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Registered Architects

Studio 104, 28 Waterloo Quay 
PO Box 595, Wellington, 6140  |  04 473 9777

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Aotea House

Porirua

     The project brief described a family home with generous spaces on a striking site. As their young family grow the clients need space for them to share, and to retreat to. They presented us with a challenge to make the interior distinctive, while remaining simple. Detail was important, and we had many conversations over the material palette, and how the materials would add definition through texture and natural colour. It was always important for the house to create a series of outdoor spaces where there was a strong visual connection to the sea, but where wind would be mitigated by the layout, always providing sheltered spaces. The form itself needed to be bold to bring order to a harsh surrounding landscape. The wing roof form provided an axis to the living spaces and accentuation of the fineness of these spaces against the more impermeable block of the bedrooms and entry.

The clients also enjoy welcoming others to their home, and wanted a house that would accommodate visiting families with ease, where children and adults could occupy separate parts of the house, while still being visually connected. The pool and the landscaping were priorities, and these areas would form an extension of the inside world. The house had to create its own privacy, the site is exposed and the immediate environment barren. The family wanted to have a strong entrance wall, which protected the private realm. A generous parking area was required due to the long driveway. The brief was a combination of an almost-rural house (no near neighbours, a distance from the street, and a car-ride from amenities) and a very urban one (striking in its formal entrance presentation, quite impermeable to the exterior, on a site with little flat land). A bold occupation of a rugged site.