SINGLE RESIDENTIAL AWARD (joint)
DesignInc Perth for 20 Hutchison Ave, Minim Cove, Mosman Park.
DesignInc's Peter Christou says he has designed hundreds of multiple residences – mainly specialising in commercial and industrial design – but admits single residential design is not something he is enticed to do very often.
In fact, Mr Christou has only ever designed five single residences in his architectural career, two of them award winning.
His winning entry at Minim Cove in this year’s WA Royal Institute of Architects awards the second of those two.
“We were approached for the brief on the strength of a small photo in a magazine of the corner of another house I designed, and the client approached us solely on the strength of that,” Mr Christou said.
“I asked what sort of ideas she was interested in, and they were the same ideas I was interested in, so there was a great synergy straight away.
“Within a day of getting the brief I had a concept – it was one of the quickest and easiest designs that I have done.
“The client gave me free reign to do what I wanted to do, which happened to be the same thing that she wanted, so it worked perfectly.
“The house really pays homage to the site and setting – it is a magical block and the water theme is carried throughout the house.
“It is not only the views that carry this theme, but also the created water features that we have put in and around the house.
“Entry to the house is via stepping stones over a water moat, and as you cross that, you know that you are entering something different.”
Mr Christou said the house had two different facades, appearing romantic from the front and dynamic from the riverside.
Awards judges said the house was a theatrical and dynamic experience that began with the opening of the front gate and continued throughout the entire house.
“It is refreshing to see large-scale single residential design embrace an ‘ideas-based architecture’ and implement this ‘idea’ with clarity and consistency,” they said.
The house is located on the northern banks of the Swan River in the prestigious Minim Cove precinct of Mosman Park, which takes in vistas of Fremantle.