely urban location and heritage constraints required meticulous and creative facilitation to ensure larger furniture items could be craned in through outdoor terraces or assembled in situ), each of the three residences have been completed to share a visual language while finding subtle differences to reflect scale, layout and personal rituals.

Continuing the signature alchemy of vintage and contemporary furniture, lighting and objects Simone Haag has become renowned for, an antipodean quality radiates from boldly patterned floor coverings from Halcyon Lake and Armadillo and Co; carefully placed mirrors which absorb the patterns and textures in their vicinity while elevating them through frames bearing 1920’s shapes; and a spectrum of mustards, blues, ochres and greens tempered by symmetry and the nearness of monochromatic pieces. A side table by Richard Yasmine unites pattern and form while a black and white bench seat yields again to aesthetics and use doubling as a bridge table when the client has friends over for a game night. Bringing the ambiance continually back to comfort are such pillars as a Maker & Son sofa, B&B Italia outdoor furniture and key pieces from retro and antique furniture mecca, Geoffrey Hatty.

Across a collection of moments which serve to draw navigation fluidly through an enfilade of rooms, The Penthouse’s separate residences have been brought into accord with each other and with the genesis of the building itself through interior decoration which has forged an intentional alliance between eras, place and personal style.