When a young family of four – consisting of a well-travelled couple acquainted with a bustling way of life and their two elementary school-aged boys – decided to build their dream home out in a quaint village in suburban Moscow, they had only one request in mind: the house had to look modern.
"They are real citizens of a big city who are always in a rush, so the family nest had to be comfortable, appropriate for the kids and their parents but still stylish," says Alexander Kozlov, who founded Alexander Kozlov Interiors alongside designer Anastasia Blagodarnaya over 15 years ago. Known for their fully bespoke projects around the world that span architecture and interior design, the duo was tapped by the couple to create their residence from the ground up. Scroll through the gallery below (Interior Photography: Stephan Julliard and Ian Phillips; Exterior Photography: Mikhail Loskutov; Styling: Natalya Onufreychuk) to find out more:
Perusing the immaculately sleek exterior of this 9,150sqft, four-bedroom estate wrapped in Jura marble and sprawling manicured greenery, it is a surprise to learn that this particular aesthetic is a departure from the London-educated, Moscow-based architect's typical oeuvre, which leans towards the traditional. “Usually, I work in a more classical style,” explains Alexander. Despite this, Alexander and Anastasia have injected into the two-storey house a rare blend of minimalism and bright splendour, thanks to various modern-meets-classical influences, a kaleidoscopic palette and minimalistic silhouettes.
Alexander also paid extra attention to the home’s construction so that consequent elements such as trimmings and built-in picture windows could be effortlessly incorporated. The latter, which open up to spacious al fresco terraces where the family spend a lot of time in the sun, were especially important given the magnificent flora and fauna that envelops the home from three sides. “The house is surrounded by a wonderful pine forest, so we didn’t use any curtains on the first floor,” says Alexander, pointing to the sun-drenched kitchen and living spaces where the family always have breakfast together in the morning, watch movies and lounge around playing Legos. “The unexpected decision to paint the house in white both inside and outside also made it very light, airy and relaxing,” adds Alexander.
The entrance opens up to a bright contemporary living room anchored by lush green sofas and armchairs designed by Vincent Van Duysen and a bright yellow painting by Kirill Basalaev from Art Brut Moscow.
On these crisp white walls, the duo was free to play with various ornaments and pops of colourful contemporary art. “The main feature of the house is its artworks, so you find a lot of painting on the walls and sculptures,” says Alexander, who emblazoned the living room with a bright yellow painting by Kirill Basalaev juxtaposed against sculptural, forest green velvet upholstered Molteni&C sofas, the colour and silhouette of which inspired the rest of the room's décor.
A photograph by George Byrne depicting vivid colour-block buildings hangs nearby, surrounded by custom furnishings and curios from the contemporary gallery Art Brut Moscow. Each piece, while anchoring their respective pocket of space within the home, complements each other to form the collective ebullience. "The living room is my favourite area," enthuses Alexander. "It’s full of brightness, energy and style. It has a lot of space for the family to gather together in the evening."
The minimalist and tranquil aesthetic extends to the state-of-the-art open kitchen that flows into the sun-drenched dining area.
It connects to the outdoor terrace and is where the family have breakfast together in the morning.
Designing an idyllic oasis that not only facilitated family time but also catered to the individual needs of each member – even as they grow up – was at the fore of Alexander and Anastasia's concept.
"Originally there was a room for an office, but the clients wanted to have a lot of space for their kids, so it was transformed into a playroom.” The office was instead built into the second-floor library – accessorised with a tomato-inspired vintage armchair from NG Gallery – where a black winding staircase leads up to the attic used as another playroom.
Neon signs from Homeneon add a touch of inspiration in the boys’ bedroom.
Every nook and corner makes for a perfect scene for the loving family.
The tranquil home is filled with refreshing accents.
Equipped with nature-inspired design aesthetic and exceptional appointments, the sophistcated bathroom makes for the perfect space for the family to wind.
The guest bedroom’s floral headboard nods to the house’s forest surroundings.
An elegant corner of the guest bedroom.
For the couple, it is in their palatial master en suite, complete with a wood-lined walk-in closet and a spa-worthy bathroom that they enjoy unadulterated serenity. Alexander reveals that his work on the home is yet to finish. “Now the kids are living in the same room, but in a few years when they become older, we will design their own rooms," says Alexander.
The elegant master en suite is outfitted with dark wood details and a zen-like ambience.
Forming the exterior haven are a fireplace and furnishings from Unopiu.
The two-storey house is enveloped on three sides by a verdant pine forest, which the family love to enjoy on their sprawling outdoor garden.