Charu Gandhi's latest work of art

Monday 25 Nov 2013

Handpicked artworks inspire bespoke furnishings in opulent London townhouse

Chapman House is the latest high-end development by Morpheus in South Kensington and the culminating element in the company's Chelsea Townhouses project. The residence, originally conceptualised by MMM Architects, has been elegantly interior designed by Morpheus' in-house design team in only 10 weeks and is situated metres from South Kensington underground station, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the cultural delights of Exhibition Road.

Once Morpheus acquired the prime site adjacent to fine jeweller Theo Fennell, down came the derelict properties that occupied the plot and up went the three contemporary new townhouses. The latest, Chapman House, comprises four en-suite bedrooms, an entertainment room below-ground, a cosy snug with climate-controlled champagne wall, and a generous lounge with screened-off dining room.

The facades are banded by timber louvres, encasing exposed water pipes on the building's exterior and giving warmth to the project's outward face. The interior finishes soon whip you away from this reserved aesthetic with richer tones and luxurious fabrics.

Charu Gandhi joined Morpheus as Head of Design from Candy and Candy and this is the first of the three new-build residences she has worked on directly, the others (Anderson and Beau) both now sold to new owners.

It's the tactile nature of this box-fresh residence that is noteworthy, with every surface leaving your fingertips itching to reach out towards the sumptuous - and very expensive - fabrics. I mention this to Gandhi who implores me to touch the curtains, the walls, the bedcovers, as this is the sign of a successful project; it should make people want to reach out and touch. 

From Venetian polished plaster in the deepest chocolate hues to delicate autumnal shades on the walls, colour plays a leading role in the story of Chapman House. Gandhi explains how Morpheus worked with two leading London art galleries - Osborne Samuel and ArtBridge - to hang specific pieces that inspire the look and feel of each room.

For example, below ground is an opulent entertainment room complete with big screen, wet bar and suede wallpaper. Taking pride of place opposite the grand screen is a stunning piece depicting an athletic steed moving gracefully through water, the background an amalgamation of turquoise and royal-blue tones.           

One particular hue has been taken from this masterpiece and drawn into bespoke furnishings created for the room. I am heartily informed that this is next season’s trending shade. While the majority of finishes across the six floors (there is a lift for those in a hurry) are pared back, accents of colour permeate through artwork and soft furnishings, with soft pinks in one bedroom and deep wine hues in another.

The three Chelsea Townhouses speak to one another with a similar style but subtle differences, for example Anderson House has a private rooftop terrace, whereas Beau and Chapman do not. Each also takes a historical figure as its point of inspiration, with the final residence referencing the life of Colin Chapman, founder of Lotus Cars.

Well-known for his keen eye for design, Chapman is recognised for his design and engineering knowledge, with a creative flair that has been stitched into Morpheus' latest scheme. The developer has already received a number of offers for this sumptuous new townhouse and with MMM's refined aesthetic and Gandhi's elegant interiors, it won't be on the market for long. 

Sian Disson
News Editor

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