Double Bay House

Categories:

  • Residential

Location:
Double Bay, NSW

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Set in a north-facing cove in Sydney’s vast natural harbour, the site borders a recreational park and a public pier which juts out into the bay. This element forms one axis for the site while a pristine beach, directly in front of the site, forms another.

From the principle park elevation that the new building appears as a collection of planes; a play on space, privacy and threshold. Graphite grey sail screens (made from “Kaynemaile,” a polycarbonate chainmail developed in New Zealand for the Lord of the Rings movies) are rigged just off the house providing privacy from the road. Timber cladding, plastered mass walls, a wood-clad soffit and the exaggerated cill of a bay window punched through the sail screens, are layered into further planes. This game creates depth in an otherwise linear façade and provides privacy while maximising light and views to the park.

The bayside wing of the house is one open plan space. Stairs, rather than walls, delineate the raised kitchen and family dining from more formal areas. These stairs extend seawards into the garden forming a line of axis drawing the eye out to the view and providing privacy from the public road alongside. The garden is raised above the towpath to provide additional privacy from the beach and to dissolve the distinction between the garden and bay from within. This is emphasised in the pool whose orientation and extension towards the water makes a clear connection between the two.

Materials were carefully chosen to site the house; the use of wood, white walls and travertine floors reflect the seaside setting whilst off-shutter concrete is used as a playful accent which, like the rendered walls, appears almost soft and textured in contrast to crisp folds of screen and aluminium.

Architects in association with SAOTA and ARRCC.

Photography: Adam Letch