A quietly house in Melbourne's bay side suburbs showcases the multifaceted sensibility of its architect.
This new project by Greg Natale is actually a renovation and extension, but you wouldn't know it to look at it. The shell of the existing single-storey modernist house is now dissolved the clean lines of a new monolithic home set on a Brighton corner.
Greg Natale Design is a Sydney-based office of architects and interior designer, but its style is a good fit for a Melborne sensibility. In fact, this project's monochrome palette and quiet opulence would probably work in most urban environments. Grag has been trained as both an architect and interior designer, and has been able to hone a holistic vision for the project.
The owners of the Brighton House had a longstanding relationship with Greg through their business - Greg's practice has completed several national retail fitouts over the oast five yeras for their very successful cosmetic company. This connection meant that the clients and architect were confident with each other's styles.
The ambitious and hard-working couple desired a space of unassuming luxury to meet their carrer-orientated needs.
A single bedroom, bathroom and laundry were retained from the original 1950's house.
A key aspect of the client's brief was to reorientate the house and create a well- defined relationship with the street.
Now, a neatly crafted entry combining rendered and exposed brickwork with carefull stell detailing defines the street corner. The exterior volumes of the home are notated with deftly positioned windows and awnings, and Greg acknowledges the importance of glass in a project.
In fact, a large screen-like window creates an opportunity for a too-public transparency between the street and main bedroom. A playful trick?
The double-entry doors provide a sense of occasion and a wide hallway splits the ground floor and actively divides the anciallary sapces from the main living areas. A lime-washed American oak floor seamlessly ties the spaces together.
On one side a row of rooms includes the bathroom, study, a generous gym and bedrooms. On the other, a large open-plan living-dining-kitchen area feed into a long lap pool, cabana and outdoor kitchen, highlighting the owner's keen interest in relaation and entertaining.
The joinery relies on simple black-and-white motifs with samll decorative notes.
A black kitchen uses a horizontal detail to tie in with the exterior brickwork and small tweaks play with expectation - for example, the stainless steel detailed "X" in the kitchen bench reminds us that the kitchen remains a place for designer-ly experimentation.
Upstairs is adult only. The entire floor is designed for luxury and repose; a minimalist, clean pavilion incorporates louvred windows for cross-ventilation into the heady space.
The decorative touches touches are lighter than those seen in much of Greg's other work. Grass cloth wallpaper provides a warmth and texture to the bedroom. The basalt-clad ensuite is an homage, of sorts, to Melbourne's bluestone.