MdAA creates elevated bedroom "like a treehouse" inside Rome apartment

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Inside Festival 2015: Massimo d'Alessandro explains how his studio MdAA transformed an old stable into an apartment by creating a treehouse-like room raised from the floor on a single column (+ movie).

Tree House apartment by MdAA

Tree House, which won the Residential category at Inside Festival 2015, is a luxury apartment in Trastevere, Rome, designed by Italian architecture firm MdAA .

Converted from an old abandoned stable, the project gets its name from its unusual raised bedroom, which is supported by a thick column in the middle of the open-plan living room on the ground floor.

Tree House apartment by MdAA

"You enter from the door that was the entrance of the stable, just below the treehouse," d'Alessandro explains in our latest movie for Inside Festival.

"You can see in the middle this suspended room, like a treehouse, which is the main bedroom."

Tree House apartment by MdAA

The bedroom is reached by a staircase on one side of the living room, which leads to a raised walkway that runs around the perimeter of the space.



Made from black metal, the raised structure also contains a small dressing room and a bathroom. The tilted column supporting it is covered with wood.

Tree House apartment by MdAA

"The structure of the treehouse needed to be very rigid," d'Alessandro explains.

"To sustain this kind of dream about the treehouse, the room is raised on only one column, slightly inclined because it's much more friendly than just having a vertical pillar."

Tree House apartment by MdAA

The ground floor includes the main living and dining areas, as well as an additional bedroom and bathroom. Natural light is provided through glass doors opening onto a patio on the ground floor. There is also a terrace on the first floor.

Tree House apartment by MdAA

D'Alessandro says the clients, a pair of fashion designers, chose to not to furnish their new apartment exclusively with designer furniture.

"If you have a very strong architecture, you can put your grandmother's chairs inside," he says. "You don't need to have everything well designed."


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"They filled the house with a lot of things with memories from their life and they are completely happy with the house."

MdAA founder Massimo d'Alessandro
MdAA founder Massimo d'Alessandro. Copyright: Dezeen

This movie was produced by Dezeen for Inside Festival. It was filmed at Inside Festival 2015 in Singapore. All photographs are by Nico Marziali unless otherwise specified.

Inside Festival 2015 took place in Singapore from 4 to 6 November, alongside partner event World Architecture Festival. Dezeen is media partners for both events and will be publishing more video interviews with the category winners over the coming weeks.

  • Guest

    A “friendly” wonky column? Good grief, I’ve heard it all now.

    • Meme

      I understand what he’s trying to say, that it’s more like informal, spontaneous, as opposed to formal and rigid. He didn’t say wonky, did he?

  • Archi-Nerd

    They should have done the photoshoot before the owner decorated it so terribly.

  • kokosi

    This project should’t even be here on Dezeen, it is simply a bad project.

    • Thomas

      Is Dezeen only for the very good projects? How will you know what is good if you never experience the “bad”?

  • Leo

    Beautiful finishings, but… column “slightly inclined because it’s much more friendly”? What a discourse! I wonder if a 45-degree column wouldn’t be even friendlier?