Trial Bay House

Trial Bay House by HBV Architects won the Robin Boyd Award for Residential Architecture – Houses at the AIA's 2010 National Architecture Awards.

An exceptional house may be one with such calmness and serenity that it is hard to leave. The remodelling and additions to the Trial Bay House have created such a house.

Two existing pavilions have been extensively remodelled and two new pavilions added, with enclosed linking passages.

The dominant new pavilion is strongly geometrical and robustly constructed of angled precast concrete walls, roofs and window sills, forming shutter-like apertures to the view. The view is further enhanced by the quality of light reflected off these shaped concrete reveals. Concrete was selected for its strength and durability, and despite the rigid, strong form succeeds in producing a structure of surprising softness and delicacy.

New windows and door openings have been added to the existing central pavilion, connecting house to landscape. It is not surprising that the immaculate and original details are the result of the architect carefully preparing reams of full-size drawings. The links between the pavilions are similarly carefully detailed, contributing to an ordered sense of calm.

The new pavilion is positioned to capture winter sun and the rebuilt old pergolas act as glazed greenhouses to naturally heat the existing pavilions.

There is a sense of striking originality yet extreme serenity in this understated house.

– Jury citation

Products and materials

Lysaght Klip-Lok.
External Walls
Precast concrete with natural finish; existing blockwork; Sirex paint system.
Internal Walls
Existing masonry walls with hard set plaster; timber studwork walls; low-VOC paints.
Windows and Doors
Celery-top pine jambs, heads and sills; Western red cedar sliding shutters; celery-top pine internal doors. Irodori sudare reed blinds.
Concrete; tiles.
Megabay OMNYX3 spotlight and Zimano downlights; Fagurhult sidelight.
Miele oven, cooktop, microwave and dishwasher; Qasair rangehood; Liebherr fridge; Weatherfoil stainless steel sink; Rogerseller Midi sink mixer.
Rogerseller Pino Architect semi-recessed vanity basin, Midi basin mixer and shower mixer; Kaldewei bath; Duravit toilet; Caroma cistern; Madinoz bathroom accessories.
In-slab heating; Cheminees fireplace.
Stonework by Apollo Stone; joinery by Crescon Joinery and Bauhaus Kitchens.


Design architect
James Jones, Architectus
Architectural practice
HBV Architects
Hobart, Hobart, Tas, Australia
Project Team
Petrina Moore, Scott Christensen, Helen Daly
Builder Bennett Construction
Building surveyor Peter Angus
Environmental consultant Steve Watson
Lighting Southern Lighting
Mechanical and electrical engineer Tasmanian Building Services
Structural engineer Gandy and Roberts Consulting Engineers
Site Details
Location Trial Bay,  Tas,  Australia
Site type Rural
Building area 450 m2
Project Details
Status Built
Design, documentation 12 months
Construction 12 months
Category Residential
Type New houses


Awarded Project

Published online: 30 Jun 2011
Words: National Architecture Awards Jury 2010
Images: Ray Joyce


Architecture Australia, November 2010

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