Existing apartment – brick walls, traditional timber floor (whitewashed at some point, not original finish), some modern changes to apartment, 80’s kitchen + bathroom
Existing Courtyard – very tired, terracotta tiles, leaking, no existing seating, only small laundry was original (we extended the existing courtyard to included an outdoor shower + installed a second toilet in the laundry – along with a full makeover of the laundry).
Building is Heritage listed – Local significance only, therefore we had to have a heritage report undertaken for council approval. Council did impose some restrictions; we had to retain the decorative cornices and external corbels. No change was made to visible window + doors
The art deco period is a great period of architecture; the buildings are well made and beautifully detailed. We wanted to retain this level of quality while opening the apartment up for modern living. Retaining some art deco features keep some character of the apartment, acknowledging the history.
The clients call the apartment their ‘diamond in the sky’, the project cam about as the clients were used to living by the water but due to work and the kids schooling found them selves spending more time in the city. As a result they decided to split their time between the city + Bondi to make the best of both worlds.
The clients hail from both New Zealand and South Africa and wanted this reflected in the design of the space. The materials were picked to create a space that was elegant, modern but most importantly relaxed. The minimal palette also came about in order to make the whole apartment feel like one whole. The cornice wraps around ‘one space’, this only being broken up by the joinery dividing the apartment into public and private spaces.
The timber/black + white materially was a way of tying all the spaces together and also a reflection of both the client + MCK’s design sensibility.
The apartment was opened up to the north, a new sliding bi fold door opens the entire width of the kitchen up to the courtyard allowing this space to become primary living space during the summer. The new curved seating provides and entertainment + reflection space, the design of this takes its cue from the art deco building and the overall material palette.
The key design element in the project was removing the walls which divided the room, making it feel like on large room and then inserting the joinery into the spaces to provided spaces for different functions. There is storage on both sides of the joinery for the kitchen, bedrooms, bathroom + general household storage. The clients are still finding cupboards to fill!
The long kitchen bench runs the length of the space, linking the three spaces (kitchen, dining, living) together both physically and visually.
Externally the new seat and extension of the laundry help to define the courtyard space and tie it back to the internal spaces. It gives the outdoor space its own identity and purpose.
The parquetry is new, a great client initiative.