Pic­ture-per­fect ren­o­vat­ing

Build­ing or ren­o­vat­ing? Take in­spi­ra­tion from a house that adores its view

Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - November Contents -

in­spired by its lo­ca­tion op­po­site mag­nif­i­cent Lake Wen­douree, the ar­chi­tect’s chal­lenge was to de­sign a house where the out­doors could be en­joyed year round while pay­ing re­spect to the his­tory and beauty of the pic­turesque Vic­to­rian city of Bal­larat.


Once you lift your jaw off the ground at the amaz­ing front win­dow of this home, more sub­tle nods to the lo­cal area start to catch your eye: such a good rule of thumb when you’re build­ing. Th­ese in­clude the brick­work, specif­i­cally cho­sen to tie in with the her­itage build­ings in Bal­larat; the Bos­ton ivy planted be­neath it that will even­tu­ally cover the en­tire fa­cade in a spec­tac­u­lar liv­ing green wall, fit­ting in with the city’s many mag­nif­i­cent gar­dens; and the clever ma­nip­u­la­tion of the lev­els of the block that aids the home in ap­pear­ing to nes­tle within, rather than on top of the land­scape.

Ef­fec­tively, this fourbed­room home, de­signed by John War­dle Ar­chi­tects, is a series of pavil­ions built off an an­chor­ing spine with a floor plan that can be re­con­fig­ured de­pend­ing on how you de­sire to use the spa­ces. The pavil­ion

cur­rently cho­sen for din­ing is lined with ver­ti­cal and hor­i­zon­tal pan­els of spot­ted gum, soar­ing high into the ceil­ing void. The timber adds a lus­cious warmth and mood­i­ness, en­hanc­ing views to the court­yard and the raised gar­den beds out­side.

Up­stairs, to­wards the rear of the home, three ‘float­ing’ rooms jut out above the lower level, each hous­ing a bed­room and mim­ick­ing the boat­sheds you find on the lake op­po­site.

The pas­sion to cel­e­brate the his­tory of Bal­larat, the de­sire to make the most of an ac­tive out­door life­style and want­ing to ap­pre­ci­ate gor­geous gar­dens all year round have been achieved ef­fort­lessly in this mas­ter­piece.

Fea­tur­ing wide glass lou­vre walls is a ‘green­house’ – homage to ar­chi­tect Peter El­liott's con­ser­va­tory de­sign in the Bal­larat Botan­i­cal Gar­dens. It is filled with or­chids and be­go­nias typ­i­cally seen around Bal­larat.

Up­stairs, the par­ents’ re­treat/ li­brary is an ideal place for time out.

The sig­na­ture of this de­sign is the in­cred­i­ble win­dow. It wraps around the front fa­cade to frame the lake view op­po­site.

En­try to the mas­ter bed­room is de­fined by glass floor pan­els, fil­ter­ing light into the rooms be­low. Su­perb!

The kitchen’s 16m-long mar­ble bench­top ap­pears to float while link­ing rooms to­gether.

Spot­ted gum is a fea­ture of the doors and lines many in­te­rior walls, pro­vid­ing an earthy tran­si­tion to the var­i­ous out­door ‘gar­den rooms’.

Glass pan­els in the floor help to trans­fer light to the rooms be­low

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