Armed with a thoughtful combination of natural light, garden outlooks and angled design, this copper-clad townhouse in Australia manages to achieve compact, multi-level living with a deep sense of privacy — despite its location on an exposed corner site. The Bondi House, named for the beachy suburb where it’s located in eastern Sydney, comes from Fox Johnston Architects and has already been shortlisted for the 2021 Australian Interior Design Awards, Houses Awards and the AIA NSW Architecture Awards.
The home itself spans an impressive 212 square meters on a 153 square meter site, while still leaving room for landscape spaces for the owners to cultivate. The small space doesn’t infringe upon the neighbors either, instead using its setback and deep balcony to offer up additional space along the public walkway and light to the homes on the northwest side.
The living room uses concrete floors paired with exposed timber beams, as well as windows and doors crafted from western red cedar. The architects also chose local Sydney sandstone for the office plinth and dark stone for the kitchen benchtops. Natural light and organic tones cover the entire interior, culminating in a central courtyard that separates the kitchen from the living room, accented with curved windows. The office sits where the car space once stood, though the area could easily be refitted into a parking space if the owners ever choose to sell the property.
“The central courtyard was an early idea we developed to gather light and segment the living level into zones, which we think is more interesting in a small space, rather than that feeling of just being in one long room,” said Conrad Johnston, Director at Fox Johnston. “The copper wall is big gesture for the setting and the street. Next to a traditional semi we’ve attached this bold, curved copper wall on a tiny block. This sculptural element crowns and connects the entire site. It’s a bit full on but in a gentle way.” Copper lasts long and doesn’t easily degrade or corrode, making it immune to most environmental elements or hazards. Plus, it is completely recyclable at the end of its life.
Other sustainable features to the home include locally sourced construction materials, low VOC diminishes, 4 Green Start fittings and fixtures, native landscaping to reduce water usage and a 3,000-liter rainwater tank for irrigation.
Images courtesy of Brett Boardman