Country / Gadigal
Monolithic and elemental, Bronte House evokes the epic grandeur of its surrounding cliff landscape in hose-out casual beach-side living.
Built / 2022
Builder / Robert Plumb Build
Landscape Architect / Dangar Barin Smith
Photographer / Rory Gardiner
Awards / AIA NSW New House Commendation 2023, Houses New House over 200sqm Commendation 2023
Formerly a quarry, Bronte House is located on the southern bank of the Bronte gully on a shared elevated walk. Steeply pitched, it falls six stories in height from its southern to northern boundaries and is tightly sandwiched by neighbours to the East and West. The topography affords beautiful oblique beach and ocean views to the north-east, and suburban district views directly across the valley.
Bronte House simultaneously responds to the monumental natural landscape and the parochial suburban character of the place through its composition; a solid mass of brickwork from which internal spaces have been carved, eroded and sculpted – as if by sun, wind and time.
Taking its cues from Bronte’s iconic cliffs and pool, this new build is a considered study in urban beachside living. Achieving privacy, light effects and thermal comfort with playful internal volumetrics, this family home feels restrained and quiet; a calm oasis amidst this popular and densely built area.
The house has a clear and legible organisational strategy that supports passive thermal comfort and resolution of structural expression and functionality to suit contemporary multi-generational living. Densely planned service spaces are arranged along East and West boundaries, protecting the internal volumes from heat load, and creating deep, dramatic bands of privacy between close neighbours.
In this house, interior design and architecture are intrinsically connected. Structure and finish are one. Sustainability is built into the DNA. It is raw, completely stripped back of artifice with a hose-out beachside casualness that belies the rigour, care and attention in the resolution of the detail.