location: Sydney, Australia | architecture: Shaun Lockyer Architects | interior design: Justine Hugh Jones / Shaun Lockyer Architects | interior décor: Justine Hugh Jones | photography: Scott Burrows

On a spectacular waterside location in Sydney, an existing post-war house was demolished to make way for a new build. The clients liked the work of the Brazilian modernist architects – typically in concrete, stone and timber – which is a style of architecture that also resonates with the values of the appointed architect, ex-South African, Shaun Lockyer.

He recalls: ‘They wanted a design that would create a series of courtyards while also engaging with the Sydney Harbour views to the south. Further, this had to be a timeless home that encouraged the best of waterfront living and lifestyle. What resulted is a built structure of 1 100 square metres on a site of 1 720 square metres.’

To execute this brief the architects conceived a multi-level courtyard home with gardens at every ground level as the site steps down to the water, as well as on the roof areas as ‘green roofs’.

Says Shaun Lockyer: ‘We wanted to engage with the landscaping, water and light at every opportunity. The house is deliberately played down from the street and largely hidden behind an understated garden. We further minimised the notion of formality and entry to the house is via a sunken, north facing landscaped courtyard.

‘From this – the primary living level – the house expands as a transparent pavilion throughout which Harbour views can be seen at every level; the ground floor comprises the primary living spaces, while the first floor deals with the bedroom accommodation. The lower ground level is all about the Harbour, the garden, pool and entertaining and it includes a bar, a truly spectacular wine cellar and the gym.

‘Planning regulations in this area are a real challenge with anxious neighbours wary of any new building. It was necessary to take time to plan carefully and engage with all the required parties to make sure we had all our bases covered, which all worked to plan. The client brief required five bedrooms, two studies, three living areas, multi-car garaging and a storage house.

For the full article see Habitat #262 November / December 2017

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