Beach dwelling melds into the coastal landscape

The House at Big Hill is situated near Victoria, Australia’s Great Ocean Road, characterized by a restrained material palette and singular form by Kerstin Thompson Architects. The triangular plan, semi-recessed into the sloping site, is orientated to take advantage of the 180 degree views towards the townships of Lorne and Airey’s Inlet and of Bass Strait through a filter of mature eucalyptus. Responding to the client’s preference for a solid building a natural grey concrete block was selected for the walls, both inside and out. In combination with a black ceiling and dark roof the 2,583 square foot (240 square meters) house is effectively camouflaged within its bush landscape.

The interior has an intimate quality achieved through the careful modulation of natural light and shadow and the use of timber accents which offset the concrete floors and blockwork walls. Views are captured by picture frame windows that become spaces to occupy through deep reveals and window seats. A contrast to the lightweight beach house this dwelling instead provides a solid retreat from which to contemplate the extremes of this beautiful west coast landscape.

Photos: Trevor Mein