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9 Outrageously Beautiful Australian Coastal Homes

Architecture

There’s nothing more quintessentially Australian than a beach house. Whether you’re lucky enough to score a stay at a friends’ holiday house, or share bunk beds with cousins at the family shack, most of us have a few nostalgic memories of summer holidays, sandy toes and icy poles at a beach house somewhere!

Today, with summer holidays well underway, we’re revisiting some of our favourite beachside homes of 2021!

4th January, 2022

The artist’s studio by Watts Studio and Amiconi Architect is a new build on a historic property. Spray Farm dates back to 1851. Photo – Timothy Kaye. Styling – Marsha Golemac.

The studio looks out over Corio Bay and the You Yangs. Photo – Timothy Kaye. Styling – Marsha Golemac.

A kitchen garden is located next to the studio space. Photo – Timothy Kaye. Styling – Marsha Golemac.

A Dreamy Seaside Artist’s Studio On A 19th Century Farm

Of all the fantasies in all the world, being an artist, working in a dreamy studio by the sea is dream-come-true material. To do so on a 19th-century farmhouse property, with panoramic views across the Bellarine Peninsula is simply the stuff of fairytales!

The owners of historic Spray Farm on the Bellarine Peninsula engaged Watts Studio and Amiconi Architect to design a new studio on the ocean side of the property where the pair of artists could spend days painting and looking out over the sea. Taking the heritage-listed homestead and the history of the farmhouse locale as inspiration, the designers created a space greatly informed by surrounds but with its own contemporary characteristics.

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Baker Boys Beach House by Refresh Design. Roofing – COLORBOND® steel in the colour Wallaby® in the TRIMDEK® profile by Lysaght. Photo – Christopher Frederick Jones. Styling – Flokk Interiors

Baker Boys Beach House by Refresh Design. Roofing – COLORBOND® steel in the colour Wallaby® in the TRIMDEK® profile by Lysaght. Photo – Christopher Frederick Jones. Styling – Flokk Interiors

Baker Boys Beach House – The other end of the structure is cantilevered to take full advantage of water views. Photo – Christopher Frederick Jones. Styling – Flokk Interiors

A Camping Inspired Holiday House, Shared By Three Families!

The brief for this Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island, Queensland) house was like no other. Designed for three families who share the property at different times, the clients requested a home influenced by local campsites, where cooking, gathering and sleeping zones are united under the one tarp.

Architects Refresh Design with interior designers Flokk Interiors applied this idea to form an elevated camping experience. It’s a home purely for spending time in nature with friends and family – just like the island’s campsites and beach shacks of old.

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The house has evolved across two additional stages including the addition of the pool and outdoor deck. Photo – Trevor Mein

The Mornington Peninsula beach house of Nik Karalis, CEO of Woods Bagot. Photo – Trevor Mein

An Architect’s Breathtaking Beach House, Renovated Over 20 Years

When you’re the CEO of global architecture practice, people expect your home to be pretty special.

That’s certainly the case for Nik Karalis, CEO of Woods Bagot – but the architect hasn’t been in any rush to finish his family’s beach house on the Mornington Peninsula.  After 20 years and three major renovations, we’re excited to finally share the completed home!

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Bones House utilising an earthy and textural palette, the updated property embraces its famous coastal surrounds, appearing as though it’s always been there. Photo – Nic Stephens Photography. Styling – Anne Robertson

Bones House is a reimagining of a brick veneer home facing Victoria’s Bells Beach. Photo – Nic Stephens Photography. Styling – Anne Robertson

A Mid-Century Reimagining Of A Bells Beach Home

It’s hard to believe, but when this sprawling Bells Beach property was last for sale, it sat on the market for months. Few saw the potential in the existing brick veneer home on site, but Lachlan Shepherd Architects did!

Drawing on his training at McGlashan Everist Architects in Geelong (designers of the iconic 1963 modernist house, Heide II), Lachlan and his team were engaged by the new owners to reimagine the existing building.

Utilising an earthy and textural palette, the updated property embraces its famous coastal surrounds, appearing as though it’s always been there.

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A Casually Confident Beachside Home – While not immediately obvious, the extension design was influenced by both the original house, and an adjacent heritage pumping station. Photo – Jack Lovel. Styling – Jo Carmichael

A Casually Confident Beachside Home

Until recently, the 1907 house on this South Fremantle site was in a poor condition. Rooms were falling apart, and multiple lean-to additions had been added over the years that needed to go.

David Barr Architects were brought in to bring the property back to life, resulting in a new two-storey brick volume containing the main living areas.

The new extension toes the line between contemporary and classic – ideal for the clients and their casual beach lifestyle.

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The Bundeena house comprises two pavilions wrapping a courtyard. Photo – Katherine Lu.

A simple timber frame is perched atop a concrete slab, flanked by sliding glass doors that provide important connection to the native garden. Photo – Katherine Lu.

A Minimalist, Semi-Prefabricated Beach House

The Bundeena House by Tribe Studio is a prototype for an assemble-on-site kit home. Located at the beachside town of Bundeena in NSW, this project  is a response to distinct challenge identified by Architect Hannah Tribe – the need for more good, thoughtful architect-designed homes, without hefty construction costs.

Hannah designed this partially pre-fabricated beach shack with a focus on good orientation, maximum natural light, and lower heating and cooling bills. It has the ‘vibe’ of an architecturally-designed house, without all the bespoke finishes, and bells and whistles that can often blow out the budget.

This prototype serves as Hannah’s own family beach house, which has allowed her full freedom to experiment and innovate!

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It’s not a beach house without an outdoor shower! Photo – Dave Kulesza. Styling – Bea + Co

A new chimney (built using traditional methods) with an outdoor fireplace anchors the living pavilion to the site. Photo – Dave Kulesza. Styling – Bea + Co

This weatherboard home is now a party house for five! Photo – Dave Kulesza. Styling – Bea + Co

A Beach Cottage Turned Ultimate Entertainer!

Looking at the period facade of this Portsea beach house, one might assume it’s a simple, modest, heritage home. Not so!

After a recent renovation and extension by NTF Architecture, the formerly rundown weatherboard is now an expansive holiday home for a family of five. The completed and extended home is the perfect place for the family and their guests to gather, enjoy long summer days together, and huddle around the outdoor fire in winter!

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The Bendalong House was originally designed as a beach house but the design was so successful, it became the client’s full-time residence! Photo – Robert Walsh.

Community-oriented design was paramount; the clients didn’t want to construct anything too flashy or ostentatious that wouldn’t be in-keeping with the area. Photo – Robert Walsh.

A Contemporary Beach House Designed By An Architect For Her Parents

When creating a new home surrounded by owner-built properties on the NSW South Coast, the owners were intent on ensuring the result was modest, not ostentatious, and respectful of the local community. The perfect person for the job? Their daughter, architect Madeleine Blanchfield!

Not only did Madeleine perfectly understand the desires of her parents, her architecture expertise enabled a sympathetic design response perfectly suited to its Bendalong context.

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The Mays Point House by Tanner Architects. Photo – Adam Gibson. Stylist – Indi Beard.

The low profile house is a simply and respectful example of coastal architecture. Photo – Adam Gibson. Stylist – Indi Beard.

A Breathtaking Coastal Home On The Tasmanian Shoreline

The Mays Point House by Tanner Architects is an exercise in robust, yet refined architectural design, amongst incredible natural surrounds.

By utilising a resilient and muted material palette, alongside a subtle interior scheme, the house allows the incredible South Arm Peninsula environs to take centre stage. This holiday home is an understated and respectful response to its sublime context.

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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