At first glance, the delightfully sinuous roof that tops the Lauriston house makes the building look more like sculpture than a home in the Australian bush. But a closer look reveals that the building truly is a welcoming retreat meticulously detailed with the luxurious comforts of home and more. Designed by Seeley Architects, the Lauriston house is a beautiful dwelling that embraces the outdoors as well as passive solar principles for an environmentally friendly footprint.
Designed for a client who sought intimacy with the outdoors, the 380-square-meter Lauriston house’s rectangular volume is predominately covered in floor-to-ceiling glazing to overlook the landscape of olive groves and gum trees. To protect the glass home from the elements, the architects carefully sited the building and topped it with an undulating roof that protects against rain and sun. The roof’s wavy shape also references the hilly landscape near Kyneton, Victoria.
“The geometrically aligned rows of olive trees set against a voluptuous landscape evoke a quiet, unspoken tension,” wrote the architects, referencing the contrast between the indigenous flora and the structured olive groves. “The house mimics this tension with the relationship of a meticulously detailed and structured frame against a seemingly effortless floating, sinuous roof.” The building’s glazed form is given a heightened sense of lightness with its bold cantilever.
Local natural materials and textures give the home a sense of warmth, from the Messmate timber lining to the colonial-inspired French pattern bluestone. The interior is organized around a centrally located alfresco entrance that separates the private areas on the east end from the public spaces to the west. The open-plan living and dining area opens up to the cantilevered deck with stunning landscape views of hills, dams, and olive groves. The home’s integration of passive solar principles and rainwater capture systems ensures a lower energy footprint.
Images © Peter Hyatt