Scenario counts itself among the top residential architecture studios in London. Over more than a decade, we’ve amassed a portfolio of high-end projects across the capital, adding contemporary curves to period homes, and building distinctive, highly functional spaces.
We established Scenario in 2007 with a vision to develop a uniquely collaborative architecture. Our boutique practice takes a considered approach to our clients’ habits, hobbies and aspirations, delivering highly functional contemporary living spaces that tell a story about the owners – not the architects.
Our landmark project Scenario House has been covered widely by the media and shortlisted for several prestigious architecture prizes – including the 2018 RIBA London Awards. It demonstrates our innovative and tailored approach to domestic architecture.
Your London project
Starting your project with our residential architects, London
If you plan to take on a residential architectural project in London, we’re happy to help, whether you’re planning a home extension, renovation or new-build.
We’ve created a brief illustrated overview to help you understand each stage of the process.
Most London architecture projects require planning permission from the local council. With our successful record securing planning permission on behalf of our clients, we can claim home advantage across in and around the capital.
TipDiscover 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.
AdviceTo help you understand what it takes to obtain planning permission in London, we’ve created this helpful handbook. Download it below.
Your London project >> Scenario Architecture
Working with Scenario Architecture on your residential project
Scenario is a boutique architecture studio focused on high-end residential projects in London and beyond. Through our bespoke architecture service, we tackle domestic projects of every scale and complexity, from interior refurbishments to full renovations and new-builds.
Our friendly and highly skilled team can take you step-by-step through the challenge of designing your new space. We’ll collaborate closely with you from the initial drawings, detail design and planning, guiding you through the tender and construction process and completing your house on time and on budget.
Early adopters of new drafting and building technologies, we use innovative 3D design and visualisation tools as a standard for all projects. Our experience has shown that real-time visualisations and virtual reality are extremely efficient tools for choosing finishes, fixtures and fittings, and simulating natural light.
We use 3D building information modelling (BIM) technology to produce reliable construction information, so all our project data comes from an accurate, coordinated 3D model. Using this cutting-edge technology collaboratively with consultants and contractors is proven to save our clients time and money.
A Chartered Institute of Building case study featuring a Scenario project demonstrates the great benefits of this advanced technology for domestic architecture.
Scenario Architecture is a RIBA Chartered Practice. We comply with the strict criteria of the Royal Institute of Chartered Architects, covering insurance, health and safety and quality-management systems.
Your London project >> Further reading
Out of all the great cities in the world, London has perhaps the richest stock of residential housing with the greatest potential for improvement. But the historic and delicate nature of many houses in the capital, along with the many complicated residential planning and development regulations, means starting your own project can be daunting.
Going directly to a builder or home-extension specialist means the individual foibles and characteristics of your house may be missed in the process of improving in a standardised fashion. Problems crop up along the way that should have been foreseen in the design phase. Hidden potential can be overlooked and materials used without consideration for quality or sustainability.
Using a qualified architect attuned to your personal space will avoid problems later in the process and actually save you money in the long run, adding untold value. Which way does your home face? Where on your property do your neighbours’ views land? Do you plan to expand your family? Do you garden? Where do you spend your time? Do you work at home? Do you cook or entertain? Play music? Are you physically robust? How tall are you? How often do you clean? An architect will pore over these questions and more to land on a specific, bespoke design that speaks to you and your family.
To find a trustworthy architect, visit the website for the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). It keeps a project database of more than 40,000 case studies that can match you with precisely the specialist you need for your home within your budget. The professional membership body provides the tools you need for discovering the top practitioners in your area, for your style and in your price range.
Once you’ve found an architect you’ll be happy collaborating with, the process of transforming your home will go much more smoothly. You’ll have the support of an experienced practitioner, starting from the party walls inward, designing hard-working spaces like the kitchen and bathrooms to pushing all those detailed specifications through the planning process to dealing with builders, trades and decorators on site.
At the end of the process, you’ll have a property you’ll want to live in forever. At the very least, it’ll increase in value for you and any potential buyer.
Your London Project >> In our clients 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.
- 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.