When the owners of this unique home briefed Mark Brown, Solutions Architecture Ltd, they came with some very specific requirements on the function of their  new home but beyond this the brief allowed for a high degree of input in design and material choices. The overall concept was to create a contemporary family home that would stand the test of time and still look good, without dating, in 20 years. This is a family orientated home designed to accommodate the needs of two growing sons, to provide guest accommodation, a study and privacy for parents, children and guests.

Project description

The 600 m.sq. site created some challenges as the footprint of the home could not be within 6 metres of either the front or rear boundary due to Residential heritage site restrictions. To further complicate the project the site had a 4 metre fall from North East to South West.. The challenge was to provide high quality living spaces, which were not 2 or 3 metres below the surrounding ground level, and where possible give direct access at ground level to living areas. At the outset it became apparent that to achieve the objectives, required in the brief, the home would be multi- level but rather than create a two story home Mark’s solution was to step the various spaces on the slope. This achieved the separation and privacy required for the guest accommodation, the master bedroom, the lounge and communal living areas and the boy’s bedrooms. The levels are divided with the guest accommodation, garaging and entrance gallery at the base. The stairs rise 1300 mm to the second level landing servicing the master bedroom and study. A further 1300 mm above the landing services
the boys bedrooms, their shared bathroom, a guest powder room/toilet and the main living/dining and kitchen areas.

Design features

The exterior of the home utilises a variety of claddings and materials which are both practical and provide texture and form to the home. The entry is bounded by the strong linear forms of stack20 series blocks which provide the structural support for the upper levels which combine the textures of Rockcote EPS 40 Plus and horizontal lines of Pine bevelled Back Weatherboards. The roof is in COLORSTEEL® Maxx® Custom Orb. The exterior joinery is in double glazed Fletcher Residential series which, together with the claddings, provides excellent insulation and energy savings. Heat pumps within the home circulate air throughout providing ventilation during the summer and warmth in winter. Louvres in living areas control the temperature during hot summer months by expelling hot air from the skillion ceiling. The combine effects of double glazing, claddings, insulation, heat pumps and ventilation all contribute to the sustainability and comfort of the home. With well-placed rooms, oriented north, complimenting the sustainable features the owners have found little need to use additional heating.

A striking features of the interior is the polished kwila timber floors throughout the entry, dining, kitchen and lounge areas which gives a warm, visual elegance to the home. The open plan kitchen, dinning and lounge areas are expansive and the collective spaces provide the family with opportunity to entertain or interact. The centralised kitchen, whilst deceptively simple in design, features every possible modern convenience with state of the art appliances and fittings.The Unique bathroom layouts with ‘hidden areas’ create something special and privacy...particularly when a bathroom is shared between boys. The master bedroom and guest bedrooms both have an ensuite and all bathrooms (four in total) feature exceptionally high end fittings and fixtures.

The lounge opens to the courtyard/deck via Fletcher bi-fold doors giving uninterrupted access of 5.4 metres.

This private courtyard/deck is at ground level and provides a sunny morning spot, with shade later in the day. It also creates an area for alfresco dining with easy accessibility to the kitchen. The master bedroom is a quiet oasis with pleasant outlooks to the east and courtyard. On level one, the guest room is conveniently situated close to the entry, tucked away from the rest of the home to provide guests with self contained privacy and a place to retreat. The boy’s rooms, which are of a generous size, are on the same level as the living areas which enables easy access and supervision during day and in the evening.

Overall this has proven to be a highly successful project for Solutions Architecture Limited. The project was built by Ashley Sims Ltd. and the high standard of workmanship coupled with the materials illustrates the results that can be achieved when all disciplines involved work together towards the same goal. Excellence.

Solutions Architecture Ltd.

Solutions Architecture Ltd pride themselves on imaginative architectural design that is unique to the site characteristics and the lifestyle or working environment of their clients.

The principal, Mark Brown has been in the design field for 25 years, with a rebranding and launch of Solutions Architecture in 2006. Involvement with ADNZ (Architectural Designers of NZ Inc) at both branch and national level has given Mark the tools to respond in a professional manner to clients needs. The senior staff of Solutions Architecture each has over 20 years experience and the company is committed to continued professional development on Industry standards, trends and regular seminar attendance. “We consider staying abreast with the latest developments, products, trends and good practice is vital to the success of our practice. Our clients expect nothing less,” says Mark Brown.

The practice has been commissioned on a wide variety of National and international projects but consider they have a special affinity for unique residential design with special attention to the client’s individual needs and the relationship of the building to the site. To this end Solutions Architecture offer their clients a wide range of design skills and complimentary expertise ranging from subdivision to interior decorating.

“We consider our success can be attributed to our innovative approach to projects from the smallest alteration to multi million dollar homes and commercial projects. The attention to detail, costing, observation and documentation is of the highest standard ensuring our projects run smoothly”, says Mark.” This is vital to our business and our clients.”

Architectural Designer:
Mark Brown
Solutions Architecture,
Telephone: (09) 576 7472,
Mobile: 0274 480317

Main Contractor:
Ashley Sim Ltd.
Telephone: 021 920 570

Roofing Manufacturer:
Steel & Tube roofing Products
Telephone: 09-274 4056
Profile: COLORSTEEL® Maxx®

Custom Orb
Glazing/exterior joinery:
Fletcher Residential
Bathrooms: Graham Walton
Telephone: 021 166 5194
Photography: Elise Jennings