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At the request of dissatisfied inhabitants— ROHD's mission was to revive the residential project by relieving the apartment from the poor structure and selection of furniture and replace it with assertive elegance. ROHD (Roland Helou Design), is the Beirut-based interior architecture and multidisciplinary design studio that rests on the aesthetic sensibility and design expertise of University of the Arts London master graduate Roland Helou.
With the two challenges of structure and choice of furniture in mind, ROHD envisioned a more spacious interior, using signature innovative techniques such as the bar annexed to dining table, and classic ones of using cabinets for storage to maximize space.
Those cabinets are all hidden, disguising as wood panels adorning the walls of the entrance and setting a cordial greeting tone. One of those panels doubles as a secret door to the living room and bedrooms area. Above, a panelling connects the entrance to the salon, extending to almost half of the latter, and ultimately transforming into an open library of brass and glass.
Now, fully in the first salon, the most impressive chimney wall that is covered in brushed Spanish Nero Marquina marble stands as a showpiece. Surrounding the chimney is black metal with a designed belt in brass, giving an aura of homey magnificence that is accentuated by four Tyria coffee tables of different heights and even material: all base in brass and top of either back-painted glass, ink blue, or Palissandro wood. Those tables are ROHD retrofuturistic pieces inspired by cinematic and medieval cults with vintage mirrors on the surface and a metallic base shaped into symmetrical spheres and sticks that look like mappings of the atom.
Trinity Side table of the first wave collection of RayXander, rests between the library wall and first salon.
Not to be outshined, the second salon also features a ROHD creation, the new Oriane oval table in brass and back-painted glass top, the distinctiveness of which lies in its thinness—and, of course, the unmistakable grace of the oval shape. Dialoguing the Oriane in this room are two Fauteuil de salon by Jean Prouve, Bidu side table by Baxter, Sultan Dog side table by Ibride, and colored side tables.
The apartment boasts ROHD’s latest design innovation, a dining bar annexing the bar to the dining table to maximize the use of space and ensure ease of circulation. The bar section is made of black onyx base, allowing it to be lit at night and consequently used as a lighting element with the lava stone counter-top. The bar stools used for the bar are the Aski Stools by Baxter. Part of the top of the bar extends to one end of the dining table, a 320 cm stretch made of palissandro wooden top and black metal base. For a sleek contrast, the leather break chairs from Bross are of a lighter color. Similarly, a feminine element, a Hawini artwork, rises behind the dinning bar, contrasting with its masculine air.
On top of the dining bar is an instant favorite piece. The customized Oberya pendant light is three meters long and a legitimate piece of art that is made of black metal covering a partial part of the bar and the dining table. The Oberya stands out as a hanging sculpture and a dominant element in a bold setting.
More than a 180 degree change, this ROHD revival project uses artful pieces and design techniques to breathe a new life into what once was unsatisfying interior, bringing it back to life and rendering it worthy of being called a living space.