The classic beach houses of '50s and '60s have a laidback charm and unpretentious simplicity that's easy to love. This family in Perth's beachside suburb of Scarborough wanted a home that reminded them of the Scarborough they used to know. The result, Nola Avenue House, designed by Philip Stejskal Architecture is a modern family home which takes its cues from beach houses of the past...
The home is set around a courtyard facing the street. This helps to funnel sea breezes and brings more north light into the home.
Entering the home on this middle level, you arrive in an open-plan living area. A bay window with window seat frames views distant rooftop views or, once you get a little closer, a view down to the pool. A raked ceiling over the living area with skylights lets beautiful natural light into the home and creates a dramatic sense of space.
A terrace overhangs the lower level and is perfect for alfresco dining. Shutters open to let in breezes, light and views or can be closed off to feel more like a traditional room.
"Below, a family room cuts into the dune and opens out toward the backyard", explains the architect, Philip Stejskal. With access to its own bathroom, the family room could also be used as a guest room or teenager's retreat if needs be.
The central stair connection all three levels is a centrepiece, using timber battens to allow light and breezes through, while also creating a distinct spacial divider. The connect all three levels, there's provision for a future lift, again designed for flexibility if and when the family's needs change.
The top level is dedicated to the main bedroom and study. The bedroom overlooks the backyard and pool with a balcony popping out on top of the terrace and surrounded by green roof. The study opens onto a deck with stairs leading to a rooftop viewing platform which takes in beautiful views of the Indian Ocean.
The materials both inside and out reflect the simplicity and understated practicality of those classic beach houses. Fibre cement, timber battens, galvanised iron, plywood and exposed concrete all combine to create a hard-wearing home that will stand the test of time (if not get better with age).
Philip Stejskal Architecture has created a carefully considered family home which is practical and robust; a home that can adapt to its family's needs and which feels the beach houses of the past while serving all the wants and needs of a modern home. Living here would feel like an endless holiday.
Nola Avenue House Ground Level
Nola Avenue House Lower Level
Nola Avenue House Upper Level