Residential Architecture - Merewether 4

Residential Architecture - Merewether 4 from Webber Architects

By: Webber Architects  15-Oct-2013
Keywords: New Homes, Building Design, Architect

The clients’ brief for this beach-front residence was clear: they wanted views maximised, bold architecture, impressive entertaining spaces and adequate room for a young family to grow into. Situated on the bluff overlooking Bar Beach, the residence faces due east and enjoys vast ocean vistas, while the Newcastle city skyline is also visible to the north. The planning of the home was therefore arranged to capitalise on its panoramic setting, providing a constant coastal narrative to the clients’ day-to-day lives. However the context is decidedly urban, with adjacent buildings encroaching upon views from certain angles and neighbours’ existing sightlines requiring setbacks. These constraints informed the design and after developing a number of physical models, the concept for the residence settled into two main forms: a subtle, sweeping curved form supported within a solid, more rigid L-shaped masonry element. The broad curve has been planned in a way that, when within, the eye is directed outwards, down the beach and beyond, re-orientating the building to enhance views and protect it from the unforgiving coastal environment. However, the arc transcends purpose and function, by also bestowing the building with an exciting presence. Thus the limitations imposed by the context have fortuitously resulted in the striking visual aesthetic that the clients had hoped for. This cantilevered curved form is further emphasized by being clad in large-format dark tiles, providing a dramatic contrast to the clean, white finish of the masonry. Spanning the northern façade, the curve contains the living spaces, plunge pool terrace and master bedroom, all of which benefit from the ample natural light and breezes provided by the north-easterly aspect. The dining, kitchen and living areas are directed towards the east and open onto a large deck to create a spectacular venue for entertaining family and friends. The black and white colour theme of the façade is continued internally, creating an unashamedly glamorous space. A three storey bespoke spiral staircase provides an additional element of luxury and links the three levels of the residence. With a young family and regular visitors the clients wanted enough space to comfortably accommodate their future needs. The middle level consists of children’s bedrooms, play area and a formal living area/theatre which opens onto a garden terrace to the north and deck spaces to the east and west. The sunken basement level includes a four car garage and guest quarters, which also have access to the east-facing courtyard. The main services and circulation areas have been positioned towards the southern boundary, while wet areas have been stacked along side the central curved stair and lift. Other unique details include a ventilated tile façade system (closely developed with Earp Brothers) and viewing panels from the residence’s entry into the plunge pool (to allow filtered light into the centre of the home). This executive home called for expert consultants and excellent coordination between all specialists helped to achieve effective and innovative design solutions within the budget and brief.

Keywords: Architect, Architectural Design, Building Design, House Design, New Homes

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