The sleepout is located within the grounds of an existing family beach house in a secluded coastal setting. Our client required a structure providing additional accommodation for family and friends that would sit sympathetically within the native landscape and create a clear architectural distinction to the existing house.
Our design concept was to create a building as a landscape element that forms a backdrop to the existing tennis court and is nestled within the surrounding vegetation. A rectilinear timber pavilion was proposed, with weathered grey cladding and climbers growing up over the walls to create the appearance of a simple timber fence within the landscape.
The scale of the building is deceptive; appearing as a single storey structure from outside, whilst accommodation within the building is split over five levels. A central living and recreation space is positioned just above court level and three separate bedroom zones are located at lower and upper levels. A concealed roof deck provides private open space for guests to enjoy views over the property and hills beyond.
This double storey addition to a detached Victorian house in Northcote creates a bridge between the existing building and deep rear garden. A new enclosed side entry provides access directly into the family living area and transforms the original single fronted terrace into a multi-zoned family home with strong connections between two separate bedroom areas and a central communal living space.
A linear glass roof separates the historical and contemporary parts of this house bringing natural light into the heart of the living room. Existing external red brick walls are retained to form a backdrop to the new living space and are complemented by a natural material palette of polished concrete, stone and timber.
The angular roof form of the new living space and submerged bedroom area sits comfortably against the heritage building to create a dynamic and respectful contemporary addition.
This refurbishment of an existing double storey terrace house in South Melbourne opens up the entire ground floor and encloses an existing courtyard to create a communal multi-zoned family space that incorporates a lounge, quiet sitting room, and dining/kitchen areas. The family’s values of living and working together in shared spaces underpin this architectural design solution.
Our client requested that the design focus on the creation of interesting internal spaces that would allow the family to enjoy time together whilst also providing separate zones for studying, reading, socialising and relaxing.
A sculpted timber stair wraps around a sky lit void and acts as a central ‘node’ which connects the main living space with a first floor studio, concealed master bedroom and children’s bedroom zone. The existing concrete floor slab has been ground and polished to expose the dark bluestone aggregate, which is offset against crisp white walls and refined timber and stone joinery elements to create a light, serene space with a natural, refined aesthetic.
Photography by Michael Kai
This refurbishment and extension to an existing Victorian style house in Armadale focused on the creation of a discreet new addition to make the most of a compact site.
We proposed a 2 storey building form with a compact footprint to retain as much of the rear garden as possible. The upper floor houses a master suite and terrace designed as fully private spaces with controlled views of the rear garden through a fine timber screen. The first floor is set back to create a recessive building element when viewed from the rear garden and neighbouring property.
An open plan living room at ground floor features polished concrete floors, warm white walls, refined timber joinery elements and floor to ceiling glazing. A clean, natural palette of materials is used to bring texture and warmth to the space whilst still allowing the clients to personalise it as they wish. Natural timber elements, dark zinc standing seam cladding and bespoke window joinery give the building a crafted and enduring architectural quality.
Photography by Michael Kai
The Monash University Peninsula Campus Childcare Centre project focuses on making small but meaningful modifications to improve the way children and staff are able to use the facility. Early learning spaces, change and bathroom facilities are renovated and extended to improve safety and amenity for staff and children. A glazed wall at the end of each learning space opens up to engage with the outdoor deck and landscaped play space.
The brief called for a series of minor modifications to one side of an uncompromisingly symmetrical building. The building is pragmatic and understated yet comfortable and elegant at the same time. We turned away from making an ‘architectural statement’ as this was not what we considered the appropriate design response. Our design challenge was to extend the main frontage with a contemporary addition that respects the character and aesthetics of the existing building so well that it appears as though it was always meant to be there.
This renovation to a 1960s modernist house in inner suburban Melbourne focuses on making small modifications to transform the way the house is inhabited whilst maintaining the integrity and character of the original architecture.
Previously separated living, dining and kitchen areas are connected to create a spacious and carefully zone family living space. Small compartmentalised rooms within the existing house are consolidated and modified to improve their feel and functionality. This project demonstrates how a considered approach to design can create contemporary spaces that celebrate and enhance the character of this modernist home.
Williamstown Library receives Commendation for Urban Design at 2014 Victorian Architecture Awards
Williamstown Library named as one of the '1001 Libraries to See Before You Die' by the International Federation of Library Associations
The architecture of the new Williamstown Library is inspired by the juxtaposition of fluid water and boats against the rigidity and permanence of sea walls and buildings along the Williamstown foreshore.
This project was undertaken in association with Sally Draper Architects and is an elegant, functional building respectful of the existing historical town hall.
A translucent polycarbonate wall supported on slender composite steel and timber ‘ribs’ curves around a double height main reading room allowing natural light to permeate deep into the space. This ephemeral element is counter posed by a linear bluestone spine which anchors the building and protects the soft reading room from the noise and chaos of an adjacent retail car park.
Sustainable design principles such as a large rainwater storage tank, sub-floor ventilation labyrinth, high level roof ventilators and automated windows are incorporated into the architecture to maximise natural ventilation, passive solar performance and minimise energy and water consumption.
The new library adds vibrancy to this historical precinct by acting as an urban bridge between the town hall and the adjacent retail precinct via a series of large public decks, multiple access points, and a glazed link to the town hall.
Photography by Trevor Mein
This project involved refurbishment and extension of an existing heritage home in Armadale. The brief called for elegant and striking contemporary design solution to transform this double fronted Victorian style house into a generous family home.
The design concept proposed a sculptural two level addition which connects seamlessly to the north facing landscaped courtyard, terrace and garden. Special consideration was given to preserving the historical streetscape, with the new addition separated from the existing building by a glazed walkway to provide a large setback that ensures it is not seen from the street.
A series of simple folded planes have been utilised to define spaces, control views, shade windows, and articulate the form of the building so as to reduce the visual impact of the first floor when viewed from the rear garden.
Photography by Michael Kai
A medium density townhouse development in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne makes the most of its steeply sloping site to respond sympathetically to the garden character of its residential context.
Our approach to the design of these town houses focused on creating innovative medium density living that maximises a sense of space, light and outlook whilst achieving efficient, functional planning within the development budget. The townhouses are architecturally designed to relate respectfully to their residential streetscape and take advantage of views across a landscape reserve.
Alterations to a compact inner city Victorian terrace house in Fitzroy to unify a series of small, disparate rooms into an open family living space to be the heart of the home. This project included the removal of several load bearing brick walls and the partial enclosure of a side courtyard to consolidate existing spaces and rationalise the laundry/bathroom area. The design of the new spaces focused on achieving contemporary simplicity and elegance that remained respectful of the historical character of the original home.
A linear skylight above the kitchen brings abundant natural light into the room. Natural white walls and finely detailed kitchen joinery elements conceal storage and appliances and provide an unobtrusive neutral backdrop to the room, allowing the family to personalise the space as they wish. Efficient planning of spaces and attention to detail was the key to achieving the client brief for a practical and refined design outcome within a constrained space and budget.
Photography by Michael Kai
This renovation and addition to an existing Victorian house responds to the changing needs of an active, growing family and creates striking yet flexible and relaxed spaces for them to enjoy for many years to come. This project includes renovation to the existing historical residence and the addition of a double storey extension to create a multi-zoned family home. An open study area and feature stair are set within a sculptural double height void which becomes an open transition point within the house between old and new.
The new addition features a large open plan living space at ground level and a children's zone on the first floor. An open plan living and entertaining space is designed to allow flexibility with the arrangement of furniture and features a full width sliding glass wall opening onto a rear terrace and garden. Natural materials and textures are used throughout the project with durable weathered timber cladding and screens to the first floor. Polished concrete floors, composite stones and Australian hardwoods are used internally to create comfortable, robust and low maintenance spaces. Soft whites, muted color tones, natural timbers and dark polished concrete are used to create a sophisticated yet relaxed urban family home.
Photography by Michael Kai
This house is perched on the side of a steeply sloping hill with dramatic 360 degree views over the surrounding valleys and city skyline beyond. Our client requested that a bold and expansive family home be designed to take advantage of the spectacular views offered by this unique property. With a vertical drop of 70 metres across the site, and access only provided via a steep narrow driveway, this site presented a buildability challenge that required our architecture to celebrate the topography of the land.
The house is shaped to be a long and thin, orientated along the contour lines, and split over multiple levels to minimise cut and fill and maintain a close relationship to the land. The main entry, guest area, home theatre and utility spaces are located on the lower ground floor. An expansive living, kitchen, dining and children’s areas occupy the main floor. Full height glass walls provide uninterrupted views of the projecting pool deck and surrounding countryside.
A master suite and study are positioned uphill behind the main building to create a private sanctuary for the owners. The building is constructed primarily of concrete with solid concrete floor slabs and thermally insulated concrete panel walls. Exposed thermal mass used in conjunction with an efficient geothermal heating/cooling system both work to moderate fluctuations in the building’s internal temperature to reduce overall energy consumption.
Following the completion of a master plan for Animal Aid, Mitsuori Architects were appointed to complete the detailed design for the proposed redevelopment of the entire facility, and manage the process for obtaining council approval.
Animal Aid's ambition is to create a world class facility for the care of animals and our proposal places animal welfare at the core of the design concept. Through the integration of architecture and ecological landscape design, this design solution creates a nurturing environment for the animals, maintains the highest standard of safety for staff and volunteers, and improves the quality of the local environment through site wide water management and a constructed wetland. The site is configured to create a central ‘hub’ to enable staff and visitors to easily navigate between buildings, encourage a sense of arrival and activity, and separate visitors from service circulation areas.
The architecture of Animal Aid is based on a series of ‘fingers’ that reach into the surrounding landscape. Linear rain gardens and planted walls running alongside each finger capture rainwater and provide the animals with a sense of open space and calm. These rain gardens are also an important part of the landscape design and water management strategy. The on-site biological treatment wetland and water storage lake have been designed to meet over 90% of the facilities water needs. Natural ventilation and energy efficient heating and cooling systems are employed to significantly reduce energy and water consumption across all buildings.
A veterinary hospital, attached catteries and administrative offices are located in a taller central building positioned between the two main kennel buildings. This building brings together all functions that must be easily accessed by the adjoining kennel facilities. An education centre and cafe are located on the opposite side of the central hub to provide staff and visitors with a place for learning and respite. The first phase of this building was completed in 2010.
The Animal Aid Redevelopment project has received planning permission and is currently awaiting funding to proceed with the next stage of work.
The Animal Aid Education Centre (Stage 2) sits at the centre of the facilities main hub. It contains multi-purpose community and training spaces for Animal Aid's expanding education program. A temporary Adminstration and Training Building (shown to the right) was designed as the first stage of construction for the Education Centre that is proposed as part of the redevelopment master plan.
The Administration and Training Building is designed to meet a short term need for staff accommodation and training facilities ahead of the site wide redevelopment. It will ultimately be enclosed by a series of multi-purpose training rooms and be transformed into a utility and services spine for the larger facility. This building was constructed as prefabricated modules to enable installation on site within one week to minimise disruption to the operation of the facility. This efficient and adaptable design solution has enabled Animal Aid to meet its short term needs without compromising its long term ambitions for the site.
Photography by John Liu.
A new beach house situated on a sloping site at the Victorian coastal town of Aireys Inlet. This project was designed in collaboration with Turco-Hunter Architects. The beach house is nestled amongst native bush land and is designed to be a comfortable and robust holiday home for family and friends.
The building is configured as a series of ‘wings’ - a main living area, private master bedroom zone and a semi-private children's bedroom area - to provide the family with a range of communal and private spaces that capture views across the surrounding country side. The main living space features a polished concrete floor and perimeter seats with integrated steps leading to an outdoor deck. A private master bedroom and children’s wing are nestled into the hillside to provide a sense of enclosure and seclusion.
Natural materials and finishes were selected to be durable and easily maintained. Sustainable design strategies such as operable solar shading, passive natural ventilation, exposed thermal mass and rainwater harvesting are integrated into the building envelope.
A renovation and addition to a single fronted Victorian cottage on a compact inner city site which overlooks a park to the front and is overlooked by an apartment building to the rear. This design incorporates a flexible plan to efficiently utilise both the indoor and outdoor spaces whilst maximising views across parkland from the first floor and creating a secluded courtyard space at ground level.
A double storey volume to the rear houses the main living space and two additional bedrooms. A partially submerged open plan living, dining, and kitchen space opens onto a landscaped courtyard and outdoor living room. The height and enclosure of this structure protects the entire living space from being overlooked by the apartment building to the rear. Privacy to the first floor bedrooms and prevention of overlooking to neighbouring properties is achieved through the use of full height glazing which looks out onto a small terrace protected by a crystalline translucent polycarbonate screen.
Full height sliding and pivoting doors are utlised throughout the house to conceal and transform the functionality of spaces. A small landscaped central lightwell brings daylight and natural ventilation into the heart of the house whilst providing glimpses of greenery from many of the internal spaces. Parkland views to the west are controlled by a series of vertical window ‘fins' with motorised blinds within each bay to provide privacy and solar shading. A large rainwater tank is submerged under the courtyard to meet the water needs of the toilets, laundry, an outdoor utility area and garden irrigation for this home.
An extensive re-working of a double storey terrace house in South Melbourne. This project transforms a traditional compartmentalised two level home into a contemporary open plan three level family residence. A sculptural three storey atrium with sweeping curved stair links communal living areas across all floors and provides natural light, ventilation and visual connectivity between each space. This atrium is also used as a thermal chimney to encourage natural ventilation and enable effective overnight purging of heat from all internal spaces. Fluid internal geometry and operable walls are utilised within the narrow rectangular footprint to provide subtle definition to each zone and enhance the feeling of spaciousness.
This apartment building is located on a tight landlocked urban site within an historical residential precinct, accessible only via a series of cobbled bluestone laneways. It presented a unique design challenge requiring an innovative approach to create architecture that is a contemporary landmark whilst being highly respectful of the historical context. Our design for this four storey boutique residential apartment building is based on the joyful experience of discovering the unexpected. As a building without street frontage this idea becomes apparent even as you approach the site, as the building itself can only be ‘discovered’ through an opening between terrace houses at the end of a narrow laneway.
Three curved concrete 'shells' are positioned to form a vertical open air core which allows natural light and ventilation to penetrate deep into the building footprint. This central core creates multi-orientated apartments that access a level of natural light and ventilation not found in most modern apartment buildings. Each ‘shell’ creates spacious and fluid internal spaces with the apartments. Crafted timber and glass external facades look out over the historic urban fabric of Carlton North and create a naturally textured backdrop to surrounding properties. ‘Secret’ roof top gardens nestled into the top of each shell provide residents with abundant private open space and city views.
Our Collingwood Studio is located in one of the historical red brick Foy & Gibson Woolen Mills buildings. The fit-out of the meeting room and library area aims to create a simple, flexible and light filled open plan space for client meetings and presentations.
The main work room is enclosed within a crafted timber box constructed from local Australian hardwood paneling. This element forms a monolithic textural backdrop to the space. Graphic signage, a perforated timber screen and studio door are carved into the wall surface.
Simple white furniture and joinery elements are used to create a functional and elegant work environment.
The design of this renovation and addition to an existing 1990’s home was driven by the clients desire for a striking contemporary home and by unusual planning and building constraints particular to this site. The existing building was built below the natural flood level and was severely water damaged during the early part of the design process. A large stormwater easement bisects the site at the front and resulted in an original front facade with no discernable character. Major modifications to the main frontage were required to transform its plain single dimensional elevation into a elegant building with street presence.
Our design involved creating a new entry canopy, deck and carport at the front of the property to provide a bold entry and carport structure. Retaining walls are hidden below the external decks to divert flood water away from the house prevent future flooding. A collection of unusually shaped internal spaces were modified to achieve multi-zoned and flexible living, dining and kitchen spaces located around the central courtyard.
Located in a quiet Collingwood street, this series of three storey commercial offices pays homage to its semi-industrial streetscape and abundance of small workshops and galleries that characterise the area. Facades of sliding laser cut steel screens are fitted within raw concrete shells. These screens provide necessary privacy and solar control to the interior whilst presenting a crafted and ever changing face to the street.
At street level solid timber doors set into clean glass shopfronts create opportunities for customised retail displays within a cohesive building frontage. This building has been designed as a striking yet sympathetic insertion into the unique urban fabric of Collingwood.
This development of an existing Edwardian style shopfront included restoration of the historic building and reinstatement of their use as retail shopfronts, plus the addition of a separate studio workshop at the rear. The studio is concealed behind the existing historical facade and accessed via a rear laneway. Our design concept for this ‘hidden’ building was to create a simple rectangular shell that relates to the scale of adjacent warehouses with only the laneway entry point to the studio being marked by a full height timber facade with a full width sliding door and screened window above.
This house for a young family is set on a narrow, steeply sloping site within a residential estate sited inside a former quarry. Our design aim for this project was to create functional and delightful spaces on what is essentially a suburban 'terrace' house block. The house is split over 5 levels wrapping around a central courtyard. A series of half flight stairs and carefully composed openings between rooms and courtyard allow us to achieve ergonomic transitions between levels and create interconnected spaces, whilst allowing the building to maintain a close relationship to the natural topography of the site.
Natural timber and glass are used to bring warmth and texture to the most inhabited spaces and act as a counterpoint to the solid concrete external walls. Subtle references to the former quarry include the ‘stratficiation’ of the home over several levels and the design of dramatic sheer walls to the main courtyard which evoke a sense of being enveloped by the building.
A boutique residential development on a steeply sloping site in Hobart comprising 4 free standing homes perched on an open hillside and accessed by a private driveway. Each house sited to take advantage of spectacular views over the surrounding landscape whilst maintaining privacy between adjacent buildings and open spaces.
The designs are composed of a lightweight timber and glass first floor element with floating roof perched above a solid masonry base partially embedded into the hillside.
Our client requested a renovation and extension to a freestanding Art Deco residence. This project required the creation of beautiful, functional spaces with a focus on environmental sustainability, and needed to be done within a very low budget. The design proposal included renovation of the existing house and the addition of a new kitchen and living room to enhance the existing spaces and improve the overall environmental performance of the building.
Reverse masonry veneer construction (concrete internal walls and external timber cladding), an insulated concrete slab, and carefully positioned roof and side glazing is to be used to improve the thermal performance of the building envelope and achieve reduced energy consumption and greater occupant comfort all year round. Reclaimed and recycled timbers are used throughout the project with all new joinery constructed from natural clear coated plywood. A timber deck and pergola structure to the rear provides a comfortable outdoor area and place for the family to ‘perch’, playand relax in the rear garden.
This family house in suburban Melbourne is formed by the creation of two distinct horizontal volumes. The first volume is a partially submerged concrete spine which houses the main living spaces, a basement garage, workshop, gymnasium and first floor children’s bedroom area. Monolithic concrete walls are punctuated with slot windows to control light, ventilation and views to and from private spaces. The main living area is double height volume with full height glass to flood the space with natural daylight. This house wraps itself around a central deck and pool, offering privacy and protection from a neighbouring school and train line.
The second volume is made of zinc and glass and houses the master bedroom, retreat and study area at the upper level, with guest accommodation below. This lightweight and transparent element appears to float over the pool and provides a counterpoint to the monolithic form of the adjacent building volume.
Masterplanning for the staged redevelopment of a semi-rural property in Eltham. Our design proposal includes transformation of the existing home to accommodate a growing family incorporating children and guest areas. A new contemporary addition is proposed to create free flowing living spaces overlooking the surrounding rural landscape, with ideal northern orientation opening onto the outdoor entertaining area and pool. A new gynasium and studio building is proposed to be carved into the hillside to create a separate space for work and reflection away from the main house.
The addition of new building elements provides the family with contemporary bespoke living spaces that sit harmoniously within the rural landscape whilst the existing building is utilised and adapted to provide the necessary functional areas and accommodation.
This design concept for new council offices for the City of Stonnington was proposed as part of an invited design competition. Our proposal was designed in association with Sally Draper Architects and was shortlisted by Stonnington Council prior to their decision not to proceed with the project.
The architectural concept comprises of two key components; a solid linear spine and a three storey volume with terracotta screen accommodating flexible office floors. The solid spine accommodates discreet spaces such as enclosed meeting rooms, offices, amenities and service areas. The open offices floors sit behind a glass facade and terracotta louvre array designed to control light penetration and created screened views to and from the street.
Materials sympathetic to the historical context within which this building sits, are used in a contemporary way to create a strong and tangible relationship between old and new. Masonry in the form of stabilised rammed earth is used for its enduring quality and natural texture whilst terracotta blades are used to create a crisp, contemporary shading element to wrap the curved facade of the building where the building addresses the historical red brick church adjacent.
This interior office fit-out of a three storey warehouse building was designed for a small inner city marketing firm. Our design proposal includes the transformation of an existing stair into a striking circulation spine that connects the ground floor foyer to studio, office and meeting rooms. At ground floor level a small meeting room is enclosed in joinery that forms the backdrop to the main reception area. A former car garage with no natural light will be converted into a playful break out space for staff. Office and studio spaces on the upper floors are configured to allow for flexible arrangement of desks and work spaces. The main board room on the top floor will be opened up with a frameless glass wall to create a visual connecting to the creative studio.
The use of bold colors, fluid forms and the incorporation of ‘graphic wall’ opportunities create flowing spaces that are functional and provide a dynamic backdrop for Targetbase to present their work.
The Wedderburn Community Hub is located on the former site of the historic Wedderburn Primary School in rural Victoria. This masterplan and feasibility study gave us the opportunity to work with council and local residents to identify and explore key opportunities for the site. We worked in association with community consultation experts, LMH Consulting to understand and balance the needs of local community groups, council development parameters and potential funding constraints.
Our masterplan proposes a series of interlocking modules which can be constructed in multiple stages and tailored to achieve project budget as funding becomes available. Each module is designed to be a freestanding building with clear span roof structure to enable them to be flexible and easily adapted for future uses. Modules are connected by enclosed or open air walkways with controlled points of entry.
At completion the hub will incorporate the following facilities:
Neighbourhood House Administration
Multi-purpose Community Meeting Spaces
District Health Services
Job Network Services
Maternal Child Health Services
Tourist Information Centre
Art and Craft Facilities
The historical town hall at the gold rush town of Inglewood is an important example of regional architecture from the Victorian era. This masterplan and feasibility study provided us with the opportunity to work with Loddon Shire Council and local residents to identify their needs and explore key development opportunities for creating a community hub within this existing town hall building.
Our concept masterplan proposes a single storey extension of the building to the north to provide a main reception area for the community rooms and hall. A larger two storey addition is proposed to the south to accommodate new amenities and storage areas.
The concept for the new additions is to create elegant contemporary building forms that are reflective of the present and respectful of the past to enhance the architecture of this historical town hall.
Our work as Town Architect for the award winning Springthorpe residential estate allows our practice to help maintain and improve the quality of the built environment for almost 1000 homes at Springthorpe, in accordance with principles set out in design guidelines that were established during the development of its masterplan over a decade ago.
Although our core focus is on the interpretation, assessment and administration of the Springthopre design guidelines, we are committed to taking a community orientated approach to the implementation of the approvals process. Our work with the Springthorpe community is based on open and direct communication with residents and members of the Architectural Review Committee, to allow residents to discuss aspects of their applications and receive general advice on design where it is required.
Our electronic design approvals system enables efficient and comprehensive management of design applications to minimise processing time and provide complete records of all documentation for our client.
Our work at Springthorpe also includes the providing expert advice to to the Architectural Review Committee and Owners Corporation, drafting new and revised guidelines, consultation and negotiation during dispute resolution processes, and broader community education.
Masterplan drawing by Taylor Cullity Lethlean Landscape Architects
Our work as Town Architect for the Forest Resort Novotel golf resort and residential estate includes the development and publication of tailored design guidelines, and the interpretation, assessment and implementation of those guidelines. As town architect and member of the Architectural Review Committee, we assist the developer and Owners Corporation to maintain and improve the quality of the built environment now and into the future. Our community orientated approach is based on open communication with residents and members of the Architectural Review Committee during the application and approvals process.
Our electronic design approvals system enables efficient and comprehensive management of design applications to minimise processing time and provide complete records of all documentation for our client.