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Before and after : Saint-Josse 46

Before and after : Saint-Josse 46

In order for you to enjoy the quality of the L Residence services in the best neighbourhoods of the Belgian capital, we recently created new premium accommodations in Saint-Josse-ten-Noode. Some of you already lived in these new apartments, and their feedbacks are nothing but positive. Delighted that they enjoyed their stay with the L Residence quality of service, we wanted to tell you more about our unique vision in the housing sector, and particularly about our know-how in matter of building renovation. In this article, you will find the story of such a transformation. Here is how we provide the besthousing solutions for you, with premium quality in the best locations!

Why this neighborhood ?

Saint-Josse-ten-Noode, one of the 19 municipality of Brussels, is just nearby the extreme centre of the city. It’s the neighborhood that is becoming the most dynamic, especially when it comes to social and cultural life. Proof is that the price of the real estate market keeps increasing in a rather fast way (but no worries, L Residence ensure its premium quality at a reasonable cost, accessible to students too).

Our building is located in Saint-Josse 46, just nearby the neighborhoods Congrès and Royale. That’s just next to the cultural centre of the capital. You can visit many of the most famous Belgian museums : BOZAR, Magritte, MIMA, Belvue... and the wonderful parks and greenery : the royal park of Brussels, the botanic garden, the Marie-Louise park… Moreover, the location is perfect for the nearness to great pubs and nightclubs. With regard to the latter, you have many different moods only a few steps away. Techno, disco, 90’s… there is something for everyone!

At a closer scale, the building is surrounded with shops and restaurants. There are also many pubs and cafés that are very cool to discover. Not only the neighborhood is dynamic and vibrant, but the close vicinity of the building is calm and pleasant. Moreover, we designed our apartments for you to enjoy the most the calm and peacefulness of the area. As a matter of fact, our vision for the design and the furniture of these accommodations was a mix of what the town offers and the DNA of L Residence.

Our vision

For the apartments, we wanted to have a unique design, that represents the L Residence touch as well as the different influences of the neighborhood. According to us, Saint-Josse is above all a very dynamic and vibrant area, with great green places that provide a certain peace of mind. The architecture is a mix of a lot of different styles. There are Art-deco style, eclectic architecture, Horta style, Brussels houses… all of that under the eye of the skyscrapers of the Rogier district, that bring a very modern touch to this assembly. Therefore, we see in Saint-Josse a little bit of Brooklyn, the famous district of New York. That’s why we designed the 4 units in a Brooklyn style.

On the other hand, it was also important for us that the units have the L Residence touch, that is to say an inspiration between travel and business, with a premium quality standing. This is the reason why, in addition of having materials of a superior quality, all of the units are fully equipped, from the kitchen to the bathroom, and include a 43’’ TV where you can watch your favorite Netflix show!

Finally, we wanted these units to be beautifully decorated. The motto for these apartments is a “cosy yet mature universe”. When you pass the door, we wanted you to feel like you just stepped out of Brussels and have been transported across the ocean to the Big Apple, highlighted by our brick walls accents. There is also a warm wooden floor all around the units and the bathrooms are all designed around a beautiful terrazzo floor, which are some marble chips on the surface of concrete.

Some great partners

The original building was very old fashioned and outdated. However, the L Sphere team saw tremendous potential in it and we made the decision to renovate the entire building. To do so, we had to surround ourselves with the best providers. Indeed, we understood that in order for us to make this big project a hit, we had to be helped by experts. That’s why we firstly chose Archipure Concept to help us manage the entire project. They greatly participated in making this project a big success. For the overall architecture, we also decided to call STAMP, a Brussels modern architectural firm that really understood our vision.

Once the main work has been finished, we also collaborated with tasteful furniture suppliers. We chose MADE (that unfortunately no longer exists), to be advised about the atmosphere of the units (which colors, which interior style…). Finally, we also worked with Lulu, a home interior furniture company, to completely fill in your future apartments in the best way.

The outdoor work

The first step of the transformation, and not the least, was to renovate the entire facade. It took several weeks to completely remake the exterior wall and particularly the windows, but the outcome is worth it. The idea was simple : we wanted a bright and clean facade that really shows the modern transformation of the building, while keeping all the old architectural elements of it. We know that the first impression is always very important and we are glad of the result of this part of the work because the building now looks a lot more attractive.

Then, we also had to redo the roof. Indeed, the old one was in very bad condition, and we had to do a lot of work to improve insulation and sealing. It was necessary to render the roof and completely redo the insulation to bring the building up to standard.

@lresidence x archipure
@lresidence x archipure

The common areas and the 4 units

The indoor work was a big challenge for us. Indeed, even if we decided to keep some of the original features, such as the high ceiling spaces, the 6 meters-long balcony on the first floor, and the main stairs, which bring a certain charm to the building, while everything else has been renovated. We started by the common areas, that is to say the entrance room (because we kept the same main stairs), and then we began the work in the 4 units at the same time. Logically, we began with the ceilings and the walls, then the floors, then the main elements of the bathrooms and eventually the kitchens. At the end, we started to furnish and decorate the apartments.

1. The common areas

Concerning the work in the common areas, we kept the original staircase but we refurbished it. Concretely, that is to say we sanded it and repainted it. As far as the entrance is concerned, we have repainted the walls in white and we have completely redone the floor, putting terrazzo tile, which has the advantage of its solidity and its beautiful look (as a matter of fact, we put the same tiles as in the bathrooms).


2. A01 – The ground floor duplex

On the 1st floor, we had the idea of making a spacious duplex by completely renovating the basement, building stairs between it and the first floor and put the bedroom and the bathroom in it. It allowed us to create a true intimacy, the bedroom hidden downstairs looking like a sanctuary. However, it was not easy to transform the basement, which was in a very bad condition and did absolutely not look like a future bedroom, into a L Residence room. We firstly had to remake the walls and the floor. We chose to paint every single wall white to brighten and open up the space. 

For the ground floor, that was going to be the living room of the duplex, we decided to keep the brick wall but to make the bricks more apparent, to accentuate the Brooklyn style. We put parquet like in the bedroom and we painted the walls in white. To connect the electricity, we decided to show the apparent metal pipe on the brick because we found that this element integrated well in the style of the apartment.

A big challenge was the stairs between the living room and the bedroom, because we wanted them to be practical and easy to use, but we also wanted them not to take a lot of space. That’s why we decided to make straight stairs (not spiral) but cut them in half with a platform to go down in the opposite direction, which also takes less space.

In the basement, we also decided to put the bathroom next to the bedroom, as an "ensuite". We covered the walls in white tile and put terrazzo floor just like in the entrance of the building. For the shower, we wanted full glazed glass that stopped before the ceiling, in order not to give a confined feeling. Regarding the furniture and the equipment, we chose a modern and sober style, to suit the L Residence touch and to make this bathroom as spacious as possible.

Finally, to furnish and decorate this unit, we chose rather different styles between the bedroom and the living room. The idea was to create different atmospheres to really make this bedroom a little sanctuary. To do so, we put a cocooning and flowery wallpaper and soft furniture in the bedroom. On the contrary, regarding the living room we wanted something to make you feel like at home and to feel the dynamism of the Brooklyn style at the same time. Therefore, we chose cosy furniture (especially for the sofa and the carpet) and modern decorations (paintings, mosaic in the kitchen…).

3. A02 and A03 – The mezzanines

Regarding the 2nd and the 3rd floors, we wanted to create two identical studios with mezzanine, to optimize the available space. In fact, there were already mezzanines in these units, but the space was very badly organized (below, the space was too low, and the stairs took too much space). We decided to destroy the old structure and to create a new one, in a way that the stairs don’t spread in all the room and that the space below the mezzanines can be use. We therefore increased the height of it and we put the stairs on the side, with a little spiral effect.

To arrange the interior, it was also above all a matter of optimisation. We chose to make the space under the mezzanine a bathroom and a dressing room, to put the kitchen against the bathroom wall and to develop a spacious living room in the remaining space. To organise the mezzanine, we installed a low but very comfortable queen size bed and a modern and sleek look bedside table. We also took care to make this place a bright cocoon, with two wall-mounted lights.

About the living room, we adapted the style of the one of the 1st floor with the space that we had. To do so, we kept the idea of the apparent brick wall ground floor duplex, to create a cosy workspace. For the kitchen, we also copied the style of the duplex, but giving even more importance to the colorful mosaic, to strength the modern and dynamic look of the studios. We created a dining area with a high table near the kitchen, and added a TV stand against the wall and a round coffee table in front of the armchairs, to create a real living room spirit. Finally, the 3 big windows, 2 of which are with balconies, let loads of light enter the room. 

4. A04 – The hilltop duplex

About the 4th and 5th floors, we decided to create a duplex, with the living room and the kitchen on the 4th floor, and the bedroom, the bathroom and the dressing under the roof. Unlike the duplex of the ground floor, here the bedroom is above the living room, and we chose to keep the straight stairs between both floors. Why this choice? Despite appearances, for the same reason as the ground floor duplex: like the basement, the underside of the roof has a cute haven vibe, so we wanted to use that to make this bedroom a real sanctuary. However, we firstly had to completely redo both rooms and particularly the walls, that we had to plaster and paint in white, except for the brick wall of the future living room, that received the same treatment than the other brick walls. Of course, this was combined with the work on the insulation and the sealing of the roof. As you can see on the pictures, the gap between before and after the work is particularly evident.

Once the main work has been done, we still had to arrange and furniture the duplex. The logic was approximatively the same as for the first duplex, regarding the living room, the bedroom and the bathroom. However, unlike the first duplex, we benefit from the great light offered by the 3 large windows, combined with a wonderful view on the roofs of the city. Therefore, we ordered the same furniture but we changed the orientation of the layout, in order for you to benefit as much as possible from the light (the sofa is window-facing and the flat screen turns is back to the light). In the bedroom, we kept the roof window and we installed many lights, to improve the brightness.

To conclude

At the end of the work, we were so glad of the final result. The building and the 4 units have just the look that we wanted, mixing Brooklyn style and the L Residence touch. We would like to thank a lot the great partners that worked with us on this renovation: Archipure Concept, STAMP, MADE and Lulu. We let you with some pictures of the final result and remind you that you are more than welcome in the 4 apartments of Saint-Josse 46!