Single Residence - Aintree Road, Melbourne
Design Architect - Lanigan Architects
Detail & Documentation - Atlas Architects (Melbourne)
Photography - Peter Bennetts
Competed in 2018
About the Residence
This contemporary home is located in the leafy south-eastern suburb of Glen Iris, Melbourne. Nestled within a streetscape of early century bungalows, the home comfortably takes the place of the previous weatherboard cottage, wrapping the slender new building form is the warmth of stained Silver Ash timber cladding. The stained is a rich, dark chocolate colour which visually grounds the house into the lush green landscaped gardens.
Rising above the ground floor entry is a lantern-like glazed void that glows above the solid base, offering a floating upper roof form set back from the street and signalling the generous volumes within. Glimpses of Francesc Vilaro designer pendant lights are visible on approach from the street and in twilight the warm glow of light spilling into the front garden and entry pathway draws visitors to a concealed doorway at the side of the house. On entering, the sunlit double volume entry presents an interesting arrangement of openings and stairs to move towards whilst revealing none completely. A stair that rises and turns out of sight, a passageway to another room, an opening to elsewhere; the house is discovered in parts. The front of the house is separated from the main living zone. The tranquil sitting room is pushed forward into the front courtyard garden – trees strategically planted so as to be framed in window openings bring the landscape within. Ground floor semi-independent living quarters have been designed into the plans to accommodate parents and visitors from afar without interrupting the everyday life of the busy young family who reside there. Multi-generational living being part of the client’s ‘future-proofing’ of the design brief. Upstairs is another zone – this one for the kids.
Huge bedrooms and a generous living area perch over the rear outdoor living areas and capture views over the rear laneway to a public green space opposite. Returning to the entry, we find the heart of the house through the last portal. A subtle few steps down past a home office offering oversight throughout an external alfresco and pool area and located as a pivot between entry and main living zone, we find an open plan living area that flows seamlessly through a wall of glass to a pool deck and alfresco area shrouded in greenery. The huge kitchen bookends the space around dining and sitting spaces, concealing a walk-in scullery subtlety placed behind a dividing wall. Timber flooring – limed washed oak – flows throughout and finds harmony with the warm selection of timber furniture. The rich timber exterior also complimented in the selected cabinetwork finishes and furnishings.
The orientation of the house perfectly suited to capture the northern sun and push it deep within the rooms on a winter’s day while bathing the pool deck in sunlight through the warmer months. Considered Passive-Solar design combined with a highly insulated building envelope, including double glazed windows and solar panels, keeps this home’s energy consumption extremely low. Environmentally sustainable design was another key factor in the client brief and one that was maintained throughout the course of the detail design and construction.
The master wing sits half a level above the main living space, adjacent a raised deck overlooking both pool and green space. The luxurious bedroom and master ensuite completing the main level floor plan. Constructed over three levels, the lot also enjoys rear laneway access to accommodate a three vehicle garage below hidden from the main street.
Read the owner's review of the design and process.