Roof Terrace in Holland Park

This unusual house in Holland Park has a good sized roof for which there was permission for use as a roof terrace. There are wonderful views over the surrounding area and it is open to the South.

The new owners of the house had particularly bought the property in the knowledge that this would be an essential part of its attraction. However, its existing appearance was not attractive or conducive to being used as an entertainment space which is what they were looking for. Good lighting was to be a crucial part of Charlotte Rowe’s design as both the owners had busy careers and the terrace would be used mainly during the evening.

As with all roof terraces on older buildings, there are limitations to the weight and loadings one can put on the roofing timbers. Therefore all materials and planting have to be designed to minimise the stress on the roof structure. The solution was timber decking, Western Red Cedar benches, large enough to be used as day beds and caramel coloured steel planters. There are frosted glass panels set into the decking both of which are under-lit at night creating a magical effect.

A combination of spike spots uplighting the planting and timber trellis and a series of rope lights under the glass pebbles give a soft dusty pink wash make this a subtly atmospheric space. Due to limitations on depth of planting allowed, grasses and perennials were planted and specially made opaque cream resin planting containers to complement the frosted glass panels was the finishing touch.