Cascina Boffalora - Milan - Milano

Guided by the genius loci

In an original and faithful remodelling project in the heart of the Valle del Lambro in Brianza, the interiors of a typical Lombardy farmhouse blend fluidly into each other, under the harmonising influence of wood-effect porcelain tiling
Tosca Lei
Paola Chiaverano
Surfaces céramiques
Année de réalisation

The renovation work was completed in August 2014 in the Parco della Valle del Lambro in Brianza, one of Italy’s most surprising protected areas, comprising about 8,000 hectares of greenery nestling in the Region’s otherwise heavily urbanised landscape, which represents one of the most built-up areas in the country. This major environmental challenge was overcome about 30 years ago, and the park now plays host to a wide range of protected species and helps spread environmental culture by means of cultural initiatives taken in a traditionally industrial area. The Parco della Valle del Lambro is also known for its historical and cultural wealth, because it encompasses the 10th Century Castello di Monguzzo and a series of late neo-classical villas. These provided the inspiration for the restoration of the Cascina Boffalora, which was first built in the 1970s as a training centre. The architect behind the project was Paola Chiaverano, who had already designed the interiors of Villa Gernetto, also in Lesmo. The main aim was to harmonise the 20th Century building with the homes that pre-date it, with a view to creating a fluid unit that would not come into conflict with either the historic buildings or the natural setting. The key to achieving this was the architect’s decision to opt for a raised floor, designed in conjunction with Marazzi Engineering, and made with Treverk porcelain tiles from Marazzi, in a custom-made 15×60 cm floorboard format, which draw inspiration from the blemished texture and natural tones of wood. Wood flooring, after all, was also in fashion in the 1700s. The decision to opt for a raised floor, combined with the choice of wood-effect, through-body porcelain tile, not only preserved the original flooring system, but also provided a strong, durable covering capable of withstanding the frequent footfall that the building’s new role will attract. From a visual and stylistic point of view, the flooring generates a satisfying sense of continuity between the various rooms, whose new layout was made possible by the use of a single covering material for the whole building. Its light, natural tone provides a common thread between the Cascina Boffalora’s many rooms, and brings the same warmth and harmony to the offices, meeting rooms and conference halls alike. The tiles are available in six shades, from beige to wengé, and come with mosaic inserts that enhance the interpretation of wood. The juxtaposition of the new floor covering with a light, pastel-coloured plaster is also of neo-classical inspiration and is entirely in keeping with the refined elegance of the overall styling. The interior design, by contrast, is more disparate, and involves a fusion of designer pieces and classical elements, such as the traditional plateaux for the lighting, combined with the Carmel sofa and armchairs by Poliform, in a brilliant shade of orange. Similarly, the classical-style coffering, also in pastel colours and featuring gold-leaf frames, evokes the historical spirit of the place, which is still clearly perceptible in every room. The same mood is replicated in the bathrooms, where the flooring is darker than in the rest of the building, and the classical interior design elements contrast with the modern styling and high-tech look of the taps and fittings, and with the clean, understated and contemporary lines of the sanitaryware. The typically low ceilings of the farmhouse, which extends more horizontally than vertically, put the finishing touch to this sober, rigorous and warmly welcoming interior. Despite its non-residential vocation, the building shows the painstaking attention to detail and finish that’s more commonly associated with private homes.

Surfaces céramiques

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