Winner of the People's Choice Award for Residential Architecture 2015
A solid crystalline form, fused to the ground and reaching for the sun in a vast countryside landscape; the Szychowski residence.
Tilting, twisting, and emerging from the land, the residence rests between a cluster of trees and an infinite rolling landscape affording its owners commanding views beyond.
Inside its hard outer shell, is a flowing and visually textured warm interior that provides comfort and refuge from within for reflection on a seasonally vibrant landscape.
The public programme inside the residence is designed as one boundless space that cascades with the landscape. Negotiating from one spatial quality to the next, spaces are separated by level change and floating building elements that include a decorative masonry wall, a two way fireplace, stairs and balustrades that weave through a double height space.
Upon enter into residence, the connection to landscape and light is maintained through a sequence of windows along a curving northern facade, the experience being amplified by a sweeping two directional ceiling which connects public spaces to the external environment. During period s of rest, the owners can ascend to the top of the residence to command an infinite view or retreat to the western end of the residence and a space connected to the earth.
Collaboration between the architects, the structural engineer, the builder, and the steel fabricator ensured the design intent was maintained, to achieve an irregular crystalline external aesthetic while resolving internally to a level of vast sublime spaciousness..
This intent also resulted in construction efficiencies and value for money outcomes. Skilled trades were engaged in the detailed design of critical elements including the frameless façade, maintenance free external balustrades, internal steel stairs and balustrades, and the integration of ambient and installation lighting.
The residence includes solar passive design principles that include being oriented to maximise sun penetration during the winter months. Thermal mass slabs and masonry walls are carefully located internally while, double glazing end external shading is included for thermal comfort. Onsite water is sourced from a Southside 72k litre rain water tank, while sewerage is treated via an AWT septic system. Hot water is delivered using an energy efficient heat pump, and a solar power installation is connected back to the grid.
The Szychowski residence responded to the owners needs through an architectural expression that respects and compliments the vast landscape it is placed in. The owner’s intent was to create a luxurious retreat in a rural setting, drenched in natural light and stunning views. We have expressed this with an architecture unencumbered by a style or a fad. Instead the Szychowski residence, connects to the landscape and weathers with its surrounds
“We embarked on a four year journey to realise our dream home, a positive and rewarding experience. We are eternally grateful to our architect and builder “the dream team” who were able to transform our ideas into reality.
The construction of our home was based on numerous meetings to workshop endless design opportunities, solar passive design principles, and use of materials which needed to be durable to withstand the harsh climate and provide low maintenance.
Every moment inside and outside of our home feels very special as it incorporates all the modern and spacious features we wanted within an intuitive design. The architecture respects the rural landscape on which it is set and allows generous amounts of natural light into every room and provides amazing views of the property to observe the local flora and fauna." Owners
- Nabil Adhami: Design Architect
- Mariam Jomaa: Architectural Design
- Nicole Whitfield: Student of Architecture
- Jan Ruckschloss: Structural Engineer
- Santino di Carlo: Builder
- David Sipeki: Construction Manager
- Smartfix Facade & Roof
- Max Suthern Timber Floors
- Matirx Joinery
- Switched on Electrical Lighting & Power
- Ultimate Windows
- Herzog Steel Super Structure
- Mobile Fabrications Decorative Metal Fabrication
- BAVCO Decorative Concrete
- Laros Industries: Passive Solutions
- Donna Sulway: Photographer