Designing your home around a swimming pool – not the other way around – may seem like an unusual move.
For Michael, though, it made perfect sense for his new home. Michael and his wife, Alison, love entertaining and regularly open their home to friends and family. They had already purchased the perfect spot: a 1.7 acre bush block nestled in the Western Australian coastal town of Dunsborough. All they needed was the house to suit – one that embraced outdoor living with flair.
The Entertainer's Vision
“We wanted more space and a pool, so we purchased the land around four years ago and sat on it while we were renovating a couple of homes,” says Michael. “We weren’t too sure what we were going to do initially, but we designed the house around the pool. It was going to be more traditional at first with a pitched roof, but we decided to go ultra-modern with a flat roof.”
The Modern Look
“We have always liked modern minimalist design”, says Michael, “we like clean lines, negative detail, the ability to use colour to accentuate sections of a house, all of which we could exploit by using Stria™ Cladding installed horizontally and vertically. It also is a clean flat finish which really looks good when painted.”
“What really inspired the look of our house was the look of sea containers used in architecture. We had seen a few projects in Christchurch in New Zealand as an example and loved the square look and flat roof design. We took a bit of this into the design of our current house with a series of container-like modules pieced together to get a similar look.”
Stria boards were laid both horizontally and vertically throughout Michael and Alison’s home, then painted in contrasting tones of white and rich chocolate to achieve an architectural look. “Stria suited the look we were after perfectly,” says Michael. “The surface is very easy to paint and looks fabulous when finished.”
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The mixed orientations of the Stria Cladding work to create a contemporary look and differentiate the components of the façade – ensuring the home doesn’t look monolithic or boxy. The horizontally laid Stria also helps draw the eye outwards, softening the transition between indoors and out while leading the eye towards the pool area which is a central feature of the home.
Builder Anton Smith from Bluewater Building agrees. “The benefit of Scyon Walls™ products (like Stria) is you can use different profiles together to truly achieve stand-out features,” he says.
Making the Smart Choice
While Stria Cladding was the perfect choice for getting the modern aesthetic Michael and Alison wanted for their home, it was also the smart choice for their bushland environment. Low-maintenance and resistant to damage from bushfire and termites, Stria Cladding would allow Michael and Alison to get the look they wanted with peace-of-mind.
“When properly installed and painted, we don’t have many maintenance issues relating to these products. Not only that, we deal with BAL fire ratings which require materials, in some instances, to be fire resistant. Stria has a BAL rating of up to BAL 40 so it was the perfect choice for this home. It gives the owners peace-of-mind particularly because they’re in a bushfire prone area,” says Anton.
Looking for More Modern Inspiration?
Michael agrees. “Building in a high fire risk area we were definitely restricted as to what we could build in. Timber cladding was definitely not allowed due to the fire rating but that didn’t worry us as we didn’t want a finish that was not keeping with a modern theme. With a high fire resistance rating, Stria Cladding was the perfect product for us. It also allowed us the ability to build timber frame which is a far better insulating option for our area in the southwest.”
“Living in the southwest of Western Australia we are surrounded by a stunning natural environment and an equally stunning community of well-designed and interesting homes built to fit the region. People who look to move to the southwest are generally more open to buying a house that is different to your city suburban brick and tiled house. We designed our house to take in as much of the natural environment that we could so we used a large amount of glass to bring the outside inside.”
Living the Luxurious Life
After an 11-month build, Michael and Alison are now enjoying entertaining their friends and family in their new modern pad. The solar-passive home embraces both nature and luxury, combining bushland views with crisp, clean lines. And true to the original concept, the home showcases a luxury pool, complemented by an alfresco area that would be equally at home amongst the glamour of 1960s Las Vegas as it is in the Australian bush.
“We entertain regularly, and friends and neighbours love the look and feel of our home,” says Michael. “The house far exceeded our original vision. The clean lines of Stria Cladding, the colour choices, the position on the block between the trees and the fact that we have cut into the elevation of the block has made it something we are very proud of,” he says.
“We feel a sense of pride when we walk around our beautiful home. We feel it’s the best house we have ever built and we like entertaining and enjoy having friends and family over for dinner. We have BBQ’s in summer when the sun is setting over the trees with the kookaburra’s laughing and the kangaroo’s jumping in the backyard – you can’t get any more Australian!