[dropcap size=big]T[/dropcap]he East Village apartment building in Lebanon’s capital city (Beirut) is a mixed use, mid-rise development with a built up area of 8000 sqm comprising 13 double-volume loft units. Designed by J.M.Bonfils & Associates, the building also features an art gallery, a rooftop swimming pool and a prominent vertical garden influenced by the now inaccessible public garden of the Electricite du Liban headquarters, built in the 60’s. The aim of the vertical garden is to reintroduce a more space-efficient vertical green space that the community could enjoy.
[dropcap size=big]T[/dropcap]he concept consisted in lifting key contextual elements – traditional building material and Lebanese gardens – and revives them with contemporary interpretations. So conventional wood and dark stone found an unexpected contrast in vivid red metal, and space-efficient vertical gardens replaced their horizontal predecessors.
While it looks like a simple geometric shape from afar, the structure consists of three parallel slices each with a unique identity that’s revealed on approach. A contemporary art gallery occupies the ground floor to introduce a cultural and commercial element to the project.
East Village includes 13 loft units, each of the double height characteristic of the region: 10 duplexes, two penthouses and one simplex, its balcony framed by red metal. On the simplex’s terrace is a private bar that overlooks the pubs and lounges scattered across Gemayzeh and through Downtown, exposing a panoramic view of the city.
“East Village is a kind of suprematist composition playing with the paradoxical conditions of today and linking us to a kind of paradigm” – Jean Marc Bonfils