La Grande Vue 5A (LGV5) in Upper Fresnaye, Cape Town is a project by SAOTA architects. Stefan Antoni and his wife, Carla, have created a dreamy sky-high home that captures the feel of the beach and sea below by using levels and layers to spectacular spatial effect. A view that draws the eye across Cape Town’s Sea Point out towards Robben Island and beyond, as well as the intoxicating clarity of seaside light is what forced Stefan and Carla Antoni to demolish their small bachelor pad and build a new larger home for their growing family.

An Architect renowned for his ability to design homes for the most vertiginous of steep mountain sites, Stefan relished the challenge. “This was perhaps my most difficult project to date,” he admits. ‘The site is triangular so I had to come up with a design that used as much of the space within as possible.” The result is a building that undulates, wave-like in its design, with curvaceous balconies that project out into the site, making full use of the property’s constraints. The finished building incorporates Stefan’s dual-level penthouse, which includes two en-suite bedrooms, a living area and a kitchen on the first level, and a studio, third bedroom and garage on the lower level, as well as an apartment underneath. On the roof, accessed by stairs from the main living area, is a private swimming pool and sun terrace, complete with curtained four-poster sun beds and a view Stefan refers to as pure “Rio de Janeiro.” Inside the apartment, Stefan’s bold control of levels and layering have resulted in a remarkable, visually geometric and sculpted interior where spaces seem to unravel behind hollow display walls and ingeniously angled doorways and corridors. “I love creating mystery with spaces,” adds Stefan. “And although this site was one of our most complex to date, for me the one thing it did do was set up some of the most amazing spaces – corners, annexes and depth – that’s what I love about this house; the mystery and surprise.”

Adam Court of OKHA Interiors was given the job of creating a new range of furniture using the Antoni home as a canvas. “We worked brilliantly together – inspiring and challenging each other,” says Stefan. “We wanted to create a new and relaxed but sophisticated look for OKHA Interiors. One that was not only about individual pieces but about creating a totally new look and experience. We also wanted the interior to have a strong museum/gallery feel with pieces that, as stand-alone items, had gravitas and presence.” The final result is a balance between the functional and the eye-catching, from deep white-leather sofas filled with oversized rough over-dyed linen cushions to uneven mirror-glass wall installations that produce broken and abstract reflections reminiscent of Cubist artworks. Ethnic pieces found on exotic travels sit alongside David Reade glass pieces and stacked cubic frames, whilst cashmere throws, nougat-toned marble and deliciously deep pile rugs bring in that barefoot Donna Karan-esque flavour. “The key thing we were aiming for was not to make something obvious,” Stefan concludes. “We wanted to break free from the mould, create a piece of poetry that plays on light, space and geometry, and balances the primal quality of raw surfaces with modern elements.” A statement that reveals thinking on a totally sensual but precise wavelength.


Architects : SAOTA (Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen Architects) – Stefan Antoni

Interior Design : OKHA Interiors, Adam Court & Stefan Antoni

Photography : Stefan Antoni

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