The King Prop: DETROIT


Prince Concepts purchased this property from Mr. John King, a Liberian immigrant who had lived in this house for 15+ years. The project’s name comes from his. The house sits directly adjacent to True North. After the construction of True North, Mr. King approached Philip Kafka and told him he had a brick house he wanted to renovate and live in by the Motor City Casino. Mr. King asked if Kafka would be interested in purchasing his house - a sale would give him the necessary funds to renovate his Brick home. The two agreed, and a deal was done for a 15,000 SF site, and 2,000 SF home with over two decades of deferred maintenance. Shortly after purchasing the property, Kafka met Julia Griffin of Willa Rose Floral, and began renovating the house to serve as her home and studio, with 12,000+ SF of the property serving as her flower farm. The concept for the renovation was simple - Prince wanted to preserve the shape, scale, and intent of the former house, and minimize the number of materials used in the project. The entire exterior is corrugated metal, and the interior is 100% plywood. The inspiration for the living spaces came from thinking about how a monk would live - simply - only seeking light, space, and emphasizing, and hence celebrating, the holy nature of water. The home has some very special moments - double height spaces with skylights, a 100% polycarbonate shower that protrudes off the back of the house, celebrated wash basins out in the open, and spectacular views of True North and the Flower Farm. The result is a 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath home that is both simple and spectacular.




CORE CITY, Detroit

16th St & Hancock

ARCHITECT of record:



2,000 SF House

15,000 SF Site


House renovation



renovation phase