Architects: Keen Architecture
- Area : 203 m²
- Year : 2015
Photographs :Dion Robeson
Text description provided by the architects. Our client a house to entertain friends and family whilst having the ability ‘lock and leave’ the house with his busy lifestyle. In terms of an investment, he also wanted to maximise the site yield and take full advantage of potential views.
The central courtyard allows north light into the heart of the home and creates a core where both the kitchen lounge area spill outside via bi-fold doors. With the two storey void this also creates a very secure outdoors space. The double storey north facing glass soaks up the sun and warmth and spreads it throughout the house. The tinted glass also bounces a soft light back on to the adjoining two storey wall to brighten up a potentially dark southern wall. A feature timber screened balcony off the master suite punches though the steel portal frame again creating interest but also a lockable facade. The timber box has built in bi-folds which open to views of Claremont but can also be a private parents retreat. The flying roof form provides shade to the 'entertainers delight', a large open roof deck (engineered to take a future spa) which takes full advantage of river glimpses to the south, the City to the east. A car stacker provided the best solution to provide space for two secure car bays on site and is a valuable addition to the house.
The site is 6.7m wide (very skinny by Perth standards and expectations of usable space). Integrating a car stacker meant dropping the floor level as much as possible and raising the ceiling level to accommodate the stacker all whist staying within the absolute height limits. The balcony encroaches into the setback to maximise usable area and creates a private space. The timber batten enclosure makes it secure and reinforces the modern aesthetic. The roof shape reduces overshadowing and visual bulk and by following a semi-traditional pitch it allowed council to approve the Development Application without too much fuss.
Lot size is 203m2. The build area inc roof deck and garage is approx. 298m2 (ex courtyard which is about 36m2)
From the Client:
Tell me a little bit about the people who inhabit the home (what do you do for work and fun?)
I occupy the home with my girlfriend, whilst she is a fulltime law student with part time lawyer-type job I run a small technology firm. We’re entertainers, homebodies and enjoy pretending to keep fit so the Claremont location affords the amenity that suits our often hectic lifestyles.
What were you looking for in the home?
My brief to Kris was simple; make it low maintenance, make it stand out and please try not to spend all my money in the process. As a business owner time is a precious resource so low maintenance was a key priority during the design process.
With a block size of just over 200sqm jammed between two parapet walls, maximising light and space without sacrificing the aesthetic were other key priorities. I have always warmed to earthy tones and organic materials so Kris used extensive amounts of timber and concrete to create a warm and extremely functional home, he nailed the brief.
Why were you keen commission Kris as the architect?
Kris and I were mates from school and had kept in touch socially throughout years. I was introduced to the block by my girlfriend’s father, a local estate agent, who made me climb the roof of the existing home which revealed a breathtaking treetop view, uninterrupted through to the hills. The design had to take this into consideration along with for a requirement of three bedrooms plus a study, to ensure saleability down the track. Kris was always vocal about his passion for architecture from both an aesthetic and functional perspective. This coupled with his experience working with difficult spaces in Melbourne and his commercial acumen, meant Kris was the ideal man for the job. The house has exceeded my expectations on every level.
Describe the style and feel of your home, and what do you love about it?
I love this house. From internal courtyard that connects the kitchen to the living creating a singular space across the ground floor, to the magic piece of machinery that stacks cars, the house in an architectural gem. It’s light, secure and extremely functional with numerous bespoke designs options that create a truly tailored space. The house is inviting, and has plenty of space to entertain and escape be it a large gathering on the rooftop terrace, a quiet book on the front balcony, informal beers around the kitchen bench or long lunches in the internal courtyard shaded in summer by mature pear. Having only lived there a short amount of time, the house already feels like home.