Overlooking Swan River and Perth City, the modern South Perth House replaces an old residence where the clients have been living for a few years. Occupying a sloping site at the east end of South Perth in Australia, the new corner home stretches its steel frame on a narrow plot of land. Australian architectural practice Matthews McDonald Architects imagined a contemporary collection of interiors wrapped around a courtyard and gathering views of the surroundings through extensive glazing.

Rising three stories in the air, this dream home takes into consideration the couple’s love for cooking and entertaining – flexible social spaces were designed to be as inviting as possible for the owners, as well as visiting family and friends. Eco-friendly details keep a minimal energy consumption – photovoltaic collectors, rain water harvesting, mechanical shading devices and a hybrid air-conditioning/ventilation system were installed to upgrade comfort, while mirroring the Australian landscape became the main design challenge.

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“While the house is unapologetic in its form and use of materials, it responds to its context in a number of ways. The bulk of the house, particularly along the exposed length, has been broken down into smaller components and different materials are used to articulate parts of the building. Masonry walls create a podium and backbone for the steel and glass boxes and the boundary walls define the external spaces while also providing a backdrop to verge planting and contributing to the appearance of the streetscape.”

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