Located in Waikaraka, on the edge of the Whangarei Harbour, this is a contemporary home for a busy and close-knit family. Situated on a prime coastal site close to the city of Whangarei, an existing 1970s house was relocated to make way for this new family home.
The clients brief emphasised the need to maximize not only the coastal views on offer but the picturesque hills to the north east, while also screening the neighbours as much as possible for privacy. The house is tailored to the site conditions, orientation has been carefully considered to maximize both the sun to the north and the harbour view to the south west.
It was imperative that the house provide a protective exterior hub that could be occupied when sea breezes made the beach front intolerable, thus leading to an inner courtyard protected by 3 sides of the building but open to the north with a clear view through the formal living to the water.
This four-bedroom house has a central concrete spine, perpendicular to the beach which forms the backbone of the building, the internal spaces branch off to envelope the external courtyard containing a swimming pool, spa, and outdoor entertaining area.
The concrete spine is as visible as possible, intended as both a feature and a form of thermal mass. The concrete panels extend past the built house form, creating landscaping panels that bring the height of the overall structure back to ground level at a relatable scale.
The lower level contains both an informal and formal living space, the informal intended as a media / games room for the younger members of the family. The formal living at the opposite end is directly linked to the dining and kitchen with outdoor spaces either side. The two living spaces are connected via a long double height gallery beginning in the entry foyer following both the length of the swimming pool and the concrete spine.
The upper level is split into 2 sections joined by a glass bridge. The “girls” wing contains two generous sized bedrooms and a shared bathroom for the two daughters of the family. The main bedroom wing includes an ensuite, his and hers walk-in wardrobes, storage and a private deck overlooking the water. The upper level hallway overlooking the gallery is screened carefully from views of the neighbouring property through the use of strategically places louvres.
With a mixture of industrial materials, and careful selections of colour and form, this new addition to the landscape is intended as a bold statement. The aim was to create a dramatic and striking residence that would meet all the requirements of the modern family.