Upgrading a historic villa in Tel Aviv while keeping its eclectic personality

Bar Orian and Yael Siso are responsible for the renovation of a 1913 building in the ancient heart of the Israeli city.

The Leeve

The Levee – a villa with eight apartments for luxury travellers – stands out for its multifaceted personality, while all around the city of Tel Aviv, 110 years after its foundation, remains an unstoppable work-in-progress. In virtue of the restoration and addition of two new floors by the Israeli architecture studio Bar Orian and thanks to the attentive interior design entrusted to the Belgian-Israeli Yael Siso, at The Levee the spirit of the place and of the time is still present.

Originally called The Gurevitch House, the eclectic-style building – which in 1913 bore two floors and a shingled roof – was part of a group of colourful, low houses, located along narrow residential roads and influenced by the Bauhaus and Art Nouveau movements. For the additional floors, the architects chose the contemporary aesthetic of a cube-shaped volume clad in a metal grid, distinct from the original building thanks to an intermediate recessed level, so that the new intervention seems to hover above the old building.

The Levee
Exterior view of The Levee in Tel Aviv, Israel. Photo Sivan Askayo

For the interiors, renovated in loft style with an industrial look, the walls and ceilings have been stripped bare, exposing the unhewn cement. In some points, shell fragments can be spotted, which bear witness to the sand from the Tel Aviv coastline that was used in constructions, one hundred years ago. The bare perimeter is softened by the warmth of the flooring in wood. The minimalist lighting leaves room for sunlight that can play with the lines and accentuate the geometric forms. The prestigious location, right near Neve Tzedek, the oldest neighbourhood of the White City, has all the charm of a historic residence testifying to a city in transformation.

Opening picture: The Leeve, interior view. Armchairs, carpet, pouf, sofa by Minotti

The Levee
Bar Orian
Interior design:
Yael Siso
Tel Aviv, Israele

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