Inspired by the History of Black Rock – Lumiere by Lowe Living
Black Rock, VIC, Australia
Taking inspiration from the naval history of Half Moon Bay, Lumiere Black Rock, the latest development from Lowe Living, sees six luxury apartments that pay elegant homage to their Bayside context.
Shipwrecks may not be a typical source of architectural inspiration, but in designing Lowe Living’s Lumiere Black Rock in Bayside Melbourne, project architects Warren and Mahoney chose to incorporate references to the wreckage of HMVS Cerberus. A naval ship that protected Melbourne and Port Phillip Bay prior to World War II, today the shipwreck serves as a breakwater and favoured scuba diving site in Black Rock.
Shipwrecks may not be a typical source of architectural inspiration, but in designing Lowe Living’s Lumiere Black Rock in Bayside Melbourne, project architects Warren and Mahoney chose to incorporate references to the wreckage of HMVS Cerberus.
Lowe Living Managing Director Tim Lowe explains that responding to the project’s context is of the utmost importance. “Our objective is always to create an architectural legacy for the local area. For Lumiere, this meant Warren and Mahoney were tasked with ensuring our clients’ new homes in Black Rock would stand the test of time,” he says. “We wanted Lumiere Black Rock to be a true reflection of its breathtaking surroundings. The Lumiere residences showcase the best of Bayside living and evidence that multi-residential developments can be uniquely timeless, architecturally inspired, light-filled and private.”
According to principal architect Nick Deans, this strong connection to the local context of the project is central to Warren and Mahoney’s broader approach to design. “The heart of our design process is an understanding of identity and place, so with every design, we begin by researching the location and community,” he says. It is this collaborative approach and partnership, that saw the development garner strong community support and pass through the famously stringent Bayside Council with, itself no mean feat.
The influence of both Cerberus and of the coastal setting are felt throughout, informing the distinguished luxury of the two and three-bedroom dwellings. The street-facing elevation comprises travertine cladding on the second storey, with smoothed stone surfaces at the ground floor and street level. In doing so, the facade mirrors that of the Red Bluff cliffs above Black Rock beach, where textured cliff faces give way to rock that has been smoothed over thousands of years at the waterline.
A naval ship that protected Melbourne and Port Phillip Bay prior to World War II, today the shipwreck serves as a breakwater and favoured scuba diving site in Black Rock.
The stone walls of the facade double as a fence that screens the outside world, offering a high level of privacy. Given the influence of the surrounding natural landscape, it was a logical decision to partner with one of Australia’s most celebrated landscape architects, Jack Merlo. In the private realm created within the encompassing stone walls, garden beds and overhanging trellises create a sense of calm, simultaneously providing personal sanctuary and an entertainer’s dream.
Stepping inside, a muted, coastally-inspired palette prevails, providing a sense of calm throughout the apartments. The north-facing orientation maximises natural light, which is emphasised by the abundant glazing that blurs the boundaries between indoor living spaces and outside entertainment areas. In the kitchen, curved stone facades and rounded kitchen islands dramatically evoke the curvature of the shipwrecked turrets and serve as a focal point for family and guests alike. Gunmetal tapware and engineered oak floors similarly offer discrete nods to the naval aesthetic. In the bathrooms, striking lines accentuate every angle, as gently curved basins and mirrors speak to the broader design language throughout.
Lowe Living Managing Director Tim Lowe explains that responding to the project’s context is of the utmost importance.
The vision conceived by Lowe Living with Warren and Mahony has now been realised thanks to Lowe Create, bringing Lumiere Black Rock to life. “It is a joy to see the vision become a reality,” says Tim. “The construction team have completed the project with their signature approach to meticulous attention to detail and bespoke design artistry.” With the completion of the project, Lumiere Black Rock by Lowe Living takes its place as an exemplar of contemporary luxury – enriched by the inspiration taken from the beauty of its coastal setting.