The Hamilton Courtyard project by Anthrosite was originally meant salvage two 1930s cottages and unite them together with one cohesive design. But the eastern structure could not be saved, and thus the design had to be reconfigured to include just one of the existing buildings.
‘Instead of being pressured into market norms of maximising floor space, the clients were more concerned with creating a series of family spaces that felt connected to each other,’ says director, Mark Spencer. ‘The result is a celebration of the courtyard, a generous central area that unites the wings of the house and promotes visibility, allowing the occupants to remain connected to each other even while engaged in individual tasks.’
A brick passage running between the two cottage sites acts as the formal entry to the residence, opening to a central courtyard (landscaped by the clients themselves!) which serves as the main node of the house. Wings surround this green space on all sides: to the west lies the bedrooms, to the south an open plan living-dining-kitchen area, and the east holds the ancillary zones such as a laundry, pantry and music room.
An in-built desk runs the length of the eastern courtyard window, creating a study corridor that looks onto the greenery beyond.
The intact western cottage holds more bedrooms and a courtyard-facing library, while the body of the eastern cottage is now a garage. Beyond the dining pavilion (which opens on both sides thanks to sliding glass doors) lies a backyard comprising rolling green lawn, a pool and a pool-house.
Floorboards from the eastern cottage were salvaged and repurposed as furniture and light fittings, specifically the 4.2 metre long dining table and the pendant light that hangs above it. Additionally, French doors and stained glass windows were also re-used from the demolished residence.
Finally, the eastern cottage was replaced with a timber battened garage that retains the same silhouette as the original structure. From the street-view, the twin silhouettes read like a form and its shadow, as well as a respectful gesture to the building that used to stand before it.
The result is a glorious expression of old-meets-new design!
The Hamilton Courtyard by Anthrosite was shortlisted in the Residential Architecture Category of The Design Files + Laminex Design Awards 2021.
See more projects from Anthrosite here.