Beach residence designed around natural landscape of shifting sands. St Andrews Residence on Victoria’s coastline seems almost to hover above natural sand dunes. The combined implications of persistent winds and sand movement were key in designing a residence which maintained the natural topography.
The timber-clad north facade unfolds to allow northern light to enter bedrooms, exposing rural views into the centre of the Mornington Peninsula ranges. To the south, a 30-metre long, simple, galvanised frame glass facade offers uninterrupted views of the ocean.
The internal planning is conventional with the upper level divided into two masses and separated by an internalised loggia for cross ventilation and direct connection to the smell and mist of the ocean.A summer house on the Mornington penninsular was planned as an extruded shack raised on plinths that would allow sand movement underneath.
At an exposed rugged site on the Mornington Penninsula, fronting a national park and Bass Strait, this bach house not only responds to the landscape but eventually will become part of it as the surrounding shifting snads and advancing ti-tree vegetation compose natural formations around and under the house. The connection and immediacy of nature is overwhelming
From the beach (facing south) the house appears to merge in with the dunes.
With the views came a problem - the dunes are constantly shifting, which made building the house here a difficult assignment.
This was enhanced by an entire elevation of galvanised steel-framed glass panels (30mtrs long) which reflect dramatic skies or tufted dunes - and a full length run of jarrah steps which over time have weathered to resemble the nearby silver coloured tea trees.
A gesture of disappearing into the landscape by blending into the textures of nature. The central loggia opens onto the beach - it was designed to create a direct connection to the smell and mist of the ocean. During storms it is a very intense experience.