Design Tour: Cove House – Coomera Island, Australia

The Local Project (December 20, 2022) – By creating a sub-tropical modern architecture garden home, Justin Humphrey Architects employs concrete, timber, dark tones and green life to respond to the client’s brief.

Video timeline: 00:00 – Introduction to the Extraordinary Garden Home 00:11 – The Architect’s Favourite Aspects 00:40 – A Queensland Location 01:08 – The Well-Travelled Clients and their Desire for Sub-Tropical Modern Architecture 01:26 – A Strong Form and Sense of Materiality 01:48 – A Walkthrough of the Home and its Materials 02:29 – The Spine of the Home 03:00 – The Owners 03:20 – A Response to Natural Light 03:39 – Accommodating for Entertaining 03:56 – Implementing Passive Design Principles 04:50 – Seeing the Clients Grow into the Home

Desiring a family home that was equal parts building and garden, the clients needed a home that could provide privacy and areas for entertaining. Handling the combination of public and private spaces with ease, the architect has also challenged the traditional entrance sequence of the home. From its exterior, Cove House strikes a formidable presence, yet with its singular floating plane roof and plant life,

Cove House establishes itself as a modern architecture garden home. To create a modern architecture garden home, the architect has offset the concrete and dark tones of the exterior with warm timber battens to soften the entrance. Starting the house tour, the green landscape spine runs down the centre of the home, separating the public entry and the private living spaces. Additionally, the green spine guides guests towards the rear of the home, where the living and entertainment spaces are situated.

Contributing to the interior design of the Cove House, concrete and timber are combined to establish a flowing effect from outside in, honouring the client’s appreciation of climate-responsive materials and architecture. Answering the client’s love of boating and water, Cove House embraces open plan living and joins with the natural reserve, Coomera Island, which sits opposite the home. By opening the rear glass doors, the owners can increase the entertaining size onto the back deck and the passion pit – a curved lounging area that embraces outside living.

Providing the clients with a space to grow into, the modern architecture garden home also offers privacy from its neighbours on either side. Following critical passive design principles for the modern architecture garden home, the large roof-span provides wide-set eaves that protect from rain, provide deep shade during summer and curate cool breezes through the home. Additionally, the natural stone floor and concrete were employed as a thermal mass element to help regulate the home’s temperature all year round. As the house ages, Justin Humphrey Architects has specifically chosen the material palette to influence an alternative approach to address the natural climate setting.

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