Open plan: Echlin debut Kenure House, a home centred on greenery

One townhouse and two mews houses, whose front facades were completely redesigned
Kenure House by Echlin was created by uniting three properties in West London: one townhouse and two mews houses, whose front facades were completely redesigned
(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

Openness and greenery are at the heart of every Echlin project, explain the young London-based design studio co-founders Mark O’Callaghan and Sam McNally, and their newest residential project is a true representation of that mantra. Created by the clever combination of three adjacent properties sitting on two parallel streets in West London’s Norland Conservation area, Kenure House is a clever transformation of a townhouse and two mews houses into a comfortable, modern family home.

‘Each façade tells a different part of the building’s history’, says O’Callaghan. ‘The front dates back to the 19th century whist the back is a completely new interpretation of a mews house. Neither shows a full indication of the contemporary and spacious home which lies beyond.’

Indeed, the plot created by this union is long but fairly narrow, giving an elegantly modest impression from the street’s carefully retained main façade. The house however spans an impressive 3,900 sq ft, five levels and five bedrooms, as well as several entertainment areas.

But its crowning glory sits with Echlin’s masterful handling of openings and natural light, in this narrow site that could have easily ended up dark and awkward. Light wells and courtyards dot the plans, while carefully removed walls and glass partitions ensure sunlight seeps everywhere that's needed, even on the lower floors.

‘At Kenure House there is immediate access to outside space from most parts of the house,' adds McNally, 'with four outdoor areas, and your eye is naturally drawn toward the green core.’ In total, there is over 650 sq ft of outside space in the house.

An entrance lounge, a garage and a large kitchen occupy the first floor; the main living area and two bedrooms sit on the first; while the second floor houses the master suite, dressing area and a roof terrace including a dedicate bath area. Meanwhile, a study area, two further bedrooms, a media room and utility area make for a lower ground level that doesn’t feel underground at all.

A rich material palette of marble, stone, linens, leather and timber create a tactile and warm interior environment. These are complemented by furniture that is either bespoke or carefully selected by the Echlin team, making this new London family house a true labour of love.

Front door, visitors are greeted by a generous lounge entrance area with an adjacent cloakroom

Once through the front door, visitors are greeted by a generous lounge entrance area with an adjacent cloakroom

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

A modern kitchen also sits on the ground floor, towards the rear of the property

A modern kitchen also sits on the ground floor, towards the rear of the property. It includes access to the garage next to it

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

The house features several openings and courtyards, which allow for views through and across levels

Openness was key to the design solution. The house features several openings and courtyards, which allow for views through and across levels

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

The house’s main living space is located on the first floor, and furnishings

The house’s main living space is located on the first floor, and furnishings were either selected or designed by Echlin

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

Such as the joinery for this home bar within the living space

The building indeed features many bespoke elements, such as the joinery for this home bar within the living space

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

Such as this bedroom, are well lit by a courtyard cut through the plan and reaching down below ground level

The lower ground floor’s flexible spaces, such as this bedroom, are well lit by a courtyard cut through the plan and reaching down below ground level

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

86 Echlin Kenurehouse Exterior Princedale Terrace

Meanwhile at the top of the house, a roof terrace is the extension of an impressive bath area for the master suite below

(Image credit: Nathalie Priem)

INFORMATION

For more information, visit Echlin’s website (opens in new tab)

Photography: Nathalie Priem

Ellie Stathaki is the Architecture Editor at Wallpaper*. She trained as an architect at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and studied architectural history at the Bartlett in London. Now an established journalist, she has been a member of the Wallpaper* team since 2006, visiting buildings across the globe and interviewing leading architects such as Tadao Ando and Rem Koolhaas. Ellie has also taken part in judging panels, moderated events, curated shows and contributed in books, such as The Contemporary House (Thames & Hudson, 2018) and Glenn Sestig Architecture Diary (2020).