This collection of seven residences arranged over four levels offers the indulgence of a luxury home paired with the convenience of apartment living. Comprised of six condominiums across the lower three floors topped with a penthouse, the development imbues a sophisticated feel into its South Yarra setting. Taking cues from Englefield House – a 19th-century mansion that once presided over the area – the sculptural building adds to its upscale neighborhood located just four kilometers from central Melbourne.
Each generously proportioned residence features windows integrated into three of out four of its walls allowing for natural light, elevated ceilings and large interior spaces. The designers considered how each apartment will be used with inhabitants’ daily habits. Emotive elements of arriving at home each day have been expertly tuned in a more compact version of arriving at a larger family house—with a lobby, porte-cochere and secure basement parking providing a safe and inviting transition. With a focus on personal service, the private lobby houses seven individual valet stores for the secure storage of groceries, parcels and dry cleaning.
The exterior aesthetic is echoed in elements apropos to the apartment interiors, such as the outlines of the joinery and the monolithic form of the fireplace at the heart of each living room. Detailing and solid timber joinery throughout each home—seen in vanities, headboards and generous open shelving—help to define space and provide functional storage and display opportunities, while allowing daylight to spill through.
The multi-house complex mature palette favors darker, richer tones. Materials include deep timbers, natural stone and aged bronze accents that are textured and remain true to their inherent qualities. Soft and tactile, these surfaces are inviting to the touch.
The landscape has been conceived as an additional material, seamlessly intertwining the greenery with metal and stone. Natural Australian bluestone offset by deep windows reveals a rich and textural frontage to Chambers Street, while lush vines grow down out of their planters and embrace the façade. From every room, there is a constant connection to greenery, with bay windows and terraces opening out to the green surrounds. Standing seam cladding grounds and caps the building in a continuous line.
Thoughtfully designed to maximize passive sustainability, each apartment has three aspects to daylight and air ventilation. Window openings were choreographed to ensure privacy and minimize heat load into the living spaces.
Fully integrated state-of-the-art home automation allows owners to customize their environment from anywhere in the world. Lighting, temperature and shading can all be controlled via an app-based smart system.