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Artisan building complex in Fitzrovia, London

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29-Aug-2017
Best Place to Live

Fitzrovia – Although located in the heart of London, this unconventional district is the polar opposite of the neighbouring West End with its thriving business life. Fitzrovia is known for its lively art scene, and has always held a fascination for famous personalities, such as Virginia Woolf, George Bernard Shaw and Arthur Rimbaud. Even today, poets, designers, and musicians are drawn to the district's many bars, pubs, and concert venues, and it is also widely known for its traditional handicrafts. There is certainly no better place in the whole of London to combine business with pleasure, and inspiration with relaxation. In 2016 "The Sunday Times" even bestowed Fitzrovia with the honour of being London's most liveable district.

In the heart of Fitzrovia, the renowned London project developer Dukelease has renovated six buildings, transforming them into 13 luxurious apartments and penthouses. Various retail units are also housed on the ground floors. The result is the fascinating "Artisan" building complex on the corner of Tottenham Court Road and Goodge Street. The name refers to the district's
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tradition for handicrafts, and this became a guide for planning the conversions. The goal was to maintain the look of the existing buildings, while at the same time creating modern and exclusive interiors. This has led to a visually stimulating contrast: Uniquely contemporary architecture which does not deny its historical roots and urban planning context.

The interior of some of the apartments was designed by London architectural firm Rolfe Judd. Spacious apartments and exclusive penthouses with high-end equipment have been created. This is apparent in the materials used and the furnishings in the kitchens and bathrooms, which are exquisite. It also went without saying to equip the apartments with the most modern building technology – namely a KNX system from Gira.

From the start, it was clear to project developer Dukelease that the prestigious project should combine living comfort with security and energy efficiency. Through Gira's "Great Britain" branch, contact was made with architectural firm Rolfe Judd by Key Account Manager UK Muir Baxter. A KNX system was installed in several of the Artisan apartments. For over 25 years, this system has been the internationally recognised standard for a wired bus system. With KNX, a control line is laid alongside the power supply. The cable forms the electronic network through which the control commands are sent.

Gira touch sensors have to be installed instead of traditional switches. The sensors make a building "intelligent", because they send the commands to, say, the lights and blinds. In this way, different lights can be bundled into light scenes, which are activated with just a fingertip. Or the blinds can be controlled automatically, using a time schedule that has been saved beforehand and also takes weekends and holidays into account. Besides classical switches and socket outlets, the Gira touch sensors were realised in the design line Gira E22 in aluminium, which is mounted flat on the walls.

Also used in the Artisan complex is the Gira Homeserver, which guarantees even more living comfort and security. The HomeServer permits, for example, the visualisation of the building technology using a special interface that can be accessed via an iPad. Not only can residents control the smart home functions, they can also view and check them. An integrated multiroom system enables music to be played as well. The technology was installed by London's smart home specialists "Sagar Smart Homes".
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