crossing lines. w r i t t e n b y lisa c re ga n
p h o t o g r a p h y b y to n y s o l u r i
mathematicians often cite the spiral of a nautilus shell as an example of proportional perfection.
So it’s logical that when Chicago architect and designer Scott Himmel wants to visualize a project, he draws a spiral with three lines cutting through it. “One line represents the client’s desires, another the budget and finally, the constraints of the existing space,” he says. “When we get to the center of the spiral—the place where those three lines intersect—I know we’ve got it.” Budget seems an unlikely constraint in this sprawling River North penthouse on the 47th floor, but the homeowner, an outdoor advertising entrepreneur, was well served by the other two lines in Himmel’s diagram. Not only is the apartment’s design perfectly suited to the owner’s tastes (and somehow makes a city block-sized space feel intimate), it has held up beautifully to that most strenuous of décor transitions—from single living to newly married. “There’s something about the way Scott thinks,” says the homeowner. “He translated exactly what I wanted into this home and then later, exactly what my wife wanted.” The owner’s original wishes included the usual bachelor must-haves, such as the masculine-styled office modeled after a famous smoking lounge designed by Jean-Michel Frank in 1930s Paris. Its walls are
architecture Scott Himmel, Scott Himmel Architect P.C. interior design Scott Himmel, Scott Himmel Architect P.C. bedrooms 3
square feet 8,200