Project Name: Chalet Pow Pow

Location: Courchevel 1850 – French Alps

Date Completed: 2015

Interior Designer: Wilkinson Beven Design

This Modern Luxury 650 sq. m / 7,000 sq. ft chalet in the prestigious Alpine resort of Courchevel 1850 provides accommodation for 16 people, with luxury basement pool & spa, games room, gym, and cinema space. Briefed to create a modern luxury ski chalet interior with a relaxed family feel, Wilkinson Beven Design used fabrics to inject colour into a cool, contemporary palette that still references a chalet feel with textured internal timber work.

A take on certain aspects of traditional chalet design gives this property a contemporary freshness that reflects the client’s taste. The living room central core is clad in an evenly cut stone that shifts the ‘rustic’ notion of mountain ‘man-made’ towards a mood of cleaner line-modernity. Plainer walls and painted structural features emphasise this feel. The sliced timber slats of a specialist wallcovering are reminiscent of wooden chalet cladding – but here take on a very different appearance. Colour and texture are natural and subtle, patterns feature contemporary geometrics. Scaled up sofas create an especially cosy family or social space and woollen cushions appear to have been knitted on giant needles.

Linking each floor of the chalet, Wilkinson Beven Design designed a unique laser-cut steel staircase, which snakes and dances its way through the building core. The startling red finish and almost ‘kinetic’ cut-away pattern create a sense of dynamic movement in the stairwell space. The basement games room forms part of the chalet’s entertainment facility, where glimpses of the adjacent swimming pool may be seen through glazed panels. Despite the fact that there is no natural daylight on this floor, punchy colours and carefully considered lighting create a fun and vibrant environment.

Serious swimming was an important concern for the client, so meticulous attention to detail was applied to the design for this space, in terms of both usability, practicality and selection of materials and finishes. The same injections of colour, brightness and crisp surface textures imbue the spa and pool with a fresh, contemporary feel, providing a facility for exercise or poolside relaxation. A striking wall of three-dimensional concrete tiles forms a dynamic, flowing wall pattern, evoking both the surface movement of the pool and the visual impact of the mountainous crags of this Alpine setting.

The exuberant spirit of, ‘La Nouvelle Vague’, permeates the compact and colourful home cinema setting. Comfortable, rounded seating in restful charcoal grey tones, stands off a deep, ‘sink into’, woollen carpet; this natural palette allows sharp accent colours to catch the eye. Padded and patterned acoustic wall panels add texture and movement, whilst plastered-in table lamps seem to emerge from the cinema walls, floating above the dazzling yellow Demilune side tables.

The client brief provided a new challenge for Wilkinson Beven Design’s team, creating a relaxed family ski residence with modern painted tones avoiding natural stones instead opting for ceramics. Translating the designers expertise for luxury ski chalets to this task and the various facilities within such a property allows the final interior to reflect this brief, bringing warmth and textures with fabric and furniture.

The interior embraces the traditional specification of internal timber for chalets but plays with the natural grain and texture of the material to bring a mountain feel through the crisp grey modern paint finish. The interior retains warmth from the oak floor running through the properties main areas adjoining earth toned ceramics, still retaining a modern / quirky feel the interior is made homely and mountainous with the use of textured fabrics which play on rustic weaves.