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Carol Burton Looks East for Inspiration for a Small Buenos Aires Apartment

June 17, 2019

Less isn’t always more—but sometimes having less forces you to do more. That was certainly the case for architect Carol Boton when a client asked her to renovate a 580-square-foot apartment in the Palermo neighborhood of Buenos Aires. “The biggest challenge,” she says, “was to achieve functionality and luxury in such a small apartment.”

For solutions, she looked East to Japanese architecture. “They master the use of space, light, and simplicity,” she says. “Nothing is simple, but everything should aspire to be.” And so for simplicity’s sake, Burton demolished the yellow stucco walls, which divided the first floor. She created a volume that includes a staircase, kitchen, and toilet, but otherwise left the space alone. Above, she swapped the original partition between the bedroom and bathroom for a glass screen.

Chevron flooring adds dimensionality, but light is the real star here. “It used to be a really dark apartment,” Burton says. “My favorite detail is the luminosity.” Sometimes a little light is all you need.

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