Ocean Acres - Torquay
When a home becomes a focal point for a family to express themselves in ways they never thought possible, then we as architects feel pretty good to have been part of the process to design the ‘stage’ for this to occur .
The ‘stage’ consists of two timber, corrugated iron and rammed earth pavilions, a salt water pool and substantial workshop. All spaces encourage winter sun to maintain temperatures that rarely drop below 18 degrees. In summer the house maintains a comfortable 26 degrees or less – even through sweltering heat waves of 40 degree+ days.
Natural light abounds. At night living space windows become the frames through which the moon is tracked across the sky. The silence created by double glazed windows, highly insulated walls and the mass of the rammed earth walls further enhances the experience. The dwelling as holiday resort and sanctuary becomes reality.
A love of timber by both owner and architect – mostly left in a clear finished and oiled state - is evident throughout. Reclaimed jarrah flooring, timber veneer cabinetry, red Baltic window and door joinery and Australian cypress pine structure and cladding all work wonderfully well with the rich tones of rammed earth walls and colorbond wall cladding.
Energy Saving Measures include:
The use of an electric heat pump solar hot water system (up to 400% efficient)
The inclusion of a highly efficient (70%+) slow combustion heater which will utilise demolition ‘offcuts’ for a number of years to come
The use of highly efficient (300%+) ‘inverter’ split system heating and cooling – which will be able to heat/cool over twice the area recommended by the manufacturer due to the thermal efficiency of the house
The extensive use of sustainable timber for framing (plantation pine), decking (radial sawn silvertop ash), external stairs (recycled durability class 1 Australian hardwood), window and door joinery (naturally durable Red Baltic pine and reclaimed Karri trafficable sills) and joinery (low formaldehyde substrate materials)