Brooklyn House

House extension

Our family home was a traditional single storey two-bedroom villa. It was too small for our growing family, dilapidated and lacked a good connection to the outside.

We undertook an ambitious rebuild and extension, doubling the floor plan while maintaining the integrity of the villa upfront. The extension out the back is bold and modern, with vaulted ceilings, a mezzanine, a bridge, an expansive roof deck, open plan living on the ground level and direct access to the patio and back yard.

The project has created a warm, safe, comfortable home with delightful, playful spaces for our growing family to thrive in.

The site is long and narrow, running east to west, dropping down one level from the street level at the east to the lawn out the west side. There was a challenge to squeeze the spaces onto the narrow site. There was a risk the kitchen area would be far back under the house and away from the natural light.

This was resolved by creating a double height space above the dining room. This space lead to the mezzanine, bridge and huge wrap around windows. The windows bath the dining room and kitchen below in natural light, creating a sense of light and openness.

As the client and architect we had a unique opportunity to be our own client. We wanted to modernise the house, making it warm, dry and safe for our family. We also wanted to add a bedroom, create a flexible space (mezzanine, rumpus room, spare bedroom) and have a generous open plan living/kitchen/dining space with direct access to the back lawn. Increasing storage and adding a workshop was also key.

We designed a modern form at the back of the house to slot into and under the existing villa. The villa became the main entry, bedrooms and bathrooms. The new extension housed the mezzanine, bridge and roof deck on the upper level, and open plan living/kitchen/dining on the lower level. The addition leads directly to the patio and back lawn, so we can use it with ease and also keep an eye on our young children.

The villa has retained its integrity, and the new build is very modern with huge windows, large voids and a sense of fun. The two forms tie in with their scale and complement each other. The house is a delight to live in.

The new build is intentionally very distinct from the villa. The new build is clad in dark stained vertical cedar board and batten. The living room roof is a flat warm roof to accommodate the roof deck. The ground floor is exposed concrete and the mezzanine ties into the villa with recycled matai flooring.

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