Athree-bedroom cottage perched high on a hill in Auchenflower, in Brisbane’s inner west, was the starting point for a family renovation project. Architect Julie Borgelt, of Borgelt and Craig, helped the parents adapt the home for their empty-nester needs, while retaining its original street-front charm. “The owners had lived in a big house on acreage in [outer-west] Brookfield for years,” says Borgelt, who had designed two previous houses for them, “but they wanted to experience the convenience of being closer to the city, and to the university for their two children.”
Her brief was to create a selfcontained space for the come-andgo offspring, or for guests, as well as provide more living space for the parents. At the rear of the house, the land plunges away steeply and a city view is clear on one side. Borgelt kept the original cottage intact and adapted it as a parents’ retreat, refitting two bathrooms, establishing a cosy sitting room and open-air office. An old lean-to kitchen was demolished at the rear, and a long new wing projects 25m into space. The leafy canopy of a large, mature poinciana tree is the focal point for the spacious living room and kitchen. Doors fold away to the verandah, making the room itself feel like one big verandah.
One level down, two ensuite bedrooms open onto a secondary living area and kitchen. Wide boards of Australian beech grace the floor, and hoop pine is used in the extensive joinery. A spectacular chunk of black “silver wave” marble from China is the centrepiece kitchen bench, and timber balustrading wraps the staircase between the levels.
this page … ( above) the UPSTAIRS KITCHEN FEATURES A CHINESE “SILVER WAVE” MARBLE BENCHTOP, WHILE EXPOSED BRICKS PROVIDE CONTRAST IN A BATHROOM.
opposite page … TWO SELF-CONTAINED LEVELS MAKE UP THIS INNER-WEST RENOVATION.