New timber-clad pavilion accentuates link between the old and the new
In response to a brief to provide additional accommodation to an existing 1970s Merchant Builder's home, Melbourne-based architecture practice Clare Cousins Architecture + Interior Design designed this self-contained timber pavilion as a retreat from the main house.
The existing single-storey house in Mornington, Victoria, is sited well back on the block with limited access to ocean views. Rather than demolish or renovate the existing building, the practice's approach was to keep this building intact and design a new pavilion to sit adjacent to the original at the front of the site, thereby accentuating the link between old and new.
The pavilion explores the idea of the timber beach shack, where there is a deep connection with its environment experienced from within. The compact (48 sq m) pavilion is connected to the original house via an enclosed fibreglass-clad linking stair structure, which acts as a new entrance to both elements.
This entrance lights up at night, acting as a beacon and welcoming those arriving. Timber decking, raw pine studs and expressed fixings celebrate the modest construction methods of the link. The materials selected have minimal insulative properties, exposing the occupant to the thermal and lighting conditions of the outside.
By using natural materials - with timber construction used holistically both internally and externally - and making the most of the site's landfall, the firm was able to create maximum effect with minimum site impact and cost.
The pavilion was completed this year and includes a new master bedroom wing with a living room and deck for outdoor dining that captures broad views of Port Philip Bay. Planning regulations permit only first-floor structures that are located over car parking or storage areas, so this informed the elevated ‘stilt' design of the addition.
The pavilion and house provide a versatile space for relaxation and entertainment, as comfortable for a couple as for several families.