Eaglemont House | Kennedy Nolan
Eaglemont, VIC, Australia

James Lyall Smith

Derek Swalwell

Architects
Location
  • Eaglemont, VIC, Australia
Lead Architect
  • Patrick Kennedy
Area
  • 451sqm
Project Year
  • 2017
Photographs
  • Derek Swalwell
Project Team
  • Patrick Kennedy
  • Rachel Nolan
  • Susannah Lempriere
  • Adrianna Hanna
Builder

Eaglemont Residence by Kennedy Nolan is a marvel of contemporary architecture which represents a crowning achievement within the firms already impressive residential  portfolio.

The clients approached Kennedy Nolan with an inspired idea to design a modern residence on the steep slopes of Mount Eagle in the Victorian suburb of Eagleton. This project immediately created several  unique design opportunities for Kennedy Nolan. The natural environment within which the site is located presented superb, uninterrupted views to the north and east. Kennedy Nolan were excited to build their design around this stunning natural beauty and incorporate the context of mature tree canopies on the large adjoining site which would form a beautiful backdrop as well as privacy for the house and garden.

The site was subdivided from the garden of larger mountain property and is therefore relatively compact. Consequently the site also came with a covenant restricting the building envelope specifying that any development must preserve the incredible natural surroundings and the privacy  to adjoining gardens. Strict controls on protecting existing trees and augmenting the forest like canopy of the neighbourhood with new trees also had to be taken into consideration in the design process. All this made for a challenging yet exciting design and build for Kennedy Nolan, a time that would test their reputation for architectural excellence.

The clients envisioned a four bedroom home with a large study, playroom, gym and multi-storage garage. The plan had to resolve conflicting demands of amenity, privacy and aspect and the section had to facilitate an easy ascent and descent through the house and to visually and inherently connect the seven levels – to avoid a feeling of layers and make the vertical relationships as effortless as the horizontal connections.  The result is unexpectedly medieval, a sense that there is always another thing around the corner or down a twist of stairs, and that at every turn there is a new spatial experience or unexpected aspect.

The client’s suggestion of Frank Lloyd Wright as a visual springboard for the house resulted in a deep, floating eave above a ribbon of vertically, articulated casement windows resting on a massive masonry plinth.  Because the elevated site is so exposed, Kennedy Nolan felt it was important to make the building suggestive of a rich domestic interior whilst maintaining a sense of inscrutability – to this end the exterior is intriguing, it hints at the life within, yet remains enigmatic and private.

The Eaglemont Residence is a house designed to be there for a long time, to grow into its surroundings as the tree canopy rises around it and for this reason it is built from robust materials which will improve in appearance as they show signs of age – natural cement render and pre-aged copper cladding.  The interior is contrasting in it’s warmth, texture and emphasis on refinement.  The contrast emphasises a sense of threshold, the sense of a domestic interior as a refuge that is distinct from the garden.  The inhabited external spaces are also distinct – contained, textural, formal and devised as a bridge between the park-like surrounds and the softness of the interior.

This beautiful Eaglemont house is truly a marvel of contemporary architecture and represents a crowning achievement within Kennedy Nolan’s already impressive residential architecture collection. Kennedy Nolan collaborated with Rise Residential to build this stunning design into a beautiful reality.

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