Seacliff House

by Chris Elliott Architects
Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects

After numerous explorations and sketches it was decided to go with the peculiarities of the site rather than struggle against them. So, a long linear element sits above a row of columns, providing privacy and protection and the upper level whilst allowing the ground level to be open and very transparent. Cantilevers at each end of the linear element allow for the requisite space at bedroom level while simultaneously freeing up space and providing cover for outdoor areas below.
Structurally, a long concrete box (the bedroom level) sits atop a series of concrete columns that run from the basement up through the living level. The walls at ground level are mainly glass – influenced but not controlled by the rigour of the structural system, rather, they are allowed to curve and weave in and out to respond to site constraints and opportunities at various points around the perimeter. A compact solid core provides stability and contains a stair, bathroom, fridge, cupboards and pantry whilst creating only a minimal visual obstruction.

The ground floor is conceptually a transparent platform. Nature is welcomed in and not excluded. It is ordered by a series of columns and defined by solid walls only where necessary. Glass runs along, around and above the solid elements while large sliding and pivoting glass doors open to outside.
The basement level is conceived as a grotto combining water, rock and light. The solid sandstone foundation stone is carved away to create space. Rather than remove all material as is often done, in various places it is left to invade the space thus connecting in an intimate way the house to the very essence of Sydney – its sandstone base. Water occurs at various levels – a pool, a shallow reflecting pool with bridge and an outdoor bath. At times strong shafts of light penetrate the spaces, as through rock fissures in a cave. At other times when light levels are low strong colours help to create warmth and atmosphere.
The bedroom level, a long linear box is conceptually a protective cocoon, providing comfort and privacy with glimpses out through a variety of openings, with the option of one or two layers of curtains-the first opaque, and the second a translucent veil. On the outside the surface of the box is enlivened with series of curvilinear light scoops. These allow light in and offer selective views out, such as a view of the sky when lying in the bath.
At the roof level, conceived as a belvedere or lookout, a study opens onto a small deck. Here your journey ends with a panoramic outlook over the ocean. A private sundeck with built in timber seating and a fireplace provides a comfortable place to contemplate the ocean and the stars at night.

Photos by: Richard Glover and Vladimir Sitta

  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects
  • Seacliff House Chris Elliott Architects

Sponsor

Sponsor

  • Loukas Residence

    Loukas Residence

    This residence is a round shaped fair face concrete building, with a semi detached rectangle entrance.
    The long narrow windows following the form of the structure look out ...

  • Island Retreat

    Island Retreat

    Auckland-based architectural firm Fearon Hay Architects has designed the Island Retreat on Waiheke Island, New Zealand. Island Retreat by Fearon Hay Architects: "An ar...

  • Eden Hotel

    Eden Hotel

    The quite big volume of this project has been divided into a sequence of small buildings – high and narrow – that draws a sort of line upstream in the valley. Entirely covered ...

  • Stunning, Modern Townhouse Living

    Stunning, Modern Townhous..

    Stunning, Modern Townhouse Living within a boutique newly constructed Condominium.
    Two triplex apartments thoughtfully and elegantly combined, by the renowned Flank developm...

  • House on Lake Okoboji

    House on Lake Okoboji

    It’s all about the lake,” was our clients’ direction when we began designing this vacation home in rural Iowa.
    Located in rural Iowa, Lake Okoboji is a part of a glaci...

  • The white House in Copenhagen

    The white House in Copenh..

    Description from the architects: The house aesthetic is derived from inspirations brought about by the labyrinthine mountain village architecture, those that you may find familiar ...

  • Casa Ovalle-Salinas

    Casa Ovalle-Salinas

    Chilean architectural firm Jorge Figueroa Asociados has completed the Casa Ovalle-Salinas. Completed in 2011, this two-story contemporary home is highlighted by its concrete constr...

  • Punta brava 2 Residence

    Punta brava 2 Residence

    Punta Brava 2 is situated on the Costa Brava (Spain) along the Mediterranean Sea. This project opens into the sea at once that closes to provide some privacy about their neighbors....

  • Casa Viva

    Casa Viva

    This beach house has as its main virtue that it allows natural light to uncover it, showing different shades based on the time of day and according to the position of the sliding e...

  • Architectural Masterpiece

    Architectural Masterpiece

    This sophisticated home is located in Johannesburg, South Africa. It is elegant and comfortable, and makes use of a variety of decorative elements to create a harmonious whole. ...