The Cliff House is a conceptual design by Australian architectural firm Modscape of a five storey modular home that clings to the side of a sheer cliff face. The concept was born in response to a growing demand from Australians wanting to live life on the edge. The design is a theoretical response to clients who have approached Modscape to explore design options for extreme parcels of coastal land in Australia.
Inspired by the way barnacles cling to the hull of a ship, a concept was developed for a modular home to hang off the side of a cliff as opposed to sitting on top of it. The home is visualized as a natural extension of the cliff face rather than an addition to the landscape, creating an absolute connection with the ocean.
As the design itself would make conventional construction prohibitive, the concept utilizes Modscape’s modular design and prefabrication technologies to deliver a series of stacked modules that are anchored into the cliff face using engineered steel pins. Entry to the home is through a carport on the top floor, where a lift vertically connects the user through each of the descending living spaces.
Internally, the living spaces feature minimalistic furnishings to ensure that the transcendent views of the ocean and the unique spatial experience of the location remain the integral focal point of the design.
Photos: Courtesy of Modscape
Long Courtyard House is a contemporary addition to a turn of the century terrace house designed in 2013 by SCALE Architecture, located in Alexandria, a suburb in the inner-east of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. By reorienting the courtyard to the side of the block, the project challenges the typical terrace configuration. It creates a north-facing side garden extending the full length of the addition.
The project is a compact building with a slender footprint, where each interior space relates to a new garden room. An equivalency of interior and exterior space is created, expanding the spatial relationship beyond the building envelope.
The addition is made up of two pure forms, each addressing its own garden. The concrete volume on the ground floor opens north to the long garden court, while a cantilevered timber box floating above opens east to a roof garden.
These discrete forms define the spatial arrangement – living takes place on the ground floor, inside the solid and elemental concrete form, while bedrooms are contained in the lightweight timber box above.
SCALE Architecture is a Sydney based practice committed to excellence in Architecture, design and urbanism. SCALE is a multiple award winning practice led by Matt Chan, established in Amsterdam (2002) and Sydney (2004). Our growing portfolio is extended by collaboration with architects, planners, artists and students both locally and internationally. The studio’s focus on architecture is cross fertilised by our active engagement in research, education, publication, exhibition and talks.
Photos: Brett Boardman
Black is back in the latest house to be completed by Luigi Rosselli Architects. This new house, built for a young family on a battle axe block overlooking Bronte, acts as a big balcony built to browse the beach.
The cooperative effort of project architect Corrado Palleschi, interior designer Alexandra Donohoe and the client has seen a graphic palette of black and white tones carried to great effect throughout the house.
Nowhere is the result of this bold application seen more clearly than in the main stairwell where the dark timber treads and handrail seem to float in light.
Australian based, this practice has a humanist approach to architecture and design, not eager to win awards, but always to instil good design and humane architecture that develops affinities, creating sympathetic buildings that flow and appeal. Working from the top floor of a converted Sydney warehouse, they are a team of architects and interior designers under the guidance of Luigi Rosselli and his three decades of international experience in Milano, Switzerland, New York and Sydney. Renowned for their houses, residential architecture, adaptive re-use and heritage designs, the studio has worked on a very wide range of projects: from offices to factories, from libraries to wineries, from childcare to chapels.
Photos: Justin Alexander
The contemporary transformation of North Bondi House was carried out by Australian studio MCK Architects, located in Bondi, an eastern suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. This project comprises a first floor addition and a ground floor reinvention to a space + light deprived semi-detached house.
Floorspace has been sacrificed on the first floor to create a double height open core to the center of the house, filtering natural light into the depths of the interior. Dead space has been otherwise eliminated where possible through open planning and recycling circulation functionality.
MCK is a young team of multi-award winning architects based in Sydney, Australia. We specialize in residential and commercial projects of high-quality finish and detail that are sensitive to context and brief. Our distinctive aesthetic is known for its classic proportion and geometric form. We enjoy using unexpected materials that challenge and sometimes even surprise. We also believe that good architecture and respect for the environment go hand in hand. Working with your ideas, we can nurture your project from conception to completion. Our innovative and inter-disciplinary skill-set, and extensive network of suppliers, means we can take a project from the first sketch right through to construction. Our team can help you make the right decisions and guide you through the process by bringing our creativity and can-do expertise to the table. Our work-style is collaborative, open and driven by our love of good design.
Photos: Douglas Frost
East Malvern Residence is a classic brick Federation house updated for modern family living by LSA Architects, nestled in the wide leafy streets of Malvern, a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. The clients brief was to enhance open space and add light whilst paying homage to the original era of the home through the choice of classic lines and materials. Taking advantage of the grand Federation proportions LSA designed the new spaces to include elements of height and light whilst including many new amenities.
The rear garden was maximized by the merging of indoor and outdoor zones with the use of large glass sliding doors, a discreet threshold and a consistent color palette. The outdoor space was subtlety demarcated to include practical areas for all members of the family. Internal sight lines were again an important consideration for the rear exterior and with the clever use of landscaping and a dark perimeter wall to emphasize depth. Architectural features were also used to enhance balance and privacy.
The bedroom and formal living zones benefited from some floor plan changes to allow for greater flow and the addition of a dressing room and en-suite for the master bedroom. With the majority of the family time planned to be spent in the new rear living room it was important to accommodate for a growing family of five.
The kitchen was designed around a large square island bench to allow for many members of the family to congregate. The sight line to the garden from the kitchen was considered by featuring staggered pendant lights over the island bench as opposed to the dining table with the added benefit of a kitchen focal point. The use of marble and wood paneling reference the original era of the home whilst offering a textural and luxurious element to the large space.
The entire house blends seamlessly to create a harmonious and luxurious home with the emphasis on modern classic design.
Photos: John Wheatley from UA Creative
Hamersley Road Residence is the conversion of an early 1900’s Australian workers cottage into a modern family home by Studio53, located in Subiaco, an inner western suburb of Perth, Australia. The external timberwork, moulded plaster, handmade tiles and flannel flower glass of the existing house give the home a distinct arts and crafts aesthetic. The house had been untouched for many years. The owners, architect and interior designer from Studio53, wished to provide a functional home for their family with flexibility for now and into the future. They also wanted to respect and enhance the existing craftsmanship.
As we were designing a home for our family, we wanted to optimize the space of the relatively small site area. We were able to do this through the use of pure forms such as the ‘courtyard’ and the ‘box’.
The conception of the ‘box’ is integral to the design of this house. Internally, the box is its own zone; bedrooms, bathroom and play room for the children. Externally the box defines the character of the extension, highlighting the change from existing house to contemporary home in a sympathetic but contrasting manner.
Throughout the design process, we re-used and recycled elements of the existing home to create a story of restoration. This included recycling bricks, light fittings, and even the old laundry trough, which is now a thriving herb garden. The original tin awning on the front of the existing house was resurrected with a coat of Dulux Weathershield in ‘Happy’ to match the ‘box’.
The upper level addition is delineated from the existing house by taking the form of a pure yellow ‘box’ gently placed on top of the ground floor behind the gable of the existing home. The Box is then further wrapped in a perforated screen to shade and protect it from the sun.
To the rear of the existing home we constructed a ground floor extension that envelopes a landscaped courtyard. Building to two boundaries and focusing the new ground floor rooms into the courtyard assisted in the creation and then blurring of the boundaries between indoor and outdoor. The intent was to provide multiple spaces of differing character, to be used at different times of the day and year, some inside and some outside.
The intricately patterned and visually permeable screen envelops the box on all sides. The pattern is inspired from the floral motif of the original carpet and fireplace tiles; although given a contemporary edge. This screen provides visual richness, shade and protection to openings whilst offering opportunities for passive surveillance of the street. At night, the screen is illuminated, glows and provides a moment of joy for the neighborhood.
Despite being untouched for over 90 years, the existing home was rescued and rejuvenated. The honest values of the house have been maintained, continued and extended into the new addition, to breathe life into the existing cottage and to create a “happy” and contemporary family home.