Domestic bliss – 2020 Houses Awards Shortlist

Celebrating its first decade, the Houses Awards is one of Australia’s most highly regarded awards programs, showcasing the best architect-designed homes in the country. This year, we are delighted to see three shortlisted projects featuring our fireplaces.

Nominated in the New House Over 200m2 Shortlist, Pandanus by Sparks Architects sits directly opposite the pristine dunes of Peregian Beach on the Sunshine Coast. Befitting its beautiful surrounds, Pandanus invites the outside in wherever possible with gigantic floor to ceiling windows and retractable doors, making the most of spectacular ocean vistas. With this house, Sparks Architects have so cleverly framed the surrounding views, creating indoor and outdoor spaces that can be utilised no matter the season. We are thrilled to see one of Oblica’s most enduringly popular fireplaces – the Gyrofocus – suspended in the prow of this home’s living room, majestically stretching out toward the sea.

A project shortlisted in two categories at this year’s awards is Grant Pirrie House by Virginia Kerridge Architect. This project is a major refurbishment of a previously renovated residential industrial warehouse, which won architect Graham Jahn a Robin Boyd Award in 1999.

Reimagining this space 20 years later, the architects have seamlessly reformatted Grant Pirrie House to suit the owner’s new preferences. Responding to the grittiness of the building’s inner-city setting, and paying homage to the original design, they have created something extraordinary. And what better accessory to warm such a dramatic space than one of our most unique fireplaces, Bathyscafocus Hublot.

Finally, Breezway House by David Boyle Architect, another beachside dream perched between pine and fig trees on the NSW coast. Already shortlisted in this year’s Australian Interior Design Awards, Breezeway House also finds itself nominated in the Houses Awards Sustainability category.

Not only beautifully designed, but sustainably built, Breezeway House prioritises shade, shelter and connection to landscape above all. The breezeway of this home acts to thermally regulate the house and provides access to flexible bedroom spaces that open directly to lush gardens. A fantastically efficient way to keep the home temperate year-round. And when the temperature drops, there’s always the Nelson double-sided fireplace to provide ample warmth.

Three exquisitely designed homes from a field of over 150 shortlisted projects, the Houses Awards jury will have a tough time deciding who will take out top honours! We’ll be cheering on our favourites, and all this year’s nominees, when the winners are announced in a virtual awards ceremony on Friday 31 July. We can’t help but be a little bias after all!

Photography by Brett Boardman & Nicholas Watt

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