A Cottesloe Family Home That Revolves Around The Sun

The clients of this home loved a previous project by Sydney based architects Clayton Orszaczky so much, they engaged the same design team to remotely create their new house, from the other side of the country!

The resulting home in Cottesloe, WA, draws on the same details and principles as Clayton Orszaczky’s Bondi project, while being unique to the requirements of its Western Australia site and environment.

Spaces are bathed in light from almost all directions, revealing soft materiality and detail.

Amelia Barnes

Gabled House is robust home that revolves around natural light and garden views. Photo – Jack Lovel

The driving principle of the design was the focus on the management of light. Photo – Jack Lovel

The owners loved a previous house by the same architects, so they requested they take inspiration from this house with their own needs in mind. Photo – Jack Lovel

The six metre long brick island bench is the centre of the home. Photo – Jack Lovel

The dining room and kids lounge are surrounded by garden spaces on three sides. Photo – Jack Lovel

A strong masonry element runs the entire length of the house to separate rooms and reflect natural light. Painting by Emma Gale. Tapestry by Tammy Kanat. Photo – Jack Lovel

The delight of this home is the spaces bathed in light from almost all directions. Photo – Jack Lovel

 Materials were selected to respond to the local microclimate of a beachside home, as well as the needs of a young family. Photo – Jack Lovel

Painting by Marlene Gilson. The kids living area opens to the backyard. Photo – Jack Lovel

Photo – Jack Lovel

Alwill Interiors selected warm and tactile finishes for the interiors. Photo – Jack Lovel

Gabled House wraps around a central courtyard that’s both a ‘sunlight sink’ (bringing the northern light into the house)  and a place to sit completely sheltered from the wind. Photo – Jack Lovel

All the windows to the west are screened and sheltered. Photo – Jack Lovel

To the rear is a family space with a kids level lawn and pool. Photo – Jack Lovel

A shade structure to the garden hangs over the pool, providing shade and dappled light to the swimming area. Photo – Jack Lovel

Photo – Jack Lovel

Amelia Barnes
9th of November 2021

The owners of this Cottesloe site loved the gabled form and expressed structure of Barn House designed by Clayton Orszaczky in collaboration with Alwill Interiors and Dangar Barin Smith, so they called on the same group to design their own new house. 

Instead of being located on a triangular block in Bondi however, the new client’s site was a rectangular block in Cottesloe, Western Australia, with neighbours on either side. 

‘The challenge here was to site the house to allow in the light to the north and connect the garden to the home in a meaningful way,’ says Michelle Orszaczky, director at Clayton Orszaczky. ‘It was an opportunity for us to take ideas from a previous project and develop them for a new place in a new state.’

Responding to the vastly different climatic conditions, Gabled House wraps around a central courtyard that’s both a ‘sunlight sink’ (bringing northern light into the house) and a place to sit completely sheltered from the wind. All living areas feature garden outlooks as a result, most notably the dining room and kids lounge surrounded by garden spaces on three sides. 

These rooms (nicknamed the garden pavilions) are partially separated from the open-plan areas of the home by a recycled brick spine – a strong masonry element that runs the entire length of the house. ‘It baffles and reflects the northern sun, separates the pavilions and adds a solidity reminiscent of a colonnade,’ says Michelle. Oversized pivot doors allow visual and physical connection throughout the entire house as required.

Materials are similar to the Barn House palette, providing a refreshing point of difference among the Cottesloe housing landscape. ‘We discovered that building in Perth was much more masonry focussed. This appears to be changing,’ says Michelle. ‘The house is essentially black white and timber. The client loved tactile warm finishes and this home is very much about that.’

While visually similar to the Barn House, Gabled House is an entirely different home unique to its site, environment and Western Australian locale. The project was designed almost entirely remotely – a testament to the relationship between Alwill Interiors, Dangar Barin Smith, Wandoo Building Company and the trusting client. 

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