The story behind the design
An easement planning restriction is often perceived as a constraint, dictating the site layout and architectural form. The design of Cove House attempted to prove the opposite; to challenge the benign response to the water-access easement typical of the Sanctuary Cove area by embracing the home’s boundaries and external context.Justin Humphrey Architect viewed the easement spanning the property’s eastern perimeter as an opportunity to make a visual statement and foster a connection with the broader community.
“We chose to express and celebrate this edge through a grand tactile gesture that beckons engagement and communicates the materiality of the house to passing neighbours”
Cove House celebrates the northern water aspect and remains true to the brief for a materially-rich space inspired by sub-tropical architecture. The entry to the home is gentle, however, the attention to detail and the layering of tactile natural materials evokes a promising experience beyond the front façade.
Take a closer look
“A fine battened timber screen suggests enclosure, while the open sky, water view and immediate immersion in tropical landscaping provoke engagement and connection”, says Justin of the home’s entrance.
The subtle concave profile of the timber battens, the gentle sweep of a concrete wall or the curved joinery found in the master ensuite all soften and add elegance to the project.
The home’s tactile nature comprising of board-form concrete, natural stone and timber with black highlights embodies a sense of masculinity. This is offset by a restrained dialogue of curves which Justin explains provides visual relief and encourages movement through the internal spaces.“The subtle concave profile of the timber battens, the gentle sweep of a concrete wall or the curved joinery found in the master ensuite all soften and add elegance to the project.” The resolved balance between the raw and masculine, and the familiar and approachable is a common thread in the design and is what makes the spaces all the more inviting.
Through artfully placed incisions in the structure, natural light floods deep into the internal spaces that open to reveal a framed view of the waterfront. The interior living room seamlessly unfolds onto an outdoor area that is ripe for entertaining and obscures the lines between indoor and out.To create cohesion between the public and private areas, robust concrete and warming timbers are used, while the natural stone flooring visually defines the communal and exposed outdoor spaces. It is in this exposed living space where the spatial interplay and connection with the site is firmly established.
Cove House was designed to challenge the norm and respond to a brief where the boundaries between the inside and out, the private and public would be tested. It’s also a home that’s designed to be adaptable; accommodating the intimate patterns of daily life combined with the ability to host large social gatherings with ease.Justin Humphery Architect have created a home that achieves complete harmony between the architecture and the external setting. A building that is not only enjoyed by the clients but also the neighbours passing by.