The challenge of this site was to maximise a spectacular aspect and, at the same time, create a private and liveable apartment building. The parcel of land runs north-south with views to the north and east up to the neighbouring, over-scaled apartment building. A simple and strong diagram was developed, comprising three components: A large dark-grey block, predominantly containing building utilities, which forms the building’s visual foundation; A series of three storey-high, cantilevered blades that allow each bedroom and living area to have a view of the water while maintaining a sense of privacy from the neighbouring building; An excavated, retained and planted ground area, which is developing into a lush garden setting with tall, ivy-covered walls.
The details and materials used were selected to reinforce the clarity of this plan and to withstand the pressures of time in an inherently corrosive environment. Durable finishes that don’t require painting – such as low-profile concrete blocks (hand-cut from concrete pavers), and natural stone pavers and cladding – were used throughout.
The building’s interiors blend effortlessly with the exterior – the same stone is used for balconies and internal spaces, which sit flush for a seamless finish. Spanish limestone, blackened solid wood and Corian® joinery make for classic, timeless interiors and the integration of lighting and other services into recessed strips creates streamlined spaces opening graciously onto the magnificent view.
The most dramatic feature of this building is the boldly uncompromising concrete panels that cantilever from the charcoal core. Stainless steel shelf angles and reinforced steel mortar beds, all of which are concealed, enabled us to achieve this tailored appearance in an effortless manner. Completed 2007.
SMART DESIGN STUDIO ARCHITECTURE FROM THE INSIDE OUT