Situated on the beautiful Hayle estuary in Cornwall, this waterfront modern home is the newest project from Architects FCB studios (opens in new tab). The whole development has a very industrial, modern vibe, in keeping with the industrial heritage of the Cornish town and working fisherman quay (that's actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site) it overlooks.
FCB worked with Lydia Allen Interiors (opens in new tab) to decorate and style the inside of the homes. And despite the very industrial feel of the area and the exterior of the building, inside the homes are filled with light, bright rooms with a clear nod to the seaside location, with layers of textures and lots of natural materials. There's a beach house, holiday feel to each apartment but in a very chic, sophisticated way. Lydia describes the vibe as 'laid back luxury!'
'The estuary has a rich mining heritage and FCB Studios wanted to ensure the houses reflect the past. The exterior showcases black timber facades and black standing seam metal roofs.' explains Lydia.
'The ground floor includes a large bedroom with stunning estuary views and ensuite a smaller third bedroom and main bathrooms. Walking up the stairs to the second floor is a draw drop moment as you are hit with the unexpected 5.5m high vaulted ceilings plus, that estuary view just got better with viewing it now a little higher. This floor includes the living room, dining area and modern kitchen. Up one more flight and we enter the gallery room. This also included the 5.5m vaulted ceiling and has a gorgeous view looking down onto the estuary through the living room.'
'We wanted to go for that relaxed yet clean and contemporary vibe. We used natural materials, textures, and colors giving the house that subtle coastal feel and laid back atmosphere.' explains Lydia. 'The clients bought it as an investment, but very much want to enjoy it themselves along with future holidaymakers. The aim create a home away from home! When you enter, we just want you to “breathe”.'
The living room is where those beachy influences are most apparent, with ocean-inspired ornaments and shapes, lots of natural textures, and layers of soft neutral hues.
'The apartment has floor to ceiling 5-meter longs bi-folding doors in the living area and ground floor master bedroom. The perfect picture window! It overlooks the estuary and fisherman’s harbor.'
According to Lydia, it was the harbor views and tones of the surrounding water and sand that inspired the color palette inside the apartment. She explains, 'our design is very light, neutral and tonal and when the estuary is high, it's a turquoise paradise and when it's down, the sand, seaweed and seabed showcases its stunning earthy tones. Due to the ever-changing tidal timetable, the view and interiors are constantly evolving.'
There are dark hues in this room too, to ground all those lighter hues. Dark greys meet with slubby cream linens and the ebony wooden side tables are the perfect contrast to the soft grey sofa and pale woods that run through the rest of the room.
'I first fell in love with the carbon finish sideboard in the living room (it's from West Elm (opens in new tab)). The tone, color, texture, and shape is just marvelous.' says Lydia. 'From this, we started bringing in fresh, lighter tones with the off-white boucle armchairs, linen curtains & sheers. Our warm tones came in through in teak wood dining tables and rattan dining chairs. Throughout the house, we continued with this theme. Dark detailing, fresh light fabrics, and warm textures.'
- Find more modern living room ideas in our gallery.
Darker hues can also be found in the kitchen, where sleek black handleless cabinets meet with simple white worktops. Textures are added to the simple color scheme in the form of wooden boards and oversized prints.
A kitchen island sits in the center of the space, offering a more casual space to eat and socialize whilst cooking. Industrial-style fisherman lamps are above the island as a subtle nod to the area's maritime connections.
- See all our modern kitchen ideas.
Between the living room and kitchen is the dining area. On-trend cane chairs sit opposite a warm walnut wood bench to create a relaxed yet elegant setup.
The master bedroom blends the beach style of the rest of the home with an understated elegance. The four-poster bed gives it a more sophisticated lofty look, whereas the layering of materials and soft color scheme and the lightness and warmth that can be found in the other rooms.
Interesting textures and shapes balance out the clean, striking lines of the four-poster bed, giving the room a softer, more boho vibe.
Opposite the bed, a built-in wardrobe offers a splash of color with the muted sage green of the paneled doors. It's the perfect shade for the space, working almost as neutral amongst the creams and whites.
- Be inspired by more master bedroom ideas
The first guest bedroom is where you'll find that impressive vaulted ceiling. However, the soft pink hues make it feel like a cozy cocooning space despite the lofty proportions.
The second bedroom has a more vivid color palette in comparison to the neutral hues found in the other rooms. Soft blues mix with rusty ochre tones to create a space that feels fresh and fun and yet still has that warmth.
Hebe is the Digital Editor of Livingetc; she has a background in lifestyle and interior journalism and a passion for renovating small spaces. You'll usually find her attempting DIY, whether it's spray painting her whole kitchen, don't try that at home, or ever changing the wallpaper in her hallway. Livingetc has been such a huge inspiration and has influenced Hebe's style since she moved into her first rental and finally had a small amount of control over the decor and now loves being able to help others make decisions when decorating their own homes. Last year she moved from renting to owning her first teeny tiny Edwardian flat in London with her whippet Willow (who yes she chose to match her interiors...) and is already on the lookout for her next project.
Slat wall ideas – 8 spaces that show how interior designers are elevating this wall paneling trend
With slat wall ideas one of the big interior design trends of the moment, we explore 8 of the best architect and interior designer projects using this wall covering
By Hugh Metcalf • Published
Dill plant care – our editor's guide to growing perfect and flavorful fronds
Dill plant care is pretty straightforward, and this foolproof guide will create you a kitchen garden with ease
By Pip Rich • Published