Presence and scale in an urban street setting

Design Unity’s Warragul based Ida Chalet proved to be a worthy winner of Excellence in the Use of Glass at the 2017 Building Designers Association Victoria (BDAV) awards.
The home, which was designed by Berwick’s Design Unity and built by Olsson Building, caught the judge’s attention due to its “impressive cathedral-style facade” and “the design of the horizontal windows complimenting the kitchen/lounge outlook”.
The judges also noted the level of detail in the angular geometry and its ability to create a unique feature that has a dramatic effect from outside and within. The home’s capacity to generate a striking solution for the clients with a feeling space, whilst producing a design and construction achievement was also celebrated.
Design Unity Building Designer Warren Jenkins explained that his approach to the design was to create a street frontage faced by soaring cathedral windows and front deck that are deliberately intended to attract attention and encourage neighbours to stop by for a chat.
“This unique four bedroom, two level home in Warragul has been purposefully designed to support better work-life balance for its resident family, and encourage social engagement,” Mr Jenkins said.
“The home also integrates a home office into the layout, offering savings on business travel time that can be more happily spent with family.”
While the narrow front boundary of this site widens out across the block, the towering vertical lines of the cathedral windows at the front foretell the spacious horizontal volume of the external entertainment area and pool at the rear.
Expansive glazing across the back wall of the home connects the indoor and outdoor living zones and fills the house with light. The detailed brickwork facade – slim line Flemish bond brickwork at the lower level contrasted with angular charcoal brickwork following the roof form – add to the bold street presence of the house.
A sleek functional kitchen features warm timber highlights, and a large butler’s pantry allows the centre island to remain clear of clutter.
The home’s second level has been tucked into the roof space to minimise the height of the building and ensure solar gain to neighbouring homes.
This upstairs parent zone houses the master bedroom, an ensuite and a dressing area that makes clever use of what might have otherwise been a narrow piece of underutilised space.
“We have dealt with Design Unity on various projects for over five years – with a simple brief they have excelled themselves,” the home’s owner said.

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