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Architecture: Richmond House

March 9, 2011

Morris Partnership transforms a narrow inner-city site in Richmond, Melbourne into a sanctuary of private spaces and sheltered courtyards.

Responding boldly to the challenges of a tight inner-city site, this home provides a sanctuary amidst the traffic and intensity of its immediate surroundings. The interior is private, quiet and visually exciting. The exterior is assertive in its presence without being dominating, and contributes to the vitality and interest of the street.

The front façade is notched to provide a protected entry and enable views of the Victorian cottage adjacent. Large screens prevent views into the house, and rooms revolve around protective courtyards and decks. Lush gardens – watered by on-site tanks – have been established.

An adjacent peppercorn tree forms a protective veil. A stacked stone wall along the entry path conceals rainwater tanks for the gardens and also holds grasses and orchids.

The house form is simple and rectilinear and creates spaces which flow into each other. The subtle materials palette is deliberately restrained, relying on layering and transparency to create a sense of elusiveness. External finishes penetrate into the building and are highlighted by the selective use of interior colours and finishes. All ‘Isobar’ and ‘Monsoon’ tapware used in the building has been designed by the architect.

Team Architect: Michael Morris

DesignWall Practice

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