Western Residence

Our client's brief was to design a home that connects with the family's history, a fifth generation owner who as a child has many memories and storeys about the property. All aspects of the ground floor design needed to be wheel chair friendly, i.e. no steps. The house also needed to cater for two families, therefore have the flexibility to separate into two 'houses' when required. The design needed to cater for the expansive southerly views yet be a bright and open home. Spacious, warm, light and soundproof qualities were also of the upmost importance.

The proposed building area was to be in the front corner of the original family property called 'Charnwood'. This location afforded 180 degree beach and water views, specifically along view lines facing south east and south west. The rear of this location featured a 'bush' outlook and the northerly aspect. Existing coastal manna gums scattered throughout the site needed to be considered, protected and incorporated into the home's design. The fall from back to front afforded the opportunity to balance the home's height to take advantage of the water views whilst also adhering to the site's height control.

The home's design focusses on achieving maximum water views through orienting sections of the house along the south east and south west view lines, thus creating angles which ensures natural light enters the house from the north. The secondary living space, the entertaining room, enjoys north light and water views through the heart of the house. All ground floor levels achieve smooth transitions and large internal doors sound proof rooms whilst maintaining views. Princes pier recycled timbers, homestead timbers and milled manna gum from the site have all been cleverly incorporated to ensure the family's enduring connection with this property.

Water views, natural light, accessibility and historical sympathy have all been successfully accomplished through this bespoke design. The house has the flexibility to become two, where the entry foyer's staircase is able to separate the upper floor from the ground floor, catering for two families at once. Subtle internal wall, staircase and decking curves were an important inclusion to help soften the straight lines and reference the adjoining beach. Expansive glass afforded views of the changing seascape, sunsets and blue skies, "a viewing pleasure". This home adheres to and nestles comfortably into the original estate's ambiance, exceeding our client's expectations.

Our client's uncle, Ivan Walker, sailed from Princes pier to Pozieres, France in 1916. The recycled timber posts and beams sourced from Princes pier now support the numerous gables around the house, a synergy which is extremely important to our client. This raw recycled Ironbark exudes strength and connects the house to the surrounding manna gums. Elements from the original homestead have also been utilised, decking boards surround the upper floor windows and the historical white gate re-hung. The stairs and sliding 'barn' door incorporate recycled blackbutt and the house name is proudly displayed on milled manna gum.