The design of the ‘Baker Boys Beach House’ is simple in nature, but complex in its capacity to address several key desires.
Designed as a holiday home for three separate families who share the house at different times, architects Refresh Design were tasked with a challenging brief. Their job was to cater for each family’s desires, while creating a contemporary home reflective of the island’s beach shack vernacular.
In analysing why each of the clients were drawn to Minjerribah, the connection to the land became apparent, inspiring a house reflective of the experience of camping.
‘It was obvious that the connection between nature and the shelter is more important than a more luxurious house, commonly found in cities,’ explains Monika Obrist, creative director of Refresh Design.
Similar to local campsites where cooking, gathering and sleeping occur under the one tent, the resulting house features all communal areas on the one compact level. This arrangement provides an experience more similar to a light shelter, rather than spending the day inside a house.
Achieving this floor plan was a challenge of the project due to the site’s very steep slope. To overcome this, the back of the house is anchored to the ground, while the other end of the structure is cantilevered to take full advantage of water views, and provide covered space underneath for car parking and storage.
‘The experience and connections are totally different depending where you are,’ says Monika. ‘The back of the house is sheltered and very private; it backs onto the nature reserve which naturally cradles the fireplace at the back. The front of the house, in contrast, has sweeping ocean views, presents itself very proudly to its surroundings, and gives access to sunlight throughout the day.’
Materials such as the charred timber cladding were chosen to enhance the home’s environment, while also addressing bushfire requirements. Perfectly matched is the roofing on the elegant butterfly roof – COLORBOND® steel in the colour Wallaby® in the TRIMDEK® profile by Lysaght.
The local Jandai word Moongalba, meaning ‘sitting down place’, beautifully describes the simplicity of spending time in this remarkable home.