From Margaret on January 31st, 2011 in General Remodel
If you look at this loft apartment and feel that it could be in a warehouse or cool indie restaurant, you’d be right on. First a furniture warehouse, then restaurant and even punk rock night club, Dan Bernier and Amy Finn Bernier’s Chinatown loft in Lost Angeles has as interesting of a history as it does current look. The place even held a stage graced by Blondie, the Go-Go’s, and the Police.
The energy that has always existed in various forms continues in this reused historic building. Like many urban renovations, this space first offered the Berniers a unique living shape as well as historical funk to overcome, like the disused kitchen in the back (now their two sons’ bedroom), lofted sleeping quarters, and the large public foreground.
Working with the original quirks rather against them, the Berniers have created a modernized space that honors the neighborhood’s renaissance, as well as its past. Prime examples are the two swings bolted into an exposed beam, and the scooter zone throughout the open pathways.
In the spirit of a place that has had to conform to several uses, the Berniers added child-friendly touches to the space. The bathroom holds a traditional sink as well as a miniature one, and the boys’ bedroom offers a view of the Independence Day fireworks from their beds.
Bright colors abound with the 14-foot ceilings painted primaries, and an IKEA kitchen shows off red plastic panels—a nod to the faux-Chinese lacquer of Chinatowns everywhere.
Aside from the amazing space, the location itself has surprised Dan and Amy. Fireworks on every corner. A round-the-clock bicycle security patrol. Late-night foot traffic. “We actually let the kids out of our sight,” Amy says happily. Which makes their entire living scenario a Los Angeles anomaly.