When architect and interior designer Alishia Minett Johnson was presented with a brief for a low maintenance home that could adapt to the number of inhabitants, she played with form. The client wanted the home to feel comfortable when they occupied the space just as a couple, yet be able to open up for visiting guests and still offer separate spaces to retreat to.

The design response was a series of living pavilions explained Alishia.

Each pavilion is articulated with its own form and roofline creating interest and moments of in-between as you journey from one pavilion to the next.

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

With no view, it was important an outlook was created for each of the pavilions to relate to. The relationship the pavilions has with the external spaces served as not only a visual aspect for the interiors but also an additional living space for the occupants. Private garden areas, a breezeway and an entertainer’s courtyard were designed in collaboration with the interior spaces and the architecture.

The outdoor Kitchen is further indulged with a traditional stone pizza oven which the owner labours over creating the most delicious feasts with flavours of the Mornington Peninsula complemented with local wines.

The pavilion’s external finishes combined Spotted Gum and timber painted in Shadowclad further helped connect the architecture with the landscape. Over time, the timber will grey off and nestle quietly into the site.

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

Internally, one of the home’s main features was to always be the living spaces as the client visualised this to be the “hub” of the home. This pavilion was highlighted with a barn-like aesthetic enriched with the texture of spotted gum scissor trusses and Baw Baw natural stone. The exposed cathedral pitched ceiling became a striking feature and the crisp white paintwork kept the space feeling contemporary, light and airy.

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt
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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

“The windows at each end of the gables allow sunlight to filter into the living and kitchen spaces with the added gift of beautifully framing an ancient gum tree above the kitchen Joinery”, said Alishia.

Purposefully steering clear of the “stark white” kitchen, Alishia opted for a neutral colour palette that would help soften the interior and emphasise a relaxed aesthetic that comes with designing a home in a coastal location. Complementing the Moleskin kitchen joinery, the driftwood colouring of the oak floorboards added warmth to the interior.

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

Central to the room stands a robust double-sided fireplace clad in Baw Baw Dry Stone designed to separate the living and dining areas of the large barn pavilion. “The Baw Baw stone provided texture, and a subtle dappling of colours and materiality to the space creating its own identity and solid mass within the pale environment,” explained Alishia.

“The Baw Baw stone united all the various tones and colours of the spotted gum, floorboards, joinery and white walls.” To add masculinity and a contrasting colour against the softness of the floorboards and interior palette, Bluestone tiles were used to finish the fireplace hearth.

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Flinders Pavilion House by Minett Studio | Image: Tatjana Plitt

For Alishia having a client that had faith in Minett Studio’s design vision was refreshing and proved essential for the success of the design. “As a result, we could comprehensively curate the project from all aspects including the selection of fittings, finishes and materiality.”

It’s this attention to detail, both internally and externally, that has resulted in a home that provides architectural interest and liveability.

For more on this project and others by Minett Studio, click here.