The brief for Reef House was to create a holiday home for a mother, her three sons and their families. Designed by David Strachan of Strachan Group Architects, Reef House is a project with a unique and deep familial link. The owner of the house is David's cousin whilst the house itself was built by two of her sons, making the process and end result a true hands-on family experience.
A range of challenges including council regulations regarding neighbouring sight lines and topographical constraints influenced the overall design of Reef House and restricted the building site to just 200 square metres. Adhering to the regulations and constraints of the site, the plan is a split cruciform, providing axial views and cross ventilation. The dwelling's two levels follow the natural fall of the land and the roof is split into a twin-roof pavilion with two steeply pitched half gables, adding volume to the spaces located on the upper level.
The layout of the house is functional, catering to the family's needs and a range of coastal activities. The main living areas including the kitchen are housed on the upper level maximising the coastal views, whilst the bedrooms are located on the lower level. A kitchen designed to project outwards from the home's interior onto a screened outdoor living space combined with a series of verandahs, create a relationship between the indoor and outdoor spaces.
Selected for their longevity in coastal environments, materials such as powder coated aluminium cladding, oiled cedar and natural stone were utilised for the exterior. The interior palette features neutral tones paired with rich timber details, adding texture and warmth to the home.
A series of large glass windows allows an abundance of natural light to flow throughout Reef House, therefore the lighting was kept to a minimum. Downlights and a magnetic profile offering general and task lighting were recessed into the ceiling to create a refined and minimal appearance whilst adjustable spotlights were utilised to highlight artworks and sculptures featured within the home. A warm white colour temperature was selected for the interior luminaires, enhancing natural timber tones and creating a cosy and comfortable atmosphere.
Utilising a considered architectural structure, floorplan and material palette, Strachan Group Architects have created a unique and relaxed family holiday home connected to its seaside surroundings.