Babbage Architects designed Summerset by the Park to present a welcoming, familiar aesthetic for residents

Exterior view of the Summerset by the Park architecture, condominium, corporate headquarters, daylighting, facade, house, mixed use, real estate, residential area, structure, walkway
Exterior view of the Summerset by the Park retirement village which was designed by Babbage architects.

A sense of independence and open space pervades Summerset by the Park retirement village. Most of the 74 linked villas have localised private street spaces, while many of the 71 two- and three-bedroom apartments offer views over the bowling green to adjacent Barry Curtis Park, or look out to sheltered communal spaces. In addition, the majority of ground-floor common areas and apartments open onto the bowling green or courtyard the feeling at Summerset by the Park is homey and comfortable.

Babbage Architecture went to great lengths to ensure the designs for Summerset by the Park would make residents feel at home in terms of visually familiar architecture and the ergonomics required for getting around easily. Project architect Frank Cleary says Babbage was asked by the client to create the principal building with classic architectural features that many of the retired residents would be familiar with.

"This resulted in the inclusion of columns and colonnades, reducing the main building to smaller sections to create a human scale that is easy to identify with," says Cleary. "Use of elevation materials, colour and texture all assist with this familiar-look ambience.

"However, while the architecture generally tames the scale of the main building, the central entry foyer of Summerset by the Park is on an unashamedly grand scale. A double-height foyer provides a giant-sized welcome to residents and visitors alike."

View of summerset by the Park's double-height entry architecture, ceiling, daylighting, floor, flooring, glass, interior design, lobby, gray
View of summerset by the Park's double-height entry foyer.

Besides the regular apartments, villas and common areas these include communal lounges, a library, cafe, dining areas, indoor and outdoor recreation areas and a hairdresser the complex also has 23 serviced apartments and 52 care suites. In addition, there is a reception and administration area, a central kitchen, a nurses' station and doctor's consulting room.

Many factors on the project are purpose specific to future residents. For example, as residents age they need greater light input to assist with carrying out everyday tasks. To this end, the residences and communal spaces have excellent natural light levels.

"Another important prerequisite for the village is easy accessibility for all residents," says Cleary. "The retired have varying degrees of mobility, and as they age this becomes more pronounced. Ensuring that thresholds were flush, grades and amenities were accessible and surfaces were slip-free were all considerations."

"Summerset has created a number of retirement complexes around New Zealand, but this is the first project the company has completed in the Auckland area," Cleary says. "Babbage has also designed several retirement villages, seven in fact, across the country. We are currently in the process of designing another project for Summerset in Warkworth."

View of summerset by the Park's double-height entry architecture, building, ceiling, condominium, daylighting, interior design, lobby, gray
View of summerset by the Park's double-height entry foyer.

Cleary says having professional designer Colour Options fit out the interiors and Natural Habitats provide the landscaping contributed to the finished appeal.

Besides designing the complex's architecture, Babbage Consultants' participation included structural, building services, civil and geotechnical engineering, and planning.

"This flagship Auckland complex meets all of Summerset's comprehensive requirements," Cleary says.

For details, contact Babbage Consultants, phone (09) 379 9980. Website: www.babbage.co.nz.

Story by: Trendsideas

08 Jul, 2009

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