This was a gut renovation of a dilapidated craftsman-style house, saving its eccentric form and shape, while replacing its dark, gloomy interior with a light-filled contemporary space. The house reflects the quirky personalities of the Australian clients, utilizing indigenous materials and colors such as Jarrah wood and blue-gum eucalyptus to create a very personal, meaningful design.
A new, glassed-in entry pavilion set in the front garden welcomes visitors and leads directly to a new four-story steel and glass staircase. Topped by a large operable skylight, the glass treads and white structure are a sculptural presence in this otherwise simple interior. Up a half-level is the main family space with formal living and adjacent polygonal music room (perfect acoustics) opening to a southern-facing deck. A three-story addition at the rear allows for a great room with open kitchen, an expanded master bedroom suite at the second story, and culminates in a third-floor view room/study with spectacular downtown views. In the basement is a “loud” room for drumming and impromptu jam sessions, wine cellar and access to the original two-car garage.
Sustainability was important to the client, and along with the standard green features such as solar, and radiant heating, the clients installed a rain catchment (being from Australia) system with 1,500 Gallon tanks in the basement for irrigation and gray water usage. Ultimately the greenest feature of the house was to design it to be “right sized”, where the house was expanded only where necessary, and every room has a purpose.