With BODÀR Bottega d'Architettura.
The project for the complex of the Medicean Farm in Prato outlines a feasibility study by structuring the Implementation Plan of the area, taking into account the valuable context in which the artifact insists and the surrounding landscape, from the Cascine di Tavola Park to the gore grid and of the canals of the plain. It is drawn up in order to identify the guidelines for the restoration project.
Returning to life a product of undisputed historical and architectural value is the aim pursued, introducing a new social, cultural and economic fabric, generating a new and pulsating pole of the city, urban hinge of the entire Prato plain.
We worked on a beautiful house, which over the years has lost the flavor of the stratifications, with the use of anonymous materials and some modifications that had trivialized it. With the new ownership, a process of analysis of the structure and attention to their needs has begun. The property has regained personality and flavor, the beautiful internal courtyard appears today as a rediscovered place. The swimming pool built in the place of a large curvilinear characteristic of the 60s, has become a great viewpoint on the untouched valley.
A large abandoned space, once a carpet shop and then a mosque, the idea of a restaurant with an International touch, where the walls can be empty and the seats with stuffed benches or chairs recalling the Tuscan chair. A counter in the middle, separating the entrance from the hall, the restaurant from the wine bar. Irregular walls, just as they were, wooden floor and cement tiles, a combination of modernity and tradition. The large open kitchen is the starting point for diving the various areas. The restrooms immediately became a must, in the reasoning behind the fact that a good restaurant must also have “beautiful” restrooms. An outer terrace overlooks the river Arno, towards Palazzo Corsini.
The courtyard used for the out-of-cell time of the old prison Le Murate, comes back to life with a small but long rectangular building, leaning on the strong and high stone wall of the cells. Within a low area that opens onto a square with many openings both externally and internally. Four spaces with vaulted ceilings and a long escape route with a sloping floor. The challenge was that of creating a single location from these mixed up spaces. Today a harmonious atmosphere unites the spaces that are connected to each other by new openings and a counter that appears on two different levels.The furniture is basic, made with very poor materials and through the reuse of elements often from the old prison: peepholes, windows, doors, iron boxes. The long escape route becomes an event room, TV, projections, and prison-child bathrooms. Color participates in all this transformation.
A previous restructuring, heavy and impersonal, pushed us towards a work of lightening and recovery of the original structure. Some internal modifications, to reduce the many differences in height, and the search for an atmosphere of warmth inside, was also the recovery of furnishing in this beautiful farmhouse.
A three-story villa had been ruined by a previous transformation into offices. Everything was cheap, from the wood-veneered ceiling to the machine-made terracotta with marble inlays. We recreated a space that would suit the needs of northern European customers, mainly through the use of colour and wooden flooring.
The building, originally an ancient palace became a farmhouse over the centuries. A barnyard, which was once an entrance, turned into an open-air room, a panoramic summer livingroom. The entrance was therefore moved to the ground floor, where the farm once was. The stairs leading to the canteen, now linked to the oil mill, is now the main entrance. The internal staircase rises up from the centre of the house to reduce the number of corridors and to make the most of the space, with a balanced and harmonious development. Fixed furniture and kitchen, a swimming pool and the barn completed the job.