City Beach House

City Beach, Western Australia

What do you build where the city meets the sea? A home that holds back the suburbs and embraces the beauty of the dunes.

The owners of this property loved its location on the border between the city and the beach, and wanted a real connection with the dune landscape of their home. A busy family with three teenage kids, they also wanted a house with an outdoor lifestyle that they could enjoy together.
Rather than building out to dominate the corner block, we inverted the angle in a ‘boomerang’ design which instead hugs the eastern and southern edges of the lot. This opens the house to the northern aspect and connects the occupants in a softer way with the street and beach environment. This shape also works as a barrier to hold back the suburbs behind the house as the front embraces the ocean sky and the native dunes. The two-level design features cantilevered balconies that allow the family to relax in the ocean air, or share the garden, pool and outside living spaces from different areas of the home. The garden, alfresco and pool are the central focus of family life, so the ground level has a feeling of being arranged around them.
We used natural dry stone walling, WA Blackbutt and Pacific Teak to create a relaxed beachside feeling, with a timber clad master bedroom and a stone island fireplace bringing something of the raw natural surroundings inside. The home is designed in a series of ‘platforms’ at different levels, to capture a range of different views. Slot windows in the western side of the house allow the family to enjoy WA’s unique ocean vistas and bathe the central areas in a warm, diffused light, while still protecting the house from the harsh afternoon sun.