Soho Apartments - high-specification intuitive KNX technology within a small service space
This stylish building is located in the heart of Soho in London. Consisting of a roadside commercial space, two compact facing apartments, a courtyard duplex plus a split level penthouse, this high value yet space restricted project required careful consideration of services, function, installation and aesthetics.
At the beginning
The client wanted to create high-specification apartments with the latest technology that were still easy and intuitive to use. Hardware had to be carefully chosen as the available service space was very limited.
The requirement was to integrate door entry, lighting, heating and air-conditioning, and provide a comprehensive network and AV infrastructure that an occupier could use from day one yet still had expansion possibilities.
The chosen KNX solution
KNX technology was chosen, as it allows full control of virtually any building operation that can be imagined, and gives a variety of different contact points for the end user, with keypads and touch screens available from many different manufacturers.
For the success of the project, close co-ordination with the architect, interior designer and M&E consultant was essential to make best use of the limited service space available, to house a control panel in each apartment and AV equipment, whilst still allowing easy access for future maintenance.
GIRA were chosen for room keypads and visualisation, including door entry. Each apartment has a wall mounted glass and aluminium 7” touch screen for overall control, with aluminium brown and anthracite inscribed keypads in all rooms. Control of all functions is also available on the supplied iPad or any iOS/Android device, both at home or away.
Each room also has a discreet Basalte Auro in the ceiling. This can have many functions, but has initially been configured to activate the clients preferred playlist when entering the bathroom, and turning on the lights at a low level when entering the en-suite after 10pm. The keypads also measure the temperature in the room, removing the need for additional sensors or thermostats.
KNX is controlling the lighting, air-conditioning, extract, boiler, heating, towel rails and mirror demisters. Depending on the apartment it is also controlling shading and mechanised windows. A hard-wired and wireless network infrastructure is future ready to handle the purchaser’s internet and video distribution needs.
Audio & visual control was taken care of by Control4. Each apartment has discrete in-ceiling speakers in each room, with internet radio, streaming services and air-play as sources, with ample space in the AV hub allowing room for expansion.
Big benefits for the customer
The KNX technology provides a robust building management system with an established infrastructure that can be upgraded and adapted over time. KNX reduces the complexity of controlling the building, using just one interface and simple temperature control in each room means wall mounted hardware such as thermostats, keypads and displays are kept to a minimum. The remotely accessed network and KNX infrastructure also improve the service and maintenance capabilities. Thanks to KNX, all systems work seamlessly together and the simple and easy interfaces make the technology ideal for an inexperienced user as well as for those more technical.
The project was implemented by Mosaic
Established in 2009, predominantly as a residential AV business, Mosaic has evolved into a building technology specialist who operate as a consultancy, design and installation business with a focus on integrated customer solutions, either for the personal or commercial living space.
In-house CAD, lighting and M&E design teamed with experienced residential and commercial AV engineers, enables Mosaic to cover nearly every aspect of building control and any audio and visual requirement.
Recent achievements include being involved in a Battersea development that won the British Home Awards multi-dwelling 2017, Control4 ISE winners and CEDIA 2017 best multi-unit design winners.