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Mosa’s Green-Forever Tile Outfits Two Homes Imaginatively Repurposed from Antiquity

See how a down-at-the-heels London water tower became a chic modern home, and how two fieldstone farmhouses in the south of France were cannily connected with a modern addition.

Mosa, the Dutch heritage tile brand, makes the world’s only Cradle to Cradle Certified porcelain tile. They are known for supplying high-profile green building projects worldwide including airports, railroad stations, educational and healthcare facilities, hospitality, office and retail spaces. Mosa tile, which has won many top design awards, also fits beautifully into residential settings. Two particularly clever renovations are profiled on Mosa’s website in their “inspirations” area. Both are fascinating and have in common the theme of transformation, repurposing beautiful old structures into houses that fit a modern lifestyle.

In central London, the owners of an amazing residence spent several months transforming, from its original state, an old water tower. The structure was an architectural remnant of the 19th century that had long been left untouched until they took it on in a massive renovation that left all of the charm of the old, while integrating state-of-the-art finishes including wide open glass walls and sleek flooring of Mosa’s Terra XXL performance porcelain.

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ACR Architects

It was an uphill battle that started with massive cleanup and finished with a modern living space boasting four bedrooms, a gym, a rooftop terrace, a functioning elevator and spacious bathrooms. The owners used Mosa tiles for the bathrooms, the kitchen and the terrace. “It was a struggle choosing all the right materials, but in the end these porcelain tiles fit in perfectly,” said the owners, who chose mid grey Mosa Terra Maestricht porcelain for its light, bright and distinctive appearance. “It enhances the calm atmosphere and lets the building and interior stand out.” The tiles are frost-resistant, allowing them to extend the flooring onto the terrace to create a spacious feeling.

Water-Tower-London-04
ACR Architects
Water-Tower-London-02
ACR Architects

The resulting home is not only striking, but also offers jaw-dropping views. Crowning the massive tower is a former water tank, that with the inspired addition of six windows now offers a 360° view of London like no other. It’s an architectural feat destined to remain a legendary London landmark for centuries to come.

The second featured residential transformation is ‘Maison Z in the south of France, on a site that is home to several ancient fieldstone farmhouses. The aim of the project was to connect the two main buildings into one via new construction. By skillfully juxtaposing the ancient structures with new construction, architect Gil Percal managed to ensure that all rooms are at the heart of the dwelling, gathered in an open-plan space that includes a living room, dining room, and open kitchen. This new construction has an exposed structure from the outside, which is emphasized by a metal beam, round, steel poles, and floor-to-ceiling windows.

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Gil Percal Architecte

This new space enjoys a panoramic view to the outdoors and the floor is covered with mid-grey 36-inch square tiles from Mosa’s Ultragres Terra XXL collection. Beyond the windows, the floor leads seamlessly onto an outdoor terrace that features matching tiles placed on pedestals. The absence of a threshold yields a seamless floor. “There are two reasons for choosing these tiles. First, they are less costly to remove if work needs to be done on the under-floor heating system. And secondly, the follow-up of collections at Mosa ensures that we can find the same tones and dimensions of the different tiles used, even in a few years and despite our location in France,” explains architect Gil Percal.

The breathtaking view of the site, including the swimming pool below which is bordered by tiles from the Ultragres Terra Maestricht collection in anthracite. These also adorn the floor of the pool house, a new construction that is open on two sides. Walls were erected on the two remaining sides of the pool house and decorated with stones recovered from the demolition areas to reflect the architectural language of the two main buildings.

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Gil Percal Architecte
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Gil Percal Architecte

There is additional use of Mosa tile on floors and walls throughout the dwelling. Even a stairway is adorned with porcelain treads from the Terra XL collection in order to retain tonal uniformity. The architect adds, “The different collections of tiles by Mosa imbue the pure ceramic floors with a certain mineral quality, striking the perfect harmony between three contemporary materials – glass, metal, and wood – found on the stone walls of the old construction.” Mosa creates modern, practical and sustainable designs that blend beautifully with even the most ancient buildings, because they are created with the stuff of the earth: the very same clay, sand and minerals that lend beauty to these old homes also give them new life in the 21st century. For more on these two ancient-to-modern renovations, visit mosa.com.


For more information on the Water Tower project, click here.

For more information on the Maison Z project, click here.

 

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