Cypress House proves you don’t have to compromise on design when it comes to sustainability.
Jeni and Matt Westle of Loreco Constructions had spent three years searching for the perfect place to build their family home when they finally came across an empty block of land in Flinders. They enlisted the help of Insider Outsider director Dave Brodziak and set about establishing a new, but considered, property on the 1104sq m block.
The resulting 7.5-star NatHERS rating residence is a testament to their commitment to environmentally conscious builds and Dave’s vision for a ‘layered coastal house and a secluded suburban retreat’.
‘A shared love of working with timber informed a large part of the discussion around materiality, and the opportunity to use a broad range of sustainably sourced timbers fed back into the design of both interior and exterior spaces,’ Dave says.
‘It took Matt a lot of time to research and source the right materials, but he feels the extra pressure was worth it.’
Reclaimed cypress timber is the hero of the home’s geometric facade, designed to complement its quiet, coastal surrounds. Other wood materials like blackbutt cladding and spotted gum floors are combined with recycled bricks and tonal surfaces for a calming atmosphere inside. It’s a harmonious blend of old and new, finished with built-in nooks, cabinetry and soft lantern lighting.
But one of the most important considerations for the build was ensuring it responded to ‘the fall of the land’. Its passive solar design northern orientation and eaves were specifically designed to direct sunlight in throughout winter and prevent it during summer – decreasing the need to use artificial cooling and heating and energy consumption.
‘On cooler nights, light the Chiminees Phillippe fireplace, and once roaring it heats the surrounding recycled brick generating thermal mass keeping the home warm longer,’ Dave adds. There’s also a 10,000-litre water tank connected to irrigation system, a 12kw solar battery and an outdoor entertaining area in the private courtyard, just beyond the property’s sliding doors.
Matt and Jeni have recently sold the home, but say they are already eagerly working on their next sustainable projects.
‘As the world transition towards a sustainable future, we see our industry capable of huge positive change by shifting to more sustainable practices,’ Matt notes.