Photographer - Simon Wilson
Substanial contributors to the appeal of New Zealand’s bach towns are the soft boundaries and open living spaces that face out to the street front. Privacy takes a secondary priority to neighbourly social interaction. The approach to this holiday retreat, designed and built for the architect himself, is kept deliberately casual. Grass pavers dissolve the hard edges of the driveway and grass grows right up to the garage door. The street-facing entertaining area maintains the open and inviting feel of the place. The entry colonnade which brings the guest up onto the deck, and in under cover, engenders a hospitable and informal approach to the main living area.
"The holiday home is rethought with this stripped-back approach to contemporary bach comforts and conventions. An economy of programme and structure has provided a refreshing response that is more enticing than its more ambitious suburban neighbours. On approach, the street-side form is cut away to create a loggia that is both entry and living porch. This first shed form also accommodates utility space and simple bedrooms that share northern light through translucent gallery panels. A second shed form is devoted to double-height living space and a mezzanine retreat. The warmth of this social space is enhanced by the exposed timber floor structure and detailing."
- NZIA Waikato Bay of Plenty Jury
The interior’s sleek white walls and cabinetry allow the timber mezzanine to become the crafted centrepiece of the space. Sections of bowling alley which once supported the gliding feet of the Hamilton Skycity punters (including those of the architect himself) have now been re-purposed by his hands to become the dining table, stair treads and vanity tops.
This building represents a manifestation of the architect’s expression of his creative ambitions and experimentation and his desire to connect with his family and neighbourhood.