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Significant artworks and designer furniture set the scene for an aspirational interior in this show apartment

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From Generation X to empty nesters – every decade coins another phrase to describe a particular niche market. The latest demographic to be profiled by the marketing industry is the über buyer.

As the name suggests, the über buyer is well travelled, financially secure, and an early adapter to trends. This is the market segment that aspires to brand name products and luxury goods, and chooses to live in a prestigious location.

The new Lumière Residences in central Sydney, designed by renowned UK architect Sir Norman Foster, is such a location. The development, which comprises eight slender, glass-clad towers linked by a central core, is a distinctive, sculptural presence on the Sydney skyline. Not surprisingly, the show apartment interior, designed by Lynn Malone, needed to be equally eye-catching.

Malone says the tower's location helped determine the interior design.

"The apartment has extensive views of several Victorian-era architectural masterpieces, including St Andrew's Cathedral, built in the mid 1800s. The juxtaposition of the cathedral's sandstone facade with the Lumière tower glazing was inspirational in the sense that each facade presents an enduring design vernacular, and is classically composed. Both the old and new architectural icons influenced the interior finishes."

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Malone says the need to cater to the über buyer market also determined the level of luxury, and the need for high-quality designer furniture pieces and artworks.

"The provision of several significant works of art was the driver for the interior design and the styling of the fit-out. We have provided a diverse collection of works from emerging and established international artists."

Malone says the interior backdrop needed to complement this eclectic art collection, and not detract from the panoramic city views.

"For this reason, the walls were painted matt white – not a pure, clinical white, but a soft white with umber and black, which creates a restful backdrop to the vibrant art."

The one exception to the white is a red wall, which helps define the entrance to the apartment. This features a large work by local underground artist vayu.

Malone says the two-storey, English terrace-style lay-out created a double-height void in the living area and loggia. This also helped to better display large-scale artworks.

Two works by Sydney visual artist Ross Tamlin accentuate the size of the loggia. The oils on canvas have a vivid red, yellow, green and blue colour palette, which helps enliven the semi-outdoor dining area.

The living room is defined by a large, colourful painting by abstract artist Brad Munro, which is positioned above the sofa. Malone says this is the centrepiece from which the art collection evolved. It also provides a visual balance to the expansive wall of joinery opposite.

This custom-designed unit, which has a high-gloss polyurethane finish, incorporates space for a sculptural artwork encased in Perspex. Other open cabinets display collectable glass pieces.

To add visual interest to the living area, and to complement the colour scheme of the Azure apartment's fixtures, Malone introduced a variety of textures. Cream silk and linen feature on the sofa – a signature piece from B&B Italia.

"The Harry sofa is a 1920s design, which is still relevant today," she says.

Cream leather was specified for the sculptural Cassina chair, and the dining chairs were upholstered in a cream-coloured ribbed cotton blend.

A vintage, Danish-designed dining table, in solid eucalyptus timber, is a classical piece that was chosen for its aesthetic link to the more traditional architecture in the city.

Visual warmth is also provided by a fire – but the Igloo EcoSmart stainless steel firebox provides a highly contemporary version. Encased in glass walls, the fireplace gives the illusion that it is floating.

Other designer pieces in the living room and loggia include an Antonio Citterio-designed coffee table, and a Moooi Random pendant light suspended above the table. This 850mm fibreglass bubble was designed by Dutch artist Bertjan Pot.

Art also takes centre stage in the stairwell, and the bedrooms. In the master bedroom a colourful digital artwork by Adelaide artist Theofania is reflected in a mirrored panel above the bed. The bedroom also features crisp white linen, and an ottoman upholstered in bright-red velvet.

First published date: 23 November 2007

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Credit List

Developer Frasers Property
Architect Foster & Partners
Interior designer Lynn Malone, LynnMalone Design (Sydney)
Main contractor Multiplex Construction
Electrical contractor Star Group – project electrician Robbe Fell
Floor tiles Travertine tiles from WK Marble & Granite
Lighting for art Euroluce
Paints Wattyl
Sofa B&B Italia Harry from Space Furniture
Throw pillows Jade Upholstery
Swivel chair Cassina Do Do from Space Furniture
Coffee table B&B Italia Eileen table designed by Antonio Citterio
Floor lamp Flos Spun lamp F in gloss white finish
Ottoman Custom, upholstered in Westbury Fabrics Europa in Red Pepper, designed by Derek Marsh for Jade Upholstery
Area rug Eco-Textures hand-tufted from Custom Weave Rugs & Carpets
Dining table Manufactured by The Zoureff Family, from Mondo Trasho
Dining chairs Space Furniture
Fireplace EcoSmart Igloo from The Fire Company
Loggia pendant light Moooi Random light from Space Furniture
Art Brenda Colahan Fine Art (Munro; Anke Stacker); Sherman Galleries; Rushcutters Bay Gallery (Tamlin; Theofania) Michael Commerford Gallery (vayu); JamFactory Contemporary Crafts & Design (glass art)
Audiovisual systems Loewe; Polk Audio, from International Dynamics
Kitchen cabinets UTS Interiors
Benchtops Polished black granite
Splashback Onyx by Chelsea Artisans
Oven, cooktop, microwave, dishwasher, wine cooler and washing machine Smeg
Ventilation Omega
Bed Designed by Lynn Malone, manufactured by Jade Upholstery
Bed linen and robe Mio Palazzo
Throw blanket Becker + Minty
Custom framed mirrors Designed by Lynn Malone, manufactured by Michael Commerford Gallery – craftsman Russell Warr
Illuminated night tables Designed by Lynn Malone, built by Scotts Joinery
Console table Bauhaus from Anibou
Window treatment Silent Gliss, with sheer fabric from Zimmer + Rhode Fabrics, distributed by Mokum Fabrics
Bathroom fixtures and taps Meco
Toiletries Jo Malone London
Stemware Jasper Conrad from Macleay on Manning; Mikasa Paris
Flowers Vin & Van & Kim's Flowers
Wine Hanging Rock Winery, courtesy of David Lacey Marketing & Brand Strategy