Build was love at fi rst site

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - HOME - Jar­rad Bevan

WHEN de­sign­ing his con­tem­po­rary fam­ily home at Kingston Beach, ar­chi­tect Tim Penny’s cre­ation was in­formed by the steep site while also draw­ing in­spi­ra­tion from the tra­di­tional ar­chi­tec­ture found in the area in the early 20th cen­tury.

He has lived on the hill­side plot of land since the ’ 70s, at fi rst in the mod­est white weath­er­board house at the front of the long prop­erty.

Five years ago, the Pen­nys built at the top of the block.

One of the ad­van­tages of the site is its un­de­vel­oped feel, its bush set­ting makes you for­got you are in the mid­dle of sea­side sub­ur­bia.

The home is a steel struc­ture built around a tex­tu­ral, off- form con­crete in­te­rior.

A cen­tral set of stairs is the heart of the home from which its rooms have been built around.

At the front of the prop­erty is an ex­cit­ing can­tilevered liv­ing room. It fea­tures big win­dows, a fl oor- to- ceil­ing book­shelf, baby grand piano, and spa­ces to curl up in com­fort.

My wife So­nia would prob­a­bly pick the lounge room as her favourite space or the mas­ter bed­room re­treat where she can es­cape the bus­tle of the house and en­joy the soli­tude and quiet

But as the house climbs the slope to the up­stairs bed­rooms and bath­room, it tran­si­tions into a sin­gle scale, al­most pe­tite struc­ture that, from the back door, re­veals noth­ing that lies below.

From the en­try you can turn right into the kitchen with its mir­rored splash­back and stain­less steel workspaces, or left into a Vic­to­rian dress­ing- room style study high­lighted by a the­atri­cal splash of high- end wall­pa­per.

The dining room steps through to an out­door en­ter­tain­ing space high­lighted by a 12m lap pool that takes in un­in­ter­rupted views.

For Tim, this is his favourite part of the house.

“I am a swim­mer and in summer I love to

duck down to the beach for a lap, but there is noth­ing like a swim in your own pool,’’ he said.

“My wife So­nia would prob­a­bly pick the lounge room as her favourite space or the mas­ter bed­room re­treat where she can es­cape the bus­tle of the house and en­joy the soli­tude and quiet.’’

From the deck look­ing back to­ward the house there is a sense of per­ma­nence; it is an­chored by the black ce­ment and the black ver­ti­cal boards that echo the beach shack style typ­i­cal of Kingston Beach’s past.

How­ever, it is the lit­tle de­tails that make a house a home. Tim be­lieves ev­ery house should have a plaque and his sits in the en­trance way, with a nod to the “leg­endary’’ builder Stu­art Han­cock who han­dled the home’s con­struc­tion.

Tim said if he was de­sign­ing his house to­day there is only one thing he would want to re­con­sider. The liv­ing room was po­si­tioned to take in a 45 de­gree view of Browns River. And there is a large fl oor- to- ceil­ing win­dow that in­hales the views and “talks to the moun­tain’’.

But to en­sure the house in front of theirs was hid­den from view, the height of the room’s largest win­dow be­gins at about waist level.

It wasn’t the wrong de­ci­sion but Tim said many ar­chi­tects don’t ever stop con­sid­er­ing their com­po­si­tional de­ci­sions. “I am al­ways tin­ker­ing,’’ he said. “I do won­der if, per­haps, with a dif­fer­ent win­dow the lounge room space may have felt more dra­matic.’’

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