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Finalists in annual cubby house design competition announced

Jan 17, 2018
  • Article by Online Editor

Youth homelessness prevention organisation Kids Under Cover has released the first images of the five cubbies competing for the title of Australia’s best cubby. The cubbies will be auctioned as part of the annual Cubby House Challenge at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show in March 2018.

Five creative cubby houses are now being built by some of Melbourne’s leading architects and builders who are fighting it out to create Australia’s cubby house of the year for 2018. This follows a record level of expressions of interest received from across the country. The wildly different cubbies, which include a vibrant blue head, a log cabin and a dream catcher, will be open for inspection and auctioned at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show in March 2018. All funds raised from the auction of the expertly designed cubbies will go towards Kids Under Cover’s youth homelessness prevention initiatives.

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Heads Up, by BuildHer Collective

Five of Melbourne’s leading real estate agents have signed on to sell the cubbies, from listing and marketing the cubbies to the final fall of the hammer at the annual twilight auction. This year’s design and auction pairings are:

  • ‘The Dream Catcher’ – Figurehead Construction in collaboration with architect Bayley Ward, represented by Luke Banitsiotis of Woodards
  • Becon Constructions and Watson Young’s ‘Rocky Road’ (pictured in banner image) to be represented by Harry Li of iSell Group
  • Buildher Collective, Beirin Projects andBellemo & Cat’s collaboration ‘Heads Up’, to be represented by Sam Rigopoulos of Jellis Craig
  • Porter Davis’ ‘The Eyrie’will be represented by Glen Coutinho of RT Edgar
  • The District Docklands ‘Block Party’to be represented by Tom Roberts of Nelson Alexander

The selected building and architectural teams have designed cubbies that create a fun, inviting and creative space for children, while also looking at environmental issues, and reusing, recycling and upcycling materials where possible.

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The Eyrie by Porter Davis

Kids Under Cover’s expert judging panel will assess the cubbies on-site at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show, and award them across a range of categories including Best Interior Design, Most Imaginative/Interactive Cubby and Best Architectural Cubby.

This year’s judging panel includes Peter Maddison, architect and host of Lifestyle Channel’s Grand Designs AustraliaShaynna Blaze, interior designer and judge on Channel 9’s The BlockEmily Power, Editor of Domain; and Ben and Andy, former contestants on Channel 9’s The Block. A group of local school children will join the judging panel to put the cubbies to the test and vote for the Kids’ Choice Award.

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The Dreamcatcher by Figurehead Construction

The real estate agents are gearing up to begin their marketing campaigns, drawing in potential buyers for each of their cubbies in the hopes of winning the auction and raising the most amount of money for the organisation.

Kids Under Cover CEO Jo Swift said that she is impressed with how deliberately each of the building and design teams has stepped up to the 2018 competition.

“This year’s Cubby House Challenge is looking to be even bigger and better, and we’re hoping to break the incredible records set by our teams in 2017,” said CEO Jo Swift. “The cubbies are a major feature at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show each year, and this year’s weird and wonderful designs will be no different.”

Real estate agent Sam Rigopoulos of Jellis Craig is coming back for his seventh Cubby House Challenge and is looking to add to the more than $115,000 he has already raised for the organisation.

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Block Party by the District Docklands

“I’ve had three kids of my own since I started working with Kids Under Cover as an auctioneer for these spectacular cubbies, and through them my involvement has taken on a new meaning,” Mr Rigopoulos said. “Even though it’s a small part of the process, I am proud to offer my marketing and auctioneering skills to Kids Under Cover to help maximise their efforts in keeping young people safe with a roof over their heads.”

Jo Swift invited all parties interested in purchasing one of Australia’s Best Cubbies to register their details for the twilight auction and be in on the action live at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show.

“Beyond the creative designs and the fun spaces that are being developed for a few lucky young people, our aim is to raise a record-breaking amount of money in order to help young people who are at risk of homelessness,” Jo Swift said. “Our goal in 2018 is to beat the total auction record of $92,500 for the cubbies. With the help and generosity of our donors, we can change the lives of young people who are in need.”

For further information or to register for the auction, see cubbyhousechallenge.org.au.

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