• COCONUT WELLS Broome, Western Australia | 2010

    This project is located on a 4.5 Hectare beachfront site in the western Australian pearling town of Broome.The site is entered through a grove of mango trees before rising to a central knoll, where the largest of 3 pavilions, containing living, dining, kitchen, office, bathroom and laundry, overlooks the planted roofs of the bedroom pavilions below and the Indian Ocean beyond.

    A stair descends from the main pavilion, past a swimming pool to a path through tropical gardens leading first to the main bedroom pavilion and then onto the secondary bedroom pavilion before continuing to a lagoon, sand dunes and the beach.

    All pavilions are constructed from off-form reinforced concrete on a 1.2 metre modular grid with 400mm x 400mm square concrete columns located at 6 metre centres in the north-south direction, with a 12 metre clear span in the east-west direction. Large cantilevered roofs on the north and south together with colonnaded verandahs to the east and west protect the interior from the tropical sun and monsoonal rain, while 3 metre high aluminium framed sliding glass doors allow the pavilions to transform into large outdoor rooms, with hollow concrete block screens providing privacy between pavilions, while allowing sea breezes to pass through the interiors.

    There was a desire to provide timeless, low maintenance materials to withstand the extreme climate of this region. All floors, verandahs and external terraces are of polished concrete with internal walls being white painted cement rendered concrete block. Bathrooms and joinery units are treated as free standing elements within the open plan bedrooms, with the main bedroom having an additional external bathroom on a landscaped terrace overlooking the ocean.

    The house is fully self sufficient, using bore water for drinking and irrigation in the dry season, as well as harvesting water from the planted roofs, which also provide significant insulation to the thermal mass of the concrete structure.A solar array with a battery storage shed provide for the electrical needs, while sewerage and grey water are treated in an enviro-cycle system before being used for additional irrigation to the gardens.

    The extremely robust structure of the house not only provides cool, tranquil spaces from which to enjoy the exotic environment of Australia’s north west but also provides protection from severe tropical cyclones during the wet season.

You are using an out of date web browser. To view this website please use a modern web browser