This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

A Home Among The Gumtrees, Where Nature Is Everything

Architecture

When it comes to architectural beach and country properties, often the home itself appears as a real ‘statement’ within its environment. For the house at Killora Bay by Lara Maeseele in association with Tanner Architects, the opposite is true.

For this home, the magnificent beauty of the surrounding Tasmanian White Gums and Grass Trees are the main event, and the house built within their dense canopy simply facilitates a symbiotic relationship with the landscape.

2nd July, 2021

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Photo – Adam Gibson.

Sally Tabart
Friday 2nd July 2021

‘We really wanted the landscape to speak, not the architecture.’ – Lara Maeseele. 

Designed by Lara Maeseele in association with Tanner Architects, this picturesque home is positioned on a slope above Killora Bay in the North of Bruny Island, overlooking the D’Entrecasteaux Channel.

Before they built it, Lara and her family spent years camping in a makeshift shed made of recycled fence palings to get to know the site. ‘We used this time to become familiar with the site characteristics – the trees and shading, sunlight and views’, Lara says. In fact, the overall vision for the finished home links back to the experience of camping with friends – a place that could facilitate multiple families at once, and provide shelter while exploring the great outdoors.

When they bought the block of land there was an existing 18-metre diameter circular clearing, which determined the building envelope of the project. The site is a sanctuary for one of Australia’s rarest birds, the Forty Spotted Pardalote, and is protected by an environmental living classification. ‘We really wanted the landscape to speak, not the architecture’, says Lara. As such, a modest residence of 131m2 was conceived. A generous foyer splits the home into two zones, with the open plan living space, kitchen, main bedroom and bathroom on one side, and the kids room, playroom and bathroom on the other. ‘Nothing is pure aesthetics’ says Lara. ‘…every inch has been thought through, every building element has been made to work hard, often having multiple functions.’

The exterior has been clad in locally sourced Silver-Top Ash, which is a bushfire resistant material.

For Lara and her family, the finished home fulfills a dream of allowing the ever changing rhythms of the natural environment inform daily life ‘…you watch the animals play, you wake up with the sun and follow the shadow play of the tree canopies on the walls. You fall asleep watching the stars above you. This landscape, the trees around us, the birds, it’s so precious – to be able to enjoy it like we do is a real privilege’.

This Week

Family

Artist Miranda Skoczek On Single Parenting, Smelling The Roses + Spontaneity

Artist Miranda Skoczek shares her multigenerational family life in the Dandenongs with son Harper and aunt Margaret.

Shopping

The Ultimate Outdoor Furniture Guide

From sleek and chic to fun and playful, here are four different schemes for the outdoor dining situation of your dreams!

Food

Julia's Herby Prawn Mayo Sandwiches

Julia Busuttil Nishimura serves up the ultimate summer sanga. YUM!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Words From The Wise

Pushing Against The Status Quo As A Creative Professional, With Designer Timothy Moore

Sibling Architecture director and co-founder Timothy Moore shares refreshing advice about embarking on a career in architecture and design -...
Haroula Karapanagiotidis

News

Melbourne's Futuristic New Gallery For Art + Science

Excitement is high – the latest museum in the international Science Gallery Network opens in Melbourne today!
Sponsored

On The Market

The Perfect Mid-Century, NSW South Coast Beach House Is For Sale

This mid-century Mollymook Beach house is perfect in its proportions, feel and water views... and it's on the market!

Studio Visit

The Graduate Designer Pushing The Limits Of Traditional Furniture Design

Brigitte Owers-Buccianti is the designer behind Real Non-Real, an exciting new practice making multi-functional furniture pieces.

News

WIN A One-Of-A-Kind Artwork By Local Artist Dave Kulesza - aka Boris Bombay!

Bombay Sapphire are giving away a nostalgia-fuelled, pop art-esque tiled artwork by Boris Bombay (aka Dave Kulesza) to one lucky winner!
Sponsored

Creative People

Seven Standout Emerging Creatives of 2021

Discovering talented new creatives is our favourite thing we do – here are the artists, designers and makers who got us talking in 2021.

Creative People

Creating Original, Ever-Changing Gardens With Kep Horticulture’s Andy Kepitis

Kep Horticulture founder Andy Kepitis talks how to create dynamic gardens, and his aversion to 'certain' plant palettes!

Homes

The Experimental Melbourne Home Of Two Artists

The 'warped maximalist colour feast' home of artists Nabilah Nordin and Nick Modrzewski in Newport, Melbourne.

News

Save Soho Rose Farm!

Donate to help save Victoria’s most beautiful field-grown roses, after a devastating hail storm. 

Food

The Tastiest Recipes Of 2021

From savoury galettes to triple tiered vanilla sponges with craem and lemon curd, these are our five most popular recipes of last year.

Gardens

Heide Museum’s Enchanting New Healing Garden

Heide Museum of Modern Art opens a new healing garden – a therapeutic space to benefit the mind, soul, and body.

Homes

Designer Anna Spiro’s Heavenly Island Home

The celebrated interior designer shares her relaxed yet luxurious Minjerribah/North Stradbroke holiday house.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Multigenerational Family Retreat In A Blue Mountains Valley

It looks like a Swiss Chalet, but 'Stonelea' is a uniquely Australian home in the Blue Mountains, by Matthew Woodward Architecture.

Tiny Homes

A Farmer’s Tiny Copper-Clad Getaway!

Permanent Camping Two by Casey Brown Architecture is a countryside retreat with everything you need, and nothing you don’t!

Architecture

A Refined Country Home That Celebrates The Seasons

A simple floor plan, tactile materials, and generous garden capture the changing seasons in Kyneton House by Edition Office.

This Week

On The Market

The Perfect Mid-Century, NSW South Coast Beach House Is For Sale

This mid-century Mollymook Beach house is perfect in its proportions, feel and water views... and it's on the market!

Words From The Wise

Pushing Against The Status Quo As A Creative Professional, With Designer Timothy Moore

Sibling Architecture director and co-founder Timothy Moore shares refreshing advice about embarking on a career in architecture and design -...
Haroula Karapanagiotidis

Homes

Designer Anna Spiro’s Heavenly Island Home

The celebrated interior designer shares her relaxed yet luxurious Minjerribah/North Stradbroke holiday house.

Food

Julia's Herby Prawn Mayo Sandwiches

Julia Busuttil Nishimura serves up the ultimate summer sanga. YUM!
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

News

WIN A One-Of-A-Kind Artwork By Local Artist Dave Kulesza - aka Boris Bombay!

Bombay Sapphire are giving away a nostalgia-fuelled, pop art-esque tiled artwork by Boris Bombay (aka Dave Kulesza) to one lucky winner!
Sponsored

News

Melbourne's Futuristic New Gallery For Art + Science

Excitement is high – the latest museum in the international Science Gallery Network opens in Melbourne today!
Sponsored

Food

The Tastiest Recipes Of 2021

From savoury galettes to triple tiered vanilla sponges with craem and lemon curd, these are our five most popular recipes of last year.

Creative People

Seven Standout Emerging Creatives of 2021

Discovering talented new creatives is our favourite thing we do – here are the artists, designers and makers who got us talking in 2021.

News

Save Soho Rose Farm!

Donate to help save Victoria’s most beautiful field-grown roses, after a devastating hail storm. 

Gardens

Heide Museum’s Enchanting New Healing Garden

Heide Museum of Modern Art opens a new healing garden – a therapeutic space to benefit the mind, soul, and body.

Studio Visit

The Graduate Designer Pushing The Limits Of Traditional Furniture Design

Brigitte Owers-Buccianti is the designer behind Real Non-Real, an exciting new practice making multi-functional furniture pieces.

Creative People

Creating Original, Ever-Changing Gardens With Kep Horticulture’s Andy Kepitis

Kep Horticulture founder Andy Kepitis talks how to create dynamic gardens, and his aversion to 'certain' plant palettes!

Homes

The Experimental Melbourne Home Of Two Artists

The 'warped maximalist colour feast' home of artists Nabilah Nordin and Nick Modrzewski in Newport, Melbourne.

Shopping

The Ultimate Outdoor Furniture Guide

From sleek and chic to fun and playful, here are four different schemes for the outdoor dining situation of your dreams!

Family

Artist Miranda Skoczek On Single Parenting, Smelling The Roses + Spontaneity

Artist Miranda Skoczek shares her multigenerational family life in the Dandenongs with son Harper and aunt Margaret.

Similar Stories

Architecture

A Multigenerational Family Retreat In A Blue Mountains Valley

It looks like a Swiss Chalet, but 'Stonelea' is a uniquely Australian home by Matthew Woodward Architecture.

Tiny Homes

A Farmer’s Tiny Copper-Clad Getaway!

Permanent Camping Two by Casey Brown Architecture is a unique countryside retreat.

Architecture

A Refined Country Home That Celebrates The Seasons

A simple floor plan, tactile materials, and generous garden capture the changing seasons in Kyneton House by Edition Office.

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 – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.