The apartment is located near the Podgórze Market Square in Cracow. Podgórze as a district is very different in its atmosphere from other parts of the city. Here life flows a little slower around the greenery of Bednarski Park, charming pastry shops and exotic restaurants. Walking down Kalwaryjska Street, we will move for a moment to the times before the existence of shopping malls, because you can buy almost anything here!
Jakub Rej and Rafal Krupinski architects from ikra Studio decided to make maximum use of the space measuring less than 40 square meters. They managed to create a functional apartment where you can find everything you need.
Basia Hyjek: What was the main inspiration for this project?
ikra Studio: The project was carried out in the Podgórze district of Cracow. It was the district of Cracow located on the right bank of the Vistula River that inspired the project. We wanted to smuggle a particle of the environment into the interior located in a renovated tenement.
The design assumption was to make maximum use of the small area of the apartment, while maintaining its spaciousness
photo: Jakub Rej, Jan Krupa
Basia: What were the expectations and needs of the investors?
ikra Studio: The investors wanted the studio to serve two functions - as an apartment for short-term rental on weekends, and during the week to serve the investor's family, helping to take care of the children. The design premise was to make maximum use of the small size of the apartment, while maintaining its spaciousness.
Taking advantage of the height of the studio, an additional bedroom was designed on the mezzanine level. The bathroom was enlarged at the expense of the kitchen, and the entrance to it was hidden in a place behind a steel staircase. A large opening in the central part of the room was filled with a plywood structure, on which the TV and RTV cabinet are placed. The dual function of the apartment required the organization of places to store bedding or household accessories. They allow an easier way to keep the bachelor's room tidy, as well as to prepare it for the next guests.
A characteristic point of Podgórze is the neo-Gothic St. Joseph's Church. In reference to the patina color of the Podgórze temple's roof, the entrance area is finished in mint color
Photo: Jakub Rej, Jan Krupa
Basia: Where did the idea for such a combination of colors, patterns and materials come from?
ikra Studio: The premise of the project was to separate functions with material. The characteristic point of Podgórze is the neo-Gothic St. Joseph's Church. In reference to the patina color of the Podgórze temple's roof, the entrance area was finished in mint color, the mezzanine recess was filled with plywood panels, and the living area is decorated with oak parquet flooring laid in a herringbone pattern. A white powder-coated steel staircase leads to the mezzanine level, behind which the entrance to the bathroom is hidden.
Basia: What gave you the most satisfaction in creating this project, and what was the biggest challenge?
ikra Studio: In addition to the clean division into functions in the apartment, we tried to hide all the imperfections we found. In the entrance area there were faults in the wall and an electric cabinet that was not very attractive. By designing a mezzanine and custom built-ins, we were able to fill the recess space with a deep closet, and we replaced the door of the electrical box with a frame-colored furniture board. We also wanted to include Polish accents in the interior. In the investor's basement we found three chairs from the 1960s designed by Rajmund Teofil Halas, which we restored, and on the walls we placed collages by Aleksandra Morawiak.
The smaller the apartment, the greater the importance of detail, solutions
© ikra Studio
Basia: Does the approach to designing such a small space differ in any way from designing larger spaces?
ikra Studio: The smaller the apartment, the greater the importance of detail, solutions. It is important to organize the space cleverly and functionally. Every object should have its place, especially if the apartment has a rental function.