Scenario has built a leading architecture practice restoring, enhancing and extending period homes throughout London. We take a unique approach to residential interiors, marrying contemporary lines with heritage details. Over a decade, we’ve worked with clients who appreciate the London vernacular yet aspire to a more open, accessible luxury. With their help, we’ve begun to transform the city’s old architectural landscape for a new generation.
Founded by two Architecture Association graduates, Scenario began with an ambitious and compassionate mandate: to develop a unique style that adapts to each client’s specific needs. We take a considered approach to our clients’ individual needs, producing highly functional interiors that incorporate a deep understanding and precise analysis of their lifestyle. Scenario’s tailor-made homes tell the story of the owner, not the architects.
Our landmark project Scenario House is an example of this dedication to lifestyle, showcasing the potential of London’s period housing stock. Located in Stoke Newington, Scenario house has been shortlisted for several prestigious prizes, including the 2018 RIBA London Awards. As fresh and functional today as when we imagined it, Scenario House demonstrates our customised approach to London living.
Your London Interior project
Many interior architects, London-based, can help you jumpstart your residential project. Scenario has undertaken this illustrated overview to help homeowners understand each stage of the process, whether for a renovation or home extension.
Most interior architecture in London still requires planning permission from the local borough council. Scenario has built a successful record acquiring permission for our clients. We claim home advantage across London and the Southeast.
We’ve also created this step-by-step guide to help you determine the requirements for securing planning permission. It can help anyone seeking consent from the council to alter a home in London. It sets out the nuts and bolts of UK planning and offers strategies for navigating the system, based on our own successes.
Discover if your architect has had success steering planning applications through your local council. Visit the “planning applications” page of your council’s website and enter the architect’s name in the search criteria.
Scenario is an established architecture practice focusing on contemporary residential design. We take on projects of every scale and scope, from home refurbishment, renovation and expansions to new-builds.
Working with Scenario Architecture
Our boutique architecture studio focuses on high-end residential interiors across London. Our bespoke architecture service tackles domestic projects of every scale, from interior alterations to full renovations and new-builds.
Scenario approaches each project from the client’s point of view, guiding homeowners through each stage of the design process, from the drafting table through local planning and tender to the final construction.
A RIBA Chartered Practice, we comply with the strict criteria of the Royal Institute of Chartered Architects. This protects all our clients with insurance, health and safety measures and quality-management.
We pride ourselves on taking up innovative 3D design and visualisation tools on all our projects – we’ve found that real-time visualisations and virtual reality are efficient tools for choosing finishes, maximising space, planning for fixtures and simulating natural light. Our reliable construction information comes from accurate 3D building information modelling (BIM) technology, saving our clients time and money.
This case study from the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) demonstrates the benefits of advanced technology for domestic architecture.
In our client's words
Great ideas and vision to help with our substantial improvement of a Victorian terrace. In our experience Scenario's method prioritises the final result. That may mean more professional fees or higher quotes from contractors, as they understand the exact requirements.
Great, professional service. Good drawings and models and ultimately passed planning at the first attempt with Hackney Council. Would certainly recommend!
Scenario Architecture have created an outstanding design and space that was beyond my expectations. The design was through their unique process of understanding the client’s daily scenarios and collaborating with the client to come up with a unique design. The design process is one of the most memorable parts of the process and they also stretched my existing ideas to help create this unique space. A stress free journey throughout the whole process which Scenario were indispensable by giving advice on many difficult design and build decisions.
We wanted to renovate our house in a conservation area in central London. Given this involved a complete demolition and new build with an extra floor on top, getting planning approval was always going to be tricky. Scenario did an amazing job on the new house 'envelope' and throughout the planning phase. We couldn't have wished for better from them and having succeeded in gaining planning approval owe them a very big 'thank you'.
Scenario were great at thinking imaginatively and coming up with a design for a ground floor extension that was more ambitous than other architects we spoke to. They also helped us find a contractor who was able to complete the project working within timescale and our tight budget. I would recommend for mid to large sized projects with sufficient budget to allow for full utilisation of their creativity.
Through the ages, when London has come up with an architectural style, the city has tended to stick with it for a while. This tendency is what makes a Georgian house so distinguishable from a Victorian, Edwardian, art deco and mid-century home. The elegant lines and flourishes of many urban English styles – and the devotion to lively paint colours – keep the structures from looking cookie-cutter. Still, even a novice can peg the era of a structure within a few decades.
The same goes for the interior. Visit a Georgian home in any English market town and you will be able to find your way around – from the drawing rooms to the kitchens, bedrooms and baths. Victorian terraced homes – the most common house style of London and beyond – are built to a similar template. There’s a double reception, a kitchen in the rear and stairs to the bedrooms and bath. Same number of windows, similar roof pitch. The few variations between them occur in the number of stairs, based on the grade of the property, and the number of bedrooms, based on the footprint.
For that reason, most contemporary architects have worked out space-saving and space-enhancing solutions that can be replicated from house to house. The loft extension, side-return extension and basement excavation have become commonplace moves across the capital and the Home Counties.
These strategies are popular because they work to expand a house when a family needs it. They bring in additional light, make kitchens more functional and acknowledge the different ways in which families are living today. Yet although these designs are classics, they aren’t the be-all and end-all. We at Scenario use the latest technology to recoup space and expand in all directions. We maximise hidden corners under stairs and in the eaves. And we find ways to improve the flow of a home that incorporate unusual angles and silhouettes.
Most important of all, we tailor every one of our home interiors to the homeowners and their lifestyle. Just as no two families are the same, no two kitchens, bathrooms or wardrobes should be. We consult with our clients every step of the way to make sure the way you live, work, sleep, cook, dress and play is reflected in their environment. For this reason, every one of our designs has a different look and flow. So on the outside, you may recognise the house as Victorian, Edwardian or mid-century; but inside, you won’t recognise it as a Scenario House.
Frequently Asked Questions
- As a dynamic practice operating in London’s premium residential market, managing projects remotely and conducting virtual meetings was a very familiar territory for us, long before the pandemic began and ‘working remotely’ became the norm.
- Our clients have very busy lifestyles and may move between several different locations, both within the UK and beyond, during the lifecycle of a typical project.
- To accommodate such client needs and enable us to run their projects smoothly we had all the technology and know-how associated with remote working in place for several years.
- Read our full (Virtual) Process
- Scenario based design – We start each and every project with a meticulous analysis of our client’s vision, requirements and aspirations. We do this by asking our clients to imagine their everyday scenarios living in the completed house and describe their desired interaction with it.
- Uniquely interactive - Our client’s deep involvement in the process does not stop with completion of the brief. Our design meetings are highly interactive, informal and fun.
- Designed to reflect you – Based purely on your lifestyle, aspirations and requirements and free from externally imposed concepts, metaphors and pre-conceptions, a completely fresh and unique design will gradually emerge and it will tell your story not ours.
- Collaborative – We start the conversation with planners early and advise most of our clients to seek pre-planning advice prior to submission of a full planning application. Our experience shows that when properly consulted and liaised with, most planning case officers will be receptive to conduct a professional dialogue, increasing chances of successes.
- Strategic – We tailor a custom planning strategy for each project based on its circumstances such as planning history, local context and specific challenging elements. We sometimes split applications or introduce minor tweaks to the scheme during the consideration period in conversation with the officers to prevent one contentious element from jeopardising approval of the main scheme.
- Professional – Our experience shows that the quality and clarity of the submission in terms of background research, planning history of the property and context, precedent and of course the arguments presented to support the case has a tremendous effect on success rate.
- The decision period clock only starts ticking once the application is validated by the Council, This requires then to check that the forms are completed correctly and that the submission contains all the necessary drawings, statements and reports.
- Although required by law to provide a decision within the statutory eight weeks period, it is not uncommon for councils to miss the deadline of the consideration period, normally only by a few days, sometimes longer.
- In some cases the council may ask us as your agent for an extension of time, this may be requested due to internal reasons or as an acceptable result of a professional discussion that we are conducting with them about certain aspects of the application that they are not sure about.
- Our experience shows that planning officers respond better to projects when they feel consulted and collaborated with. We find that when we truly listen to their often helpful and valid feedback and treat them as consultants for the projects and not representative of an evil enforcing authority, they tend to collaborate well with us and demonstrate increased flexibility.
- Although the council in theory have eight weeks to consider your application, in practice they are constantly overloaded. They will only look at your application in the last few days of the consideration period. If this is the first time that they come across a scheme that they were never consulted about, our chance to secure permission for you in a single attempt is significantly compromised.
- The standard practice is for the council to consider the full planning application as submitted and then issue a yes or no decision. Case officers are not required or even encouraged to enter a discussion with us or accept resubmission of minor changes to the proposed scheme during the consideration period.