Chiverton Architects | Ivanhoe House

Ivanhoe House

Through a past client I met the owners of an older weatherboard house in Ivanhoe. The original house had charm but like so many older buildings it didn’t function well in a modern context. Rooms were all separated from each other, kitchens and bathrooms were a bit run down and the house had no relationship to the amazing site it was on which ran steeply down to a creek and park.

The brief was to design a new house that could be built in two phases. Phase one would be an extension to the original weatherboard house and would include a kitchen, sitting/ dinning room, laundry, pantry, master bedroom, walk-in-robe and an en-suite. Phase two would be the demolition of the original house with a replacement including two bedrooms, a study, a second living area, a garage and a studio.

The client designs beautiful, modern, organic pieces of jewelry and she had a great appreciation for design especially Scandinavian design. It was an absolute joy to sit with her and go through stacks of cool books and discuss what might work on the site. The design drew on inspiration from modernist houses from Scandinavia, especially houses of the 60’s built when there was a big government push for architect designed modest housing. The site also dictated what we could do because of it’s fall, rooms had to step down the site to maintain a connection to the land. In the end we chose to have a central ‘spine’ corridor with rooms and courtyards to either side.

Another large component of the brief was for the house to be sustainable. This permeates the project and the house includes many active and passive systems to ensure that it functions well, these include: Solar passive heating, cross ventilation, high levels on natural light, double glazing, over insulation, 5KW solar panel system, solar hot water, 8000L rainwater tanks, energy efficient lighting, hydronic heating, evaporative cooling, internal clothes drying racks and water efficient fixtures. It also uses highly sustainable materials throughout.

The house looks great and feels wonderful to be in. It is relaxed, light filled with a fantastic outlook to the North and West. Plus it was on budget!



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