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A Mint Condition Mid-Century Mansion Goes Under The Hammer

Mid-Century Modern

We’ve had our fair share of incredible homes hit the market in the last couple of weeks (the unparalleled Fender House anyone?!), but this house is really something special! Built in 1964 as the private residence for architect Ernest Fooks, this three-bedroom dwelling in Melbourne’s Caulfield North is an exemplar of Australia’s late modernist design period.

This one’s for you mid-century enthusiasts! Something this good doesn’t come around often.

3rd November, 2020

32 Howitt Road, Caulfield North was designed by architect Ernest Fooks in 1964 as his own private home. Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

The house is a combination of closed rooms and open-plan layout. Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

It even contains a picture gallery! Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

Standout finishes include a terracotta-tiled entry hall, white terrazzo marble flooring and herringbone parquetry. Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

This reduced interior material palette is complemented by brick-faced walls and a slate-shingled roof. Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

Aside from the pool, the garden contains nearly all of its original plantings! Photo – Courtesy of Gary Peer.

Sasha Gattermayr
Tuesday 3rd November 2020

Designed by renowned modernist architect Ernest Fooks as the private home for himself and his wife, Noemie, this spectacular residence in Melbourne’s Caulfield North was built in 1964, and remains in near-perfect original condition.

Comprising of a single storey, the three-bedroom structure is brick-clad inside and out and complemented by a slate-shingled roof. It retains most of its original fixtures and finishes, including in-built polished teak joinery throughout. Besides the timber ceiling battens, the most notable of these textured surfaces are the floors, which move from a terracotta-tiled entry foyer to  herringbone parquetry in the library, and original terrazzo tiles through the rest of the residence.

Sitting on a staggering 1,092 square metre block, enclosed courtyards dotted throughout the layout create consistent connection with the outdoors, not to mention a strong Japanese influence. The garden even retains its original plantings!

Appearing simple at first glance and eminently complex on closer inspection – this slice of Australian architectural history won’t be around for long! We have all our fingers and toes crossed that it falls into the right hands.

32 Howitt Road, Caulfield North will be sold through private sale by Gary Peer. See the listing here.

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The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net