Project management of the entire renovation of the building and execution of a housing prototype in
10 Plaza Francesc Macià, Barcelona

Renovation and change of use of a building in the central district of the Eixample in Barcelona, with eight floors given over to luxury apartments.


Built between 1965 and 1969 and designed by the Swiss architect Marc-Joseph Saugey, the construction designated to host the prototype is an iconic property in the city, not only for its prime location in one of the squares that punctuates Avinguda Diagonal but also for its distinctive facade with “eyebrow” window hoods. Before the renovation it housed the offices of the multinational insurance company Winterthur.

The Brazilian architect Màrcio Kogan (Studio MK27) designed the interiors for the common areas and the show apartment.

The 15,700 sqm of built area are split between 9,000 m2 above ground and 6,700 sqm below ground. Between levels 2 and 8 there is just one apartment per floor. Level 1 comprises a housing unit and common areas for the exclusive use of the building residents: a 30-metre heated swimming pool made out of stainless steel, a dry and wet sauna, two gyms, men’s and women’s changing rooms, and a spa with two massage rooms and a staff room.

The show apartment is located on Level 3 and has special finishes designed by MK27. For the apartments on all the other levels (standard floors), and on Level 1, the finishes had to meet all the habitability regulations but the end users had the option of defining and carrying out the interior design of their respective homes. Each apartment has 60 m2 of living space.

On this occasion, Empty’s brief consisted in carrying out the project management, acting as the property developer’s technical and management arm rather than as the builder. The renovation and change of use project is certified with the sustainable building seal of BREEAM® (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology), which guarantees the best environmental practices. It was the first renovation project for residential use in Spain to obtain this certificate.