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Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Australia Architecture News - Apr 05, 2022 - 19:53   1714 views

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Seattle-based architecture firm Olson Kundig has built a family home nestled in the sand dunes of Bilgola Beach on the northern coast of Sydney, Australia.

The project, named Bilgola Beach House, is a 873-square-metre family house that features operable louvred shutters to respond the climatic conditions of the site.

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Designed with an L-shaped form, while the ground level is designed as flexible and open as possible overlooking the beach, the bold, louvred lateral shutters are added as main design component to form the overall language of the house.

The house has two levels with a basement floor and the ground level of the house is envisioned as transparent and open. In the basement floor, the architects design a vestibule, surf board storage, a wine room, a powder room, mechanical and a family game room. 

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

The ground level is dedicated to four bedrooms, a study room and Rumpus Room. The upper level includes two master bedroom, master closet and a reading room.

Passing through palm trees and Norfolk Pines, the site’s entrance leads through the solid volumes of the home’s main and guest wings. Upon approaching the front door, the view opens up to the sand dune and beach beyond. 

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

The house is designed to respond to the beachfront environment of its headland site. The house resists against Australia’s dramatic climate conditions, where harsh sunlight, high winds and flooding are common. 

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

The structure is raised on concrete piles, allowing sand and water to move in and out beneath the building. 

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

At the same time, the design allows the family to connect with the natural environment, with shaded retractable window walls that merge inside with outside and provide passive ventilation. 

An interior courtyard brings filtered daylight into the core of the home, where a central water feature helps to cool the air.

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

The studio preferred to use bold colors to reference to the colors of the local sands. 

The color of the home’s board-formed concrete walls relates the architecture to its site and helps it merge with the natural condition of the headlands as it weathers over time.

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

"This was my first time working in Australia, and it was an honor and a privilege to be invited to design this special home," said Tom Kundig, FAIA, RIBA, Design Principal. 

"The house attempts to address the varied climatic conditions of Australia in the best way, allowing the owners to open or close it to the beachfront as the weather changes," Kundig added.

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Lower level floor plan

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Ground level floor plan

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Upper level floor plan

Olson Kundig's Bilgola Beach House features operable louvred shutters in Sydney

Section 

Olson Kundig designed doughnut-shaped Children's Museum in Germany. The firm also designed the renovation of the Space Needle in Seattle - the 57-year-old icon underwent a $100 million revamp in 2018 and overseen by Olson Kundig Design Principal Alan Maskin. 

Project facts

Project name: Bilgola Beach House

Architects: Olson Kundig

Project Size: 9,382 SF (8,147SF interior conditioned + 1,235 interior unconditioned)

Project Team: Tom Kundig, FAIA, RIBA, Design Principal; Kevin Kudo-King, AIA, LEED® AP, Principal; Simon Clews, Project Manager and Project Architect; Motomi Kudo-King, Lindsay Kunz and Martina Bendel, Architectural Staff; Debbie Kennedy, LEED® AP ID+C, Interior Design; Megan Adams, Casey Hill, Maresa Patterson, Interior Design Staff

Consultants: Bellevarde Constructions (general contractor); Advanced Design Innovations (gizmo fabrication); Auric Projects (client representative); BBF Planners (planner); CAB Consulting (landscape architect); Horton Coastal Engineering (coastal engineer); JK Geotechnics (geotech consultant); KB Architectural Services with Phil Turner (gizmo design); Niteo Lighting (lighting design); Partridge Engineering (civil and structural engineer); RJ Air (mechanical engineer); TILT Industrial Design (gizmo fabrication).

All images © Rory Gardiner

All drawings © Olson Kundig

> via Olson Kundig