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The ensemble forming the resort’s main entrance – a door set in a severe stone-clad box, approached along a tree-lined axis – has a temple-like quality.

History with modern luxury: Amanyangyun Shanghai

In its expansive yet judiciously ordered design for a hotel near Shanghai, this Perth- and Singapore-based practice demonstrates its experience in Asia and its ability to integrate ancient and new.

Public / commercial
Imagined as a pure form in the landscape, the design for Bombala Farmhouse captures the minimalist aesthetic of modernist artworks.

First House: Bombala Farmhouse

When a family friend bought a property in southern New South Wales, Penny Collins and Huw Turner, of Collins and Turner, jumped at the chance to design. Here, Penny and Huw reflect on their first house together, a pristine object in the landscape.

Residential
The hotel’s two-storey accommodation villas are positioned radially across the site, with chasms between them framing views of the mountains in one direction and the sea in the other.

‘Necessary and motivating’: The Tiing

On the north coast of Bali, a new hotel responds intuitively to its local context, with accommodation carefully angled to reflect the balance of Balinese life between the mountains and the sea.

Public / commercial
The museum and a cultural park have been built in the Binhai New Area on land reclaimed from Bohai Bay over the past decade.

Shells, sails and upturned hulls: National Maritime Museum of China

China’s first comprehensive maritime museum at once reflects contemporary globalism, the marine history of the local area and a profoundly Australian style of architecture rooted in landscape metaphors.

Public / commercial
While the darkness of the roof cavity appears to extend space vertically, the living room at the back of the house creates a sense of depth.

In praise of shadows: Terrace House near Demachiyanagi

Atelier Luke’s diminutive Japanese-Australian architectural hybrid reconstitutes the fabric of the original townhouse in a respectful yet compelling way, creating spaciousness as much through darkness as through light.

Residential
Chapel and Meditation Room in Portugal by Studio Nicholas Burns.

Sacred ambition: Chapel and Meditation Room

Studio Nicholas Burns

Sited among the millennia-old hills and boulders of northern Portugal, this ensemble of spiritual buildings reflects an ambitious set of intentions – to call upon an elemental sense of time, of seasons and of place.

Public / commercial
Enveloped by a broad gable roof, Porter House is designed across a split-level plan that works with the fall of the site.

Revisited: Porter House

Albert Ross

Located in Warrandyte, Victoria, Porter House launched the practice of young mid-century architect Albert Ross, who had cut his teeth working at celebrated studio Grounds, Romberg and Boyd.

Residential
In time, the home will recede into the rambling landscape –its copper shroud will patina into washes of green and foliage will climb its blackened space frame.

Down by the river: South Yarra House

A quaint walkway stepping up from Melbourne’s Yarra River is the sole means of access to this 1930s brick home, where an extension by AM Architecture fulfils the owners’ desire for a treetop sanctuary.

Residential
On approach, the home’s bold cantilever and porthole window make for a striking composition in the landscape.

Suburban starship: Studley Park House

This home by March Studio in Melbourne navigates the terrain of a sloping site while saluting the mid-century architecture that informed its design.

Residential
The original drill hall, built between 1904 and 1906, has been imaginatively restored and recast as a sophisticated three-storey home.

A dignified return: Drill Hall House

Tobias Partners takes a curatorial hammer to a previously modified drill hall, winding back a gaudy 1990s additions to reinstate the clarity of the original building form and create a reposeful home.

Residential
Balmain Rock by Benn and Penna.

A material experience: Balmain Rock

Taking a restorative approach to the renovation of a sandstone cottage in Sydney’s inner-west, Benn and Penna has composed contemporary materials to pay homage to the quality of the original historic home.

Residential
Thanks to the active repopulation of the ground with local vegetation, the neighbouring reserve will seem to flow into the yard in time.

Sounds of nature: House at Otago Bay

A monolithic home by Topology Studio confidently emerges from the landscape, capturing distant views to kunanyi and forging a connection to the soundscape of its surrounds.

Residential
Comprised of varied shed-like spaces, North Melbourne House is personalized by the texture and colour of everyday objects.

Sheds for sharing: North Melbourne House

Seizing an opportunity to build on an empty neighbouring block, the owners of a worker’s cottage in North Melbourne (with the help of NMBW Architecture Studio) have added a flexible secondary house that will allow them to age in place.

Residential
A painting studio located in the building undercroft is accessed via a double-height landing that opens to the backyard.

Protect and preserve: K & T’s Place

Nielsen Jenkins

Preserving the qualities of one of the few remaining Queenslanders in a South Brisbane neighbourhood, this addition comprises screened outdoor rooms that mitigate the increasingly built-up surrounds.

Residential
The bound pages of books in a study space sit against a transluscent wall. Artwork: Bill Henson

A future ruin in the garden: Almora House

Edged by an established garden and crowned by an undulating concrete roof-form, this home for collectors on Sydney’s North Shore is a carefully cultivated expression in concrete and glass.

Residential
A long gable over the northern wing connects the new living spaces and directs sight lines toward the river.

Verandah living: Brisbane Riverbank House

Set above the bends of the Brisbane River and informed by the material qualities of the existing 1930s cottage, a new brick and timber living wing, terraced garden and lap pool designed by Owen Architecture frame the terrain and capture the timeless spirit of this period home.

Residential
Wrapped in hand- fixed shingles and set on recycled brick plinths, the contemporary pavilions are discrete yet sympathetic to the older home’s character.

Sun catcher: Empire House

Two subtle yet sophisticated pavilions designed by Austin Maynard Architects, delicately stitched to a modest Canberra cottage, honour the interwar character of the home, while connecting it with the outdoors.

Residential
Reminiscent of Japanese techniques, some windows have been replaced with screens of translucent polycarbonate.

Bushland machine: Osborne House

Richard Leplastrier

With a panorama of bush and water as its backdrop, the design for this house, built in 1995, uses materials and details reminiscent of wooden boatbuilding to immerse those who dwell there in the magic of the surrounds.

Residential
The apartment’s spacious floor plan and focus on high quality details imbue it with a sense of timelessness. Artwork: Kayleigh Hetdon.

A different kind of apartment building: Sussex

With an emphasis on design quality and detailing, this home by Powell and Glenn and Mim Design fuses the classic and contemporary to reimagine apartment living as generous and bespoke.

Interiors, Residential
The design scheme prioritizes access to light and views and a connection to the garden. Photograph: Clinton Weaver.

Quality over ostentation: Balmoral House

A series of stacked interconnected volumes that carefully negotiate a tricky wedge-shaped site provided the solution for a client wishing to downsize their home without compromising amenity.

Residential
The roof’s garden overspills green tendrils on one side, and has an integrated strip of photovoltaic panels on the other.

Natural connection: Bundeena Beach House

Grove Architects

On a rocky outcrop at the eastern edge of a secluded beach south of Sydney, this house maximizes opportunities to connect with the spectacular natural environment that surrounds it.

Residential
Erskineville Creature transforms an existing rear garage into a compact granny flat with carport beneath.

The new granny flat

Making a case for “right-sized” housing, three secondary dwelling designs illustrate how granny flats are being reinterpreted as site-responsive and sustainable spaces that alleviate contemporary demands on our suburbs.

Residential
The tight footprint of the existing terrace necessitated an efficient approach to establishing a new spatial order.

Hard worker: Albert Park Terrace

Wellard Architects

This renovation of an inner-Melbourne terrace by Wellard Architects cleverly navigates the site’s constrained footprint, employing key architectural moves that make for an efficient and uplifting family home.

Residential
The addition’s pleated copper facade complements the tones of the existing red brick Federation house.

First house: Clare Cousins Architects

Clad in pleated copper, this addition to a Federation-era house was the first “real” commission for architect Clare Cousins, who reflects on how projects like this one went on to become a staple for the practice.

Residential
The new living and kitchen spaces are connected to the existing cottage by a half-height staircase that leads from the original hallway.

Lessons in scale, proportion and materiality: Albert Villa

Responding to its heritage context and inner-Brisbane neighbourhood, this addition to a historic weatherboard cottage captures vistas from new living spaces arranged around a landscaped courtyard.

Residential
Raising the railway line above ground, as Cox Architecture did for their work along the Caulfield to Dandenong Corridor, provides an opportunity to transform the land beneath.

On track: Level Crossing Removal Project

Cox Architecture, MGS Architects in partnership with Jacobs, Grimshaw Architects

Level crossing removals have been part of Melbourne’s strategy since 1929. With more removals in 2018 than ever before, it is pertinent to assess three of these new projects that strive to extend the public realm.

Landscape / urban
Lighting is generally diffused or reflected back on to walls and ceilings helping to make the venue appear to glow at night.

A public service: Rose Bay Hotel

Tasked with overhauling an iconic 1929 pub in Sydney, Richards Stanisich has combined rich textures and materials with a historical narrative to create an authentic pub experience.

Hospitality, Interiors
A steel frame extends the geometry of the house, mediating between living space and garden terrace. Artwork: Petrina Hicks.

Volume and drama: White House

This crisp addition to a Federation home exuberantly manoeuvres light, space and monochrome materials to masterfully meet the brief.

Residential
Reclaimed land was removed to create an artificial inlet that returns the city to the water’s edge.

The unfinished business of Perth’s Elizabeth Quay

In Perth, the Elizabeth Quay precinct has proven popular but its success depends on “unfinished business.”

Landscape / urban, Public / cultural
The home is an extension of the owner’s personality – she describes it as “earthy and grounded.”

Safe harbour: Vikki’s Place

Curious Practice

In responding to the client’s need for a home that caters to a unique family structure, Curious Practice have achieved a fluid and unfussy home that acts as a refuge in more ways than one.

Residential