Dress circle waterfront parade new home by Accent Architects

Waterfront parade new home by Accent Architects
Story by: Colleen Hawkes
This house was designed by Gina Jones of countertop, interior design, kitchen, real estate, room, gray
This house was designed by Gina Jones of NZIA Fellow Accent Architects. A view of the kitchen and living area with an island, appliances, cabinetry, a striped couch, a rug and a chair.

Cities that border a harbour invariably have scenic roads along the waterfront. And these areas of premium real estate tend to feature an interesting mix of architectural styles that have evolved over time.

Wellington's Oriental Parade is a prime example. Much of the architecture along this route is familiar to locals and regular visitors, and subject to a raft of regulations, which is why inserting a new building into the mix was always going to be a challenge for the designer of this new house.

Architect Gina Jones of Accent Architects says the architecture needed to be in keeping with the local vernacular. But the house also needed to be designed so neighbouring properties would not be overlooked. And it had to have a double gable so the mass would not appear overwhelming when viewed from the properties on the hill behind.

"The materials were determined by the need for low maintenance the site is very exposed to salt-laden winds," Jones says. "Consequently, the cladding is charcoal-coloured zinc, which never needs painting. We also introduced red brick, which echoes the older red brick buildings in the street. Every fifth row of brick is recessed to create a subtle shadow or banding, which is matched by the depth of the zinc panels. This is similar to the banding on the trees along the beachfront it also mimics the pattern that appears on the sand on the beach after it has been groomed."

To reference the more traditional homes in the neighbourhood, Jones created a small front yard, complete with iron gate, brick pillars, a small garden and pathway. Steps lead up to the front door to create an elevated entry that is not face-to-face with passers-by.

This house was designed by Gina Jones of bed, bed frame, bed sheet, bedroom, floor, furniture, home, house, interior design, room, suite, wall, window, wood, white, gray
This house was designed by Gina Jones of NZIA Fellow Accent Architects. Seen here is a bedside table with flowers beside the bed.

The living areas on the first floor also have a degree of privacy, thanks to a long balcony, accessed through large bifolding doors.

In addition to the balcony, the living areas open to a courtyard at the rear of the house. A view of the harbour is still possible from this sheltered outdoor living area glass doors provide transparency right through the house.

For the owners and guests, the wow factor is not limited to the harbour view and architecture, however. It is also provided by the furnishings by Anna Cuthbert of Cuthbert Interiors.

"Every interior needs to reflect the owners' personality," Cuthbert says. "These clients are particularly passionate about the pale lime green shade that can be seen in several furnishings, including the custom area rug. And they love the rich watermelon shade of the sofas and chairs. These colours are vivid, but they are relieved by the walls painted in Resene Sea Fog. This grey-white shade also works well with the oak floors, which have a charcoal base."

Cuthbert says the informal sitting area, which overlooks the beach and harbour, is reminiscent of a traditional bach it even features '60s-style Awaroa chairs upholstered in a chunky boucle fabric.

This house was designed by Gina Jones of apartment, balcony, building, condominium, elevation, facade, home, house, neighbourhood, property, real estate, residential area, siding, window, gray, black
This house was designed by Gina Jones of NZIA Fellow Accent Architects. Here is the entrance way, with a gate and steps leading to the door.

The interior also incorporates heirloom antiques from the family's original homestead, including the dining suite and a commode.

"There is a sentimentality that we wanted to acknowledge by blending the old with the new," says Cuthbert. "Contemporary artworks sit above antique furniture pieces, for example, and the heirloom dining chairs are upholstered with a bright fabric. It is a little bit eclectic, but nothing looks out of place."

Practicality is also assured, says Jones. The clean-lined kitchen, which is positioned to maximise the view, has a scullery that provides plenty of storage. Further storage is provided on the lower level, along with extensive garaging and a car turntable. To future-proof their retirement home, the owners also requested a lift, which is positioned beneath a large skylight.

Oct 28, 2011

Credit list

of responsibilities Architect
Gina Jones, NZIA Fellow
Landscape designer
Hamish Moorhead, Moorhead and Newdick
Services engineer
Mike Stretton
Kitchen manufacturer
Jones & Sandford Joinery
Euroline ColorCote from
Paints and varnishes
Doors and windows
APL Smartwood from Wight Aluminium
Wight Aluminium
Heat & Glo from The Fireplace
Granite from Trethewey
Kitchen sink
Living room furniture
Striped sofa by Insight Furniture; watermelon sofa and chairs by Montreux Furniture with Romo fabric by Seneca
Living room rug and pendant light
Custom design by Anna Cuthbert, Cuthbert Interiors
Interior designer
Anna Cuthbert, Cuthbert Interiors (Auckland)
Structural engineer
John Wilson,
LT McGuinness
ZM zinc; Verita brick
Wood flooring
American oak from CTC Flooring
Riel Lighting
Door and window hardware
Häfele, APL and a selection from Sopers NZ
Cudby and Meade
Kitchen cabinets
Mr Glass
Tower from SpazioCasa
Fisher & Paykel
Dining chairs
Antique, upholstered in Nina Campbell fabric by Seneca
We know the specialists