When you think of Minsk, the uneventful capital of Belarus, while interior design excellence doesn’t immediately come to mind, you may have to reconsider when you have a look at this meticulously crafted apartment by local ZROBYM Architects. Named the Buddha Apartment, the one-bedroom property was recently renovated to accommodate a couple who requested a home of contemporary comforts that combines a minimalist design aesthetic with a sense of cosiness.
The renovation’s major spatial intervention was the separation of the apartment's front area into two distinct zones of roughly equal dimensions to accommodate the living room and kitchen-cum-dining room. Although divided by a partition wall, the two rooms are not completely disconnected, with ample space on either side of the partitioning wall that allows the easy movement between the two spaces and ensures their visual connection. Other changes to the sixty square meter apartment’s layout include the introduction of a dressing room accessed through the bedroom, and the unification of the previously separated bathroom and lavatory into a single space.
A neutral colour palette of whites and greys, complemented by the natural tones of the parquet flooring, envelopes the apartment in an ascetic ambience of refined elegance. A similar palette of white, greys and wood is also prevalent in the apartment’s furnishings exemplified by the cubist living room corner sofa in light grey, the off-white curtains and the slim metal-framed bookcase in the hallway. Meanwhile, sage-coloured cupboards and blue-green geometric floor tiles differentiate the kitchen area and provide visual variation without being overpowering.
Although the décor is modern and unpretentious, epitomizing a less is more approach, the designers have included a few flourishes like the oversized ornate ceiling rosettes in the living room and bedroom, whimsically coupled with oversized opal glass globes, and the large cavetto ceiling cornice that softens the minimalist sensibility of the interior design. Slim lighting rods on the walls, lush potted Areca palms and an eclectic selection of contemporary artworks complete this Belarusian apartment of idiosyncratic sophistication.