Occupying a small urban site facing the harbour, this house is a carefully balanced play of spaces within a crisp gable form. The project is conceived as a finely detailed timber structure resting on a rock plinth.

Approached via a bridge that crosses a courtyard garden cut into the hill, the main living space focuses on the harbour view. The room follows the volume of the gable, with the ridge split to form a continuous skylight that runs the length of the house. Views of [and from] the street are veiled by external timber louvres . Secondary rooms are accessed via doors disguised as cabinets and bookcases.

The lower level changes materiality – we are now within the ‘plinth’; stonework predominates over timber. The rooms follow the contour of the land, stepping down along a long gallery, culminating in a bedroom suite that opens to a lush private garden.

Every part of the small site has been carefully handled to extend the sense of space of the interior to the boundaries, and let natural light into the house from all sides. The end result is tailored, calm, playful and enduring.


Photography by Simon Devitt

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Jack McKinney [formerly of McKinney + Windeatt Architects] established Jack McKinney Architects in 2018. He has been recognised for the quality of his work at a local and national level.

Jack McKinney Architects is a design-led practice focused on residential, hospitality, interiors and bespoke commercial projects. We aim to work closely and collaboratively with our clients to deliver outcomes tailored to them and their needs. We would be happy to discuss any new project opportunities and welcome you to make contact.