Endorsed by

Point Piper Boathouse by Andrew Burges Architects

Part of a larger multiresidential project, this boathouse provides a direct yet elegant connection to Seven Shillings Beach.

Like the dot at the bottom of an exclamation mark, this boathouse by Andrew Burges finishes off a two-apartment development on Seven Shillings Beach. But it also sits discretely as a building in its own right. The project is, figuratively at least, a boathouse, though it is very much a space for people rather than boats – a civil response that claims the waterfront back for people to use and enjoy. It isn’t a pavilion like the neighbouring boathouses that dot the bay, it is more a part of the landscape – a sophisticated cave that hasn’t been so much built as carved out of the sandstone.

A day bed is carved out of the stone wall, allowing appreciation of the view of the bay via a vertical slot window.

A day bed is carved out of the stone wall, allowing appreciation of the view of the bay via a vertical slot window.

Image: Ross Honeysett

A triumvirate of concrete, timber and limestone lines the interior of the boatshed. The plan is a basic rectangle – close to square. A daybed sits off to the side with a calibrated slot window that sets the eye off down towards the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It would have been a temptation to focus the entire boathouse towards this direction, but Burges shows a deft hand in assembling the parts of this space: the boathouse itself is very much something you find, and the different views from it are treated in the same way. A case in point here is how the vertical elements of timber screens are organized at varied angles to open up different aspects across Double Bay, up to Clark Island and beyond to the CBD, depending on where you are located in the space.

Again, the cave metaphor springs to mind in the bathroom space as a sliver of light creeps down the face of a five-metre-high light shaft that could have been weathered out of the cliff itself. Returning back into the main space you notice the exposed concrete soffit, which folds up at the rear of the volume before it meets the wall to create an alcove for lighting. This also blurs the edge of the space in a way that defies the substance of the material palette that is on show.

Materially, there is no doubt the project collects and assembles its elements elegantly; however, the true beauty of the boathouse is in its section. As high as it is deep, it is this element of the design that, despite its diminutive size in plan, enables the boatshed to exude a feeling of relaxed generosity – a worthy outcome for a project of any size.

Products and materials

Roofing
In situ concrete.
External walls
100 mm Random sandstone; in situ concrete wall with rough-sawn oregon formwork finish.
Internal walls
Artedomus Isernia limestone, sandblasted, and Aretusa Light, gritblasted.
Windows and doors
Artarmon Joinery rosewood timber door frames and screens, Woodmans Cladcoat.
Flooring
Australian Architectural Hardwood recycled grey ironbark flooring, Synteko natural oil.
Lighting
Arne Jacobsen AJ wall light.
Kitchen
Honed black granite benchtop; American Walnut timber veneer joinery; Liebherr underbench fridge; Miele Combi oven.
Bathroom
Rogerseller Subway wall-hung toilet, Soho Round Cafe shower rose and Tonic Motion shower mixer; Candana Boyd Alternatives copper basin.

Credits

Architect
Andrew Burges Architects
Surry Hills, Sydney, NSW, Australia
Project Team
Andrew Burges, Jeremy Bull, Celia Carroll, Louise Lovmand, Cameron Donald, Joanna Butler
Consultants
Builder ANT Building
Engineer Meinhardt Group
Joinery Glen Ryan & Associates
Landscaping Dangar Group
Site details
Location Seven Shillings Beach,  Sydney,  NSW,  Australia
Number of stories 2
Site type Suburban
Site area 500 m2
Building area 61 m2
Category Residential buildings
Type Houses, Residential
Project Details
Status Built
Design, documentation 5 months
Construction 24 months

Source

Project

Published online: 8 Mar 2012
Words: David Welsh
Images: Ross Honeysett

Issue

Houses, December 2011

Related topics

More projects

See all
Aligned with a shift in floor level, a narrow skylight marks the point at which the addition and existing house adjoin. Artwork: Jai Vasicek. Simple wishes: Lansdowne Crescent

A request for increased amenity rather than more square metres was the impetus behind this deceptively compact addition to a period Hobart home by Preston …

The floating roof ties together the home’s concrete and timber elements and gives lightness to its form. Tropical textures: Cove House

A thoughtful response to its unique setting and climate in the Gold Coast’s Sanctuary Cove, this house, by Justin Humphrey Architect, embodies principles of subtropical …

Sliding panels and bifold doors allow the interior to return to its original singular volume. Artwork: Elliott “Numskull” Routledge. ‘Changing the performance’: Camperdown Warehouse

Fusing concepts inherent in furniture design and architecture, this conversion of a former motor vehicle factory in Sydney serves as a prototype for a novel …

On the northern verandah, netted hammock seats lean in unison with the architecture, appearing to float over and into the landscape. Trademark lyricism: Stradbroke House

Well versed in designing for the tropical Queensland climate, the Gabriel and Elizabeth Poole and Tim Bennetton have collaborated to deliver an exuberant South Stradbroke …

Most read

Latest on site

Calendar