The Bondi Penthouse
An iconic Sydney location, a serendipitous discovery and a whole lot of luck came together to produce this amazing rooftop home
What we love most about this home: The living room ceiling (check it out below)
The owner of this home on Bondi’s Campbell Parade owned 2 of the 8 apartments in the block. When looking for a place to dry his clothes one day, he popped his head through a hatch in the roof and saw something that got him very excited – a perfectly flat rooftop without a thing on it.
This small discovery was just the first piece of a puzzle, which has seen an old building rejuvenated, with the addition of a modern rooftop penthouse. Architect Kevin Ng of Brian Myerson Architects (BMA) explains that a number of things fell into place.
“We wanted this project to have a clear distinction between new and old. When we met with the council’s heritage officer he said, ‘We don’t want to see this building. Do whatever you have to do, we just don’t want to see it.’ That led to our decision to make it white, in a metallic finish.”
The owner being a builder and developer who has worked on commercial and civic buildings, decided to use the white metal sheet cladding common in these buildings, but in a new way.
On the living area ceiling, the sheeting was literally slotted together like a jigsaw, with the aim of reducing waste, pulling the external cladding and aesthetic indoors and creating interest through dynamic angles.
Within the ceiling joints the architects used strip lighting – another commercial element brought into the residential.
“There’s a lot of angles in the building,” Kevin says. “It was our idea to distinguish the new building from the existing; the sliding doors were angled, there were angled lines within the elevations and there’s angled patterns within the façade.”
The single column in the living area has been clad in the same metal sheeting, while also housing the fireplace – essentially concealing its structural purpose.
The spiral staircase was lowered into place with a crane through the hole for the skylight (a tight fit with only a few centimetres to spare).
The sale of the rooftop space provided the funds to improve the existing building – much to the relief of long-term occupants.
This beautiful, modern home sits quietly atop its older counterpart, without being overbearing. Barely visible from the street, the home still takes advantage of one of the most treasured Sydney views – Bondi Beach.
Brian Meyerson Architects
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