There was a strong desire from the owners of this coastal home to feel like they were living on the water, looking out to the horizon from a ship’s deck

Designed by Andrew Bartholomeusz, SAAJ Design

From the architect:

This site sits on one of the highest topographical locations of Black-Rock, Beach Road, in a North-South axis. 

Solar orientation is opposite to bay views. 

Predominant features of local homes are a singular, centrally positioned, building form per house block, all having a large proportion of glass facing the bay regardless of the orientation. 

They are generally architectural, visually interesting, sculptural in form and highly visible on this edge of the coast. 

This house explores commentary on this street character, undulating landscape and the fluidity of the bay.

Looking to the horizon

There was a strong desire from the owners to feel like they were living on the water, like looking out to the horizon from a ship’s deck. 

Meticulous design analysis was given to achieving multi-tiered views through the different levels of the house, making one feel like they are hovering over the water’s edge – a biophillic response to the experience of space and place.

The building form is essentially an island surrounded by open 'green' space. 

It reads as a singular architectural form directed towards the expansive views in front of it. 

The 'nose' of the building is sculpted, curved and soft in appearance.

The roof form is highly articulated, appearing to float and reflect the topography. 

The highest part of the roof is in the middle width, raking from the front to the back, opening to the North, incorporating a highlight window. 

Sustainable passive design device

This sustainable passive-design device funnelled northern light into south-facing living. 

Coupled with high performance glazing, thermal mass insulation and seasonal shade control, the owners' connectivity to the natural environment increased.

The building materiality is of a simple sheer white render offset by a generous percentage of glazing and black, fine detailing. 

The contribution to the streetscape is that of a highly resolved architectural building with a distinct nautical language, motivated by the sea and beach location.

The spherical shapes of both the interior and exterior were inspired by a boat, something our owners love being on. 

Transitioning from the upper to mid-level feels like descending from a boat deck to a cabin below. 

A quiet space

A private master bedroom suite was positioned to the rear of the property in order to facilitate the owners' request to sleep in a quiet space. 

Careful placement of windows allows bay views and winter sunsets from the bedroom, shower & sauna.

Like a super yacht, we created a roof deck which used the building form to shield it from prevailing winds; an important owner requirement.

Despite four surrounding neighbours, rigorous digital studies enabled the upper-first floor, living, dinning, kitchen and alfresco to frame the 270-degree bay / city skyline view. 

Stepped plates and open views

Stepped over three plates and with a vaulted ceiling large enough to allow views through internal spaces, the home achieves uninterrupted bay views.

With frequent entertaining in mind, the owners' desired a theatrical experience when ascending through the house.

 From driving into the basement and taking the lift capable of stopping at all levels and arriving at the pinnacle upper first floor level, our owners (and their friends) are able to make a dramatic entrance into the home.

Explore this nautical-minded home
  See the related bathroom story

Credit list

Kitchen designer
SAAJ Design
Interior designer
SAAJ Design
Pool design/construction
Brynor Constructions
Lysaght Custom Orb – Surfmist, Standing Seam Aluminium, in White
Window/door joinery
Creative Windows – combination of commercial aluminium, frameless, double glazed, curved, low-e
Bedroom carpet
Super Tuft Escape Twist
Custom Charcoal Polished Plaster
General heating
In-floor hydronic
Trends International Design Awards (TIDA) Homes – Runner Up
Brynor Constructions
Kitchen manufacturer
Homestead Cabinets & Furniture; Corian contractor – Pro Solid
Landscape design
Paul Shaw Landscapes
Hebel PowerPanel XL with smooth render finish; metal sheet profile – Colorbond Ultra
Louvrte system
Main flooring
Porcelain Oak Timber tiles; Porcelain Terrazzo Asphalt, matt; Portofino Silver Natural Porcelain – all from Southern Tiles
Bathroom tiles
Porcelain Portofino' Silver tile,s from Southern Tiles; CDK Stone Neolith “Zaha” panels, from CDK Stone
Dulux Lexicon Half; Dulux Monument
Feature light fittings

Designed by: Andrew Bartholomeusz, SAAJ Design

Story by: Trendsideas

Photography by: Dave Kulesza

15 Jan, 2023

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