Stairs with natural stone represent a special challenge for the architect. Because the material is heavy – but the construction should usually demonstrate lightness and effortless climbing. We show 3 examples which the Italian company Grassi Pietre has sent us.
New showroom of the Italian design brand Rimadesio in London’s East End (83-85, Wigmore Street): The steps are not made of solid stone, but instead support a steel girder inside, which is anchored in the wall. The stone (limestone Grigio Argento, lightly brushed) with a thickness of 2 cm is only cladding. The underside is a bronze-coloured metal plate, in which LED lights are integrated.
The architect was Giuseppe Bavuso, Creative Director of Rimadesio.
Private villa in Italy: here an old farmhouse was converted into a modern residential building. Characteristic features are the walls made of quarry stone. The staircase to the upper floor was a central feature of the design. The stairs are made of solid San Pietro marble with steel beams embedded in them. They are made of AISI 304 stainless steel, which is anchored in the wall. One of the challenges was to drill the holes for the beams into the stone.
The project was designed by the company’s director and architect Francesco Grassi, together with his father Pietro, who is a structural engineer.
Villa “La Jungle du Roi” (The Jungle of the King), Cannes, France: Natural stone is used here only for the cladding of the staircase, which is made of concrete. The cream-coloured limestone Bianco Perla, an off-white limestone, light and compact with a fine grain, in a honed finish. The banister is in the shape of lilies, once the sign of the French kings, in Christianity also a symbol of chastity. The columns on the stairs are hollow.
Other columns and their capitals are made of solid stone.
The building complex belongs to the designer Philipp Plein. He “lives and loves luxury as loud, sexy and ostentatious as possible”, says a web page. Everywhere in the ensemble of buildings you can find reproductions of caged exotic animal reproductions. The complex includes a swimming pool and a private cinema.
Photos: Grassi Pietre