A compelling connection

Located in Willoughby, Sydney, the Step Down House creates a compelling connection to the expansive rear garden and pool area

Story by: Trends Photography by: Peter Bennetts

Designed by Bijl Architecture

Architect statement:

The original poorly lit 1975 lean-to addition in this home was demolished, replaced by Bijl Architecture with a new kitchen, dining and living area opening to a large deck. A clean, minimal approach was taken, with whitewashed Tasmanian Oak flooring, and bifold doors opening the room completely to the timber deck, lawn and pool beyond.

With the original hallway extended to fan out into the generous open plan living space, the clients asked that the everyday living spaces be flexible and robust, with excellent passive design principles in place.

The clients requested that the new kitchen be both convenient to the open plan space and outdoor deck, while avoiding being ‘on show’ from the main circulation spaces and becoming dominant in the open plan area. In answer, our strategy was to position the new kitchen in the northeast corner of the room, making the kitchen discreet yet sizeable and highly functional. The taller kitchen elements , step-in pantry, fridge, storage – were placed along the edge of the upper level hallway, with a ‘glass panel’ allowing light and a balance of visual control and connection between the kitchen and hallway.


Overhead cupboards and timber veneer shelves to the northern wall are punctuated by the long slot windows, contrasted by the painted brick wall, tiled splashback and the single continuous timber shelf above the sink area. Integrated appliances fit in cleanly with the simple cabinetry design.

The light coloured L-shaped benchtop is contrasted by the island and breakfast bar design, with the custom concrete benchtop centering the kitchen space, its substantial presence controlling the circulation flows and functions. Copper pendant lights focus and proportion the space, and create material interest in the space.

Jun 14, 2018

Credit list

Architect
Melonie Bayl-Smith, Bijl Architecture
Cabinetry hardware
Blum Orga Line fitout (Cutlery, Utensil, Crockery), Blum Tandembox drawers, Hettich Le Mans corner unit, Porteroundersink unit and roller shutter to appliance cupboard, Steel rods supplied by Joiner for Wine Rack
Flooring
Tasmanian Oak
Splashback
Lea Ceramiche "City" Tiles - Bisanna
Taps
Dorf Crystal pull down mixer
Cooktop
Highland / Winnings
Refrigeration
Electrolux
Water dispenser
Billi
Cabinetry
Polytech Foam White Matt / European Walnut Matt (exposed shelves), white melamine internal cabinetry shelving and carcass
Benchtops
Caesarstone / Polished Concrete benchtop island
Lighting
'Zurich' pendant lights / Zaffero, LEDs / BrightGreen
Kitchen sink
Abey - Lugano drop in sink
Oven
Siemens / Winnings
Ventilation
Qasair / Winnings
Dishwasher
Bosch / Winnings
Awards
Trends International Design Awards (TIDA) Kitchens – Highly Commended
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