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SMITHS LAKE HOUSE

The brief for this project was to create a coastal sanctuary for escapes from city life on a site that was set high on a hill amongst the native landscape and wildlife.

In response to this amazing location, the concept for this holiday house was to create a series of living spaces as pavilions in the trees which were connected by an outdoor entertaining area.  Leaving your car at the bottom of the site, the journey from the street to the house immersed you within the landscape and upon arrival at the summit the house acts as both sanctuary and observatory with views across Smiths Lake to the ocean beyond.

The service spaces of the home were set close to ground level both for ease of use and to provide the most expansive views to the living areas above.  The bedroom and amenities were contained within one pavilion which turns away from the main living pavilion to provide a more calm and private experience.  The larger pavilion housed the main kitchen, living and entertaining areas which extended out into the tree canopy through a large deck accessed off the main living area.

The structure of the house could be seen from inside and out, speaking to the structure of the native bushland surrounds, and the use of corrugated metal and lightweight cladding provided a sense of lightness and brightness within the canopy.  Carefully arranged roof forms, stacking doors and glass louvre windows allowed the pavilions to breathe and ventilate thanks to the prevailing coastal breezes.