A dilapidated former care home has been transformed into award-winning supported living flats by social care provider Precious Homes. Interior Designer Penny Green worked with Altro to select a range of flooring options to deliver flexible solutions in different application areas throughout the scheme.

Located in the former Nethercest Residential Home in Dudley, the previously empty buildings have been redeveloped to a very high specification, resulting in modern flats and communal space for up to 25 people. The new supported-living flats provide bespoke, accessible accommodation for people with autism, learning disabilities and physical disabilities, with an on-site cafe that is open to the community.

Michelle Cox-Coley, Director of Business Development at Precious Homes, explains, “The new flats within – Osprey Mews, Goldcrest Court and Turaco View – have been developed in partnership with Golden Lane Housing, a leading social housing landlord for people with a learning disability, in response to demand for this type of bespoke accommodation alongside specialist support in the local area. We’ve worked hard to create bright and modern homes which are fully equipped to be accessible to all and can be tailored to meet the individual needs of the people we support. The new flats and the team we have in place provide support which is outcome-focussed and person-centred, encouraging individuals to become as independent as possible in their own homes.”

The Foundry Café is a key element to the project’s success. Run as a social enterprise, it offers opportunities for people to learn transferable workplace skills, and it provides a social hub for residents and the wider community. Interior designer Penny Green drew design inspiration for the café from Dudley’s industrial heritage. “I looked to the industrial revolution, the turn of the century – so important in the development of Dudley,” she explains. “The ‘foundry’ style is big, open and robust, so it was so important we chose products that delivered on looks but also worked to soften the feel.”

Penny chose Altro Ensemble™ modular flooring system – luxury vinyl tiles, in four modular sizes that can be mixed and matched to create unique designs from colour blocking to geometric patterns. It also brings the benefits of 15dB sound reduction and added comfort underfoot. “It was quite a dark space at the start, so we took all the walls down to open it up, and chose a light tone of flooring – Greige Rustic Oak.”

Although Penny and Precious Homes have used Altro products for years, this was their first project using Altro Ensemble. The flexible LVT modular flooring has delivered on many levels. “The feedback has been phenomenal,” says Penny. “People simply cannot believe it is vinyl and not wood, they are so complimentary about it. But even more importantly it delivers so many benefits over real wood in this space. It wears better, it feels softer, and its acoustic properties help soften the Foundry environment, which is so important for the individuals who will be accessing the café.”

Penny worked closely with Altro consultant Joe Hurst to find the right solutions. “We have some big spaces here and needed to avoid looking too institutional,” she says. “Altro Ensemble was ideal for that as we explored different patterns and layouts to define different areas. Using the same flooring but laid differently – basketweave in one area, plank to plank or herringbone in another. The results are incredibly effective.”

In areas with higher risk of slip, Penny selected Altro Wood™ safety flooring, choosing Vintage Cherry for the café as the red tones sit well alongside the foundry brick, and the cooler, greyer tones of Ranch Oak for the innovative, accessible and inclusive communal kitchen areas of Goldcrest Court.

Altro Wood is homely and stylish – a great biophilic safety option. The general purpose 2mm wood-effect vinyl safety flooring is available in a range of designs with different plank sizes and shades. It is designed to cope with medium to heavy traffic and, like all Altro safety floors, has sustained slip resistance for the lifetime of the floor.

The flats within this location offer different levels of support for individuals with learning disabilities, autism and physical disabilities. Support provided within people’s own homes is tailored to each person’s needs and also supports individuals who are stepping down from secure units and hospitals including those who may have experienced previous placement breakdowns. They provide tiered support and a range of accommodation options from self-contained flats to rooms with communal areas. The accommodation is flexible, with furniture that can be moved and rooms that can be configured to suit.

“The partnership with Golden Lane Housing means we work collaboratively to create a home for people – a calm haven, a safe space. We use a palette that allows people to add their own personality, and I spend a lot of time searching for safe, good value accessories – rattan, knitted – ones that don’t matter if they break,” Penny explains. “At the other end of the scale we can spend a lot on items such as magnetic curtain poles that might be pulled down repeatedly but can be quickly and easily reattached. We have to think through all angles of the environment so that it doesn’t become challenging.

“The Precious Homes ethos is that everyone goes on their personal growth journey – whatever journey is right for them. A lot of people help with that – occupational therapists, psychologists, therapists, carers and many more. For many people living in their own flats it is critically important that their home environment enables them to have a home that is safe and supportive of their goals and aspirations.

“The domestic, homely feel was so important, but we also needed products that are robust and above all safe,” explains Penny. Safety is paramount, which is evident in many elements of the interior, including the flooring, chosen due to a variety of properties to fit with the design themes throughout. Altro Ensemble with its acoustic and comfort properties, then in areas where sustained slip resistance was key there is Altro Wood safety flooring in corridors, entrances and reception areas, Altro Pisces™ specialist safety flooring in the bathroom areas, Altro Stronghold™ in the café kitchens and Altro Reliance™ in back of house and delivery areas – each product meeting a different need.

Tina Hanson-Jones is Project Manager across the Dudley schemes and she is full of praise for the environment that’s been created: “WOW is the best way of describing the interior of the flats. It is fresh, appealing but homely, very good taste. It is well thought out and not what supported living places are usually like. Everyone that visits wants to live here.”

Partnership was key to the success of the project. “Altro are amazing to work with from a specification point of view,” says Penny. “They understand what designers need and are constantly developing products to meet those needs. As a designer you are confident to use their products as you know they have been developed for all the right reasons and to provide solutions. We hugely appreciate the effort they go to for designers, and all that Altro products bring to our projects.”

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Altro Ensemble modular flooring has helped create a comfortable and elegant reading and learning environment for children and adults in a Swedish library.

The old library in Smedstorp was squeezed into a school, which meant visitors had to go through the school building to access it. Tomelilla Municipality moved the library to new premises and decided to allow visitors to access the library after hours on evenings and weekends with a library pass. They needed to find a floor for the new library that improved sound reduction and provided comfort underfoot. They chose to install Altro Ensemble.

Award-winning Altro Ensemble is a modular flooring system that gives complete design freedom to create stunning floors for interior spaces. From colour blocking to geometric patterns, the possibilities are as endless as the imagination.

The flooring has up to 15dB sound reduction with added comfort underfoot, making it perfect for front of house areas in hotels, including foyers and receptions, restaurant and café dining areas, retail, offices and student accommodation – any environment where design is key. With 39 colours and four modular sizes, you can mix and match to create unique patterns using colour and design.

“We chose Altro’s LVT flooring mainly because of its acoustic benefits,” says Lars Axelsson, Project manager, Tomelilla municipality. “We have invested in sound absorbents on walls and acoustic solutions in the ceiling, but we wanted to dampen the noise as much as we could to promote peace and quiet when reading and that’s where Altro’s solution fitted in well. It is a floor that is neat, quiet and easy to maintain, so everyone has been happy: the visitors, the staff and the cleaning staff.”

Ronnie Bergström, from Floors in Ystad, was the installer on the project. “Altro Ensemble was incredibly easy to handle which is always an advantage to an installer. In addition, it is a good floor for a library, as the underside of the tiles offers both sound reduction and provides a nice surface to walk on. The process was smooth from start to finish and the result was very good.”


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Altro Ensemble™ modular luxury vinyl tiles have helped to create a chic, dynamic and modern space with a new approach to bingo within the new Opera Bingo Club in Barrow-in-Furness.

Architects and designers, Bignell Shacklady Ewing, developed the new space and the company’s Interior Designer, Emily East, headed up the project. She said: “The brief was to create an energetic space with a contemporary, fresh approach to bingo that would attract customers of all ages.

“Our client was keen to represent the local area within the scheme, so we used a variety of bespoke murals, wall graphics and photographic designs to represent Barrow-In-Furness in an innovative manner.

“We felt the wood effect Altro Ensemble flooring system would enhance that contemporary feel the client wanted to achieve, and give it a chic and ‘funky’ feel. For example, we used the flooring to create an area of herringbone pattern that was unique to the bar area, using the tiles to enhance the bar overall design.”

This area featured three shades of Altro Ensemble. “The colour options worked well in this format, complementing the other interior finishes,” said Emily. “The overall effect is a wonderfully rich and contrasting pattern that is beautiful to look at; adding a superb quality feel. It makes a fantastic first impression.”

Altro Ensemble was also specified for the club’s book sales counter and various corridors, laid in straight planks.

“The beauty of this flooring is that it’s ideal for design-led projects, offering huge flexibility to create unlimited patterns with stone and wood effect modular tiles. It’s also hard-wearing and very comfortable underfoot, so it’s ideal for busy spaces where there’s a lot of traffic. This project was a great opportunity for us to try Altro Ensemble and we are very pleased with the results.”

Award-winning Altro Ensemble is a modular flooring system that gives complete design freedom to create stunning floors for interior spaces. From colour blocking to geometric patterns, the possibilities are as endless as the imagination.

The flooring has up to 15dB sound reduction with added comfort underfoot, making it perfect for front of house areas in hotels, including foyers and receptions, restaurant and café dining areas, retail, offices and student accommodation – any environment where design is key. With 39 colours and four modular sizes, you can mix and match to create unique patterns using colour and design.

Daryl Davidson, Head of Operations & Finance for the Opera Bingo Club, says: “When Emily East presented the Altro Ensemble flooring to us we knew it was perfect for the modern, high quality look we wanted and it worked so well with the overall design.

“We wanted this to be a bit different to other bingo clubs, and this needed to come across in the way we presented ourselves. The herringbone floor pattern in front of the bar is so striking, it’s one of the first things you see when you enter the club. A real focal point that sets us apart. The other flooring areas look superb, too, high quality and very in keeping with our ‘look’.

“This is a very busy club, so we needed a surface that wasn’t just great looking, but hard wearing too. One that would stand the test of time. The Altro Ensemble is fitted in the club’s high traffic areas, and it will stay looking good for many years to come. It’s comfortable to walk on, too, very easy on the feet.

“The cleaning staff are delighted with how easy it is to maintain, they mop it every day and it comes up beautifully every time. I would certainly recommend the flooring to anyone who is looking for beautiful, chic, comfortable and practical.

“The feedback we have had from staff and customers has been fantastic. They love the new club and there is a wonderful buzz here. The design and feel we have created is a million miles away from the ‘traditional’ bingo club, and we are thrilled with it. We have four other bingo clubs and two cinemas in the group, and we would certainly consider using Altro Ensemble there too.”


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Altro Ensemble luxury vinyl tiles have been used in hi-fi and home cinema specialist Fidelity Acker & Buck’s flagship Hamburg store.

The store concept includes six studios designed by renowned artist Margarita Kriebitzsch, giving Fidelity’s customers a realistic impression of how their chosen home entertainment system could look and sound at home. Each studio features different design and equipment, and there is also a headphone lounge for audio / video installation systems – a comprehensive sound universe.

For the 1,000m² of floor space for the studios on two floors, the designer Roman Mundhenk of WildWalls recommended Altro Ensemble modular flooring system, which offers 15dB sound reduction, to Fidelity. The premium floor combines the functional requirements of the studios with their aesthetic and high-quality atmosphere.

Fidelity took several months to design and implement the studios, which included testing Altro Ensemble at the studio. This showed its 15dB sound reduction meets the requirement for a noise-reducing environment. The high-quality flooring was also selected as it is extremely hard-wearing and durable, while being easy to clean.

“It was very important to us that the floor is absolutely quiet, so that our customers can hear very fine signals undisturbed,” explains Hans-Joachim Acker, Managing Director of Fidelity. ” The room acoustics are excellent.”

Altro Ensemble modular flooring system is the next generation of luxury vinyl tiles that combines design possibilities for creating stunning effects, superior function and durability, and ease of installation. The four modular sizes and choice of inspiring colours, textures and designs can be mixed and matched to create unique patterns. The low-reflective surfaces, good acoustic properties with 15dB reduction in impact noise, sound transmission, and 2.6mm thickness with added comfort underfoot and durability, make it perfect for reception and general circulation and living areas as well as student accommodation and dining areas in restaurants and cafés.

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