Hirshfeld-Fleer residence
(former Nahmia-Messinas residence)
Greek Colony, Jerusalem

Identity An apartment renovation on the top floor of an existing small apartment block in the Greek Colony of the new city of Jersualem. A site surrounded by historic structures of the 1910s and 1920s, with thich stone masonry walls, decorative terrazo floor tiles, white plastered interior walls and soft colors. The result was a a modern apartment, that unified itself, though, with the surrounding context, history and materials.

Organization The renovation of this top floor apartment of an existing small apartment block started from gutting the entire apartment to bare walls, and re-thinking the apartment organization, and surrounding views. Then, the heart of the house (kitchen and dinning) were moved closer to glazed porch and the views to the gardens and eucaliptus trees outside the apartment. The apartment was lit up by an open floor plan for the public areas, and more private rooms for sleeping and working.

Materials Local finishes, such as decorative terrazo floor tiles, armenian tiles decorative niche in the glazed porch, pale colors, lots of light and lots of view to the surrounding landscape (gardens, eucaliptus trees, etc.). Built in library niches with thick wooden shelves, built in closets, lots of light and flow of space.

'Alternative' design This apartment was designed with the input of a 'Feng Shui' expert. Although not a 'green' design in terms of energy use and ecological thinking, it is a project that suggests a different way of living. A modest urban apartment, that borrows and connects to the rich history of Jerusalem and the Greek Colony, and an apartment which, despite its urban character, connects to the 'natural wilderness' outside it.

The apartment was completed in 2001.