The Nordic warmth of Denmark
Hjørring is a bustling town of 35,000 inhabitants in North Jutland, the northernmost region of Denmark. Life goes by slowly between football matches (every year it hosts the Dana Cup, one of the most important international youth football tournaments), games of golf and summer evenings enlivened by musicals and cabaret shows (for more than thirty years the town’s streets have hosted the enormously popular Summer Hjørring Revue).
If the findings of a UNESCO report are to be believed and Denmark is indeed the “happiest country in the world”, then Hjørring is a very special place with its strong focus on quality of living and its excellent public and social services.
This consideration was certainly in the minds of the owners of this apartment when they decided to settle down here. They were looking for high standards of comfort and well-being without sacrificing beauty and functionality. The starting point was an approximately 100 square metre apartment on the first floor of a typically Danish building. The apartment was originally stifled by an overpowering gable roof and a maze of small, dark and inconvenient rooms. The owners decided a radical change was in order, demolishing all the walls to allow light to flood in. At the same time, the floor space was significantly expanded by integrating an adjoining two-room apartment.
The result is a large, luminous space enhanced by a coat of white paint that has relieved the sensation of weight of the roof and makes the interior seem larger. The heart of the house, the open-plan living room and kitchen, has been transformed into a kind of loft where the family spend their day-to-day lives and meet friends. A large dining table that can seat eight to ten people serves as a link between the comfortable, informal conversation area and a super-professional kitchen that reflects the owners’ passion for fine cuisine.
The choice of furnishings also enhances the minimalist atmosphere running through the entire house. In keeping with the tenets of Nordic design, it adopts simple forms, straight lines, impeccably clean styling, never an exception to the rule, never a desire to step past the limits. The loft concept is only abandoned in the sleeping area, which consists of closed rooms – two bedrooms and two bathrooms.
One of the key features of the project is the use of Italian ceramic floor tiles (the Futura collection from Ceramiche Meridiana – Verde 1999) that run seamlessly throughout the house, from the living room to the bedrooms and the bathroom. These large-format tiles lend unity to all the rooms while at the same time enlivening the space through a skilful alternation of sizes (50×100 cm, 25×100 cm and 12.5×100 cm) and a surface that captures light, breaking it up into a myriad of reflections.
The colour grey – a constant feature of the interior décor that perfectly complements the sobriety and elegance of the furnishings – is illuminated with bright, vibrant tones on both the floors and the kitchen and bathroom walls thanks to the use of porcelain tiles with a special surface finish.
The glossy black of the upholstery and furniture and the red varnish of the flowerpots and accessories complete the colour palette of the interiors.
Last but not least, a splendid roof garden can be viewed through the large windows, further enhancing the sense of space that reigns inside the apartment. The sobriety of the overall design is reflected in the choice of low-maintenance plants.
Ceramiche Meridiana (Verde 1999), Futura series
12,5x100, 25x100, 50x100 cm
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): conforme
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): GA
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): conforme
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): conforme
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): conforme
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): R9
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): conforme