The design of Barwon Heads Beach House is a new strategic approach to the use of timber in contemporary architecture. Timber is used on the building in a precise and tailored approach. Externally it has been used as a highlight cladding, e.g. garage entry block, chimney stack, all eaves linings, sheltered front door and landscape fences. These elements provide a visual softness to the project and act to punctuate and extenuate layers and zones within the design. Careful attention has also been paid to ensuring that all timber surfaces are easily accessible for future maintenance.
In order to maximize the visual impact of the tailored use of the timber a rough sawn finish has been adopted in order to emphasize the natural warmth of the timber against the planar neutral elements of render and steel. Timber surfaces used on the exterior of the building visually carry through onto the internal surfaces in an act to visually extent the internal spaces, and provide a link between the interior environments and the coastal landscape surrounding the building.
Internally timber has been used on all surfaces in the living rooms of the house. In order to overcome the acoustic drawbacks of all hard surfaces, Barwon Heads Beach House has adopted a timber lined acoustic ceiling. The white ribbed painted timber batten walls provide a fresh visual break between the stained Blackbutt timber floor and ceiling. In order to add diversity to the interiors palette a feature timber veneer has been added to the joinery elements.
Barwon Heads Beach House exhibits an extensive and varied use of timber. The project relies on the strategic and innovative use of timber to connect the building back to the harsh coastal environment in which it sits.