Less is best at Mike Spink’s minimalist London home

Mike Spink and his team of architects are behind this refined contemporary house in London, as featured in the pages of the Wallpaper* September 2019 issue (W*246) – on newsstands now

White spiral staircase next to kitchen
Spink's latest residential offering is a small but perfectly formed private residence in London's Kensington
(Image credit: press)

Few practices explore architecture with the holistic approach and fervent passion of Spink. The British company weaves together refined, contemporary design with the time-honed expertise of a master builder under the leadership of Mike Spink; and Little Gem, a single-family home in West London’s Kensington, is the studio’s latest offering.

‘It is minimal in design, generous in scale’, says Spink, explaining that this project is all about ‘subtle materials, thoughtful design and precision of execution’. The two bedroom home may appear bijoux at a fairly compact 191 sq m, but a philosophy of ‘less is more’ was strongly embedded in its concept right from the start.

Open magazine spread showing interior pictures

Little Gem was the location of Wallpaper* September issue (W*246) interior design and fashion shoot

(Image credit: Adrien Dubost)

Spanning three levels, with private areas on the bright lower ground floor and social spaces above, the interior flows, connected through a central, white, sculptural staircase. Its centrepiece though, is the extra-generous oak-panelled master bedroom suite, which includes a Japanese style courtyard, walk-in wardrobe and Carrara marble bathroom area of a size typically found in dwellings several times larger than this one.

Large openings direct the eye out towards the rear garden, created by landscape specialist Christopher Bradley-Hole. Lead architect and designer Franz Borho – a former director at David Chipperfield – ensured everything exudes understated luxury and simplicity, while the interiors include bespoke furniture from the company’s ‘By Spink’ branch.

Curved white walls around spiral staircase

(Image credit: press)

Kitchen with large glass doors leading to outdoor terrace

(Image credit: press)

Close up of spiral staircase

(Image credit: press)

Outdoor terrace with table & chairs

(Image credit: press)

View from the top of the stairs

(Image credit: press)



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).