We finally have floor plans for our Italian home renovation project! This is a thrilling stage for me. Ever since my Sister and I used to draw up our dream homes on drafting paper as kids (yes we were a little bit weird) I’ve loved floor plans. I loved making floor plans so much in high school, I actually took drafting class! As an adult searching for apartments, I’d get giddy whenever websites had floor plans. Have I mentioned I love floor plans? Do you? For my fellow floor plan lovers, this post is for you!
Floor Plans for Home Renovation
These are the floor plans from round one of our Italian home renovation project that I’ve dubbed #RenovatingBardonecchia. Round one includes our original floor plan, plus four initial concepts our architect provided. Let’s start with the original floor plan shall we!
Original Floor Plan
Here is the original floor plan for our home in Bardonecchia, Italy with a few notes and photos to help explain what we’re looking at.
Giardino interno at the top of the original floor plan (above) translates to indoor garden. For us, that’s our back yard which is shared with the rest of the condo. I’m pretty sure you can guess, but the bathroom is in the middle of the floor plan with the studio on the left and the master bedroom on the right.
Here’s the before pictures of what these rooms look like now to give you a feel for the space.
For reference here’s the floor plan again so you don’t have to scroll back up! Moving counterclockwise around the floor plan, that box with a big X on it, is the elevator. Just below is the front door.
If you can image walking in that front door and looking left, you’ll see all the wasted space we’ve been talking about. We need more usable space, less hallways and corridors. These images will give the full picture.
Giardino su via Mazzini at the bottom of the floor plan above translates to Garden on Mazzini or front yard. This is the side of the house with our balcony that has amazing views. Want to see? Facing north, we see snow-capped Italian Alps.
Facing south, we see the ski runs in Bardonecchia.
If you look closely at the photo above, you can see people skiing last winter. We’re a little bummed that this Italy’s second COVID lockdowns will likely cancel the ski season. Alas moving on… the living room is the largest space at the bottom of the floor plan.
Last but not least, is one of the biggest differences between Italian and American homes, the kitchen! Behind that little accordion symbol in the floor plan is the closet kitchen I’ll be cooking in during lockdown.
Turns out, after coming out to get exact measurements, our Architect let us know our space was built smaller than what the original floor plans implied. No surprise looking at these photos right!
Reworking Our Floor Plan
There’s code in Italy that requires two doors be between the bathroom and the kitchen, which partially explains why Italian homes have so many hallways. It also means we had a rather tricky task for our architect. Our space might be small, but our ideas of how to use the space, required big changes. I’m sure you can guess, as an American the biggest request I had was to open up that kitchen. Other big requests were to utilize the wasted space in the center of the home and renovate the bathroom. Here’s the first round of suggestions from our architect.
The first option gives me something I’m longing for, an island in the kitchen! The master bedroom and the studio are still in the same positions.
While my dream kitchen island is gone, the sunlight might actual have a chance to move throughout the house in this plan. There is still however, a lot of hallways. That and one thing I’m not a huge fan of in Italian homes, an impending wall of closet!
Option C is a study in how to create an open floor plan in an existing home! There’s that wall of closets though with the master bedroom on the left. Plus, still a lot of wasted space. While Paolo would have his studio, where would I work?
Whatever you want someone to pick, you show them last. Our architect was so confident in this final option, that they presented it with a rendering. The master bedroom and the studio are switched and the space that’s used most at night, is in the central portion of the apartment. What do you think?
Join me next Friday to see what we decided! Renovating Bardonecchia updates coming every Friday. Have a great weekend everyone.