Focal Point

A glass stairway catches the eye in a Bethesda condo revamped by Wiedemann Architects

The owners of a penthouse in The Darcy in Bethesda wanted a contemporary upgrade. They contacted architect Greg Wiedemann to design a sleek remodel that would forge a better connection with the unit’s rooftop terrace. “The goal was a light-filled space that would draw you in and then up,” Wiedemann says. “We took the relatively dark and asymmetrical space and imparted clean lines and lots of light and glass, with enough wood to make it warm and inviting.”

The plan hinged on replacing a wood stair that divided the entry from the main living area with one made of glass. “The glass stair allows light to descend from the upper level and transforms the once-dark plan,” Wiedemann explains. Made of low-iron structural glass with stainless-steel anchors, the new stair’s glass rails and etched-glass treads also allow uninterrupted views through the unit. The adjacent wall is finished in Venetian plaster and the walnut base merges visually with the existing floor. Recessed LED strip lights illuminate the treads while complementary Tech Lighting glass pendants hang overhead.

Renovation Architecture: Greg Wiedemann, AIA, Wiedemann Architects LLC, Bethesda, Maryland. Renovation Builder: Alliance Builders, Annapolis, Maryland.