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Around The World
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5 Retail Spaces That Reset The Bar For Design

In a time in which the digital retail environment threatens the survival of some brick and mortar stores, many are turning to the power of design to become so much more than your average store. Destinations in themselves, these five spaces bring something special to the region’s retail landscape.

Infinity Spa by Space Popular

Because of Thailand’s limited geographic sprawl, the vast majority of its shopfronts are designed with a cookie-cutter approach to achieve one defining feature – utility. Here, designers are faced with a pretty big challenge to inject a measure of unpredictability into what are otherwise very predictable spaces. This was the brief given to local design firm Space Popular in its reimagining of Bangkok’s Infinity Spa, spread across two traditional Thai shophouses. “These concrete shells all share the same layout, sizes, proportions and materials; being the most generic spatial typology in the city where all kinds of programs are stuffed,” says Space Popular architects, Lara Lesmes and Fredrik Hellberg.

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Photography courtesy Space Popular. Read the full story here.


Patom Organic Living by Nitaprow

Patom Organic Living Nitaprow cc Ketsiree Wongwan nature

The brief for Patom Organic Living was straightforward and this building offers an elegantly simple (but not simplistic) response. Nita Yuvaboon and Prow Puttorngul, the founders of architecture practice Nitaprow were asked to create a largely transparent space that functioned as a showroom and a café for Patom’s organic body care products whilst maximising outdoor green space to accommodate a weekend farmers’ market and workshops for sustainable living.

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Photography by Ketsiree Wongwan. Read the full story here.


Aēsop Pitt Street by Snøhetta

Aēsop Pitt Street by Snøhetta

At 250 square metres, this is Aēsop’s largest store globally. Long and narrow, the journey from the front of the store to the back is a carefully constructed narrative that Aēsop and Snøhetta conjointly developed. The bulk of the product display, including the standalone testing basins, is at the front of the store. As you progress there is an open space that during business hours offers breathing space and reprieve, while out of hours it offers a breakout space for in store events. Along the sidewall in the third quarter of the store there are three stand-alone vanities for special treatments and finally along the back wall – to mirror the front – there is seating in the form of an amphitheatre that protrudes from the wall in one continuous motion.

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Photography courtesy of Aēsop. Read the full story here.


Cult Curated Edition by Infinite Design Studio

For a limited time only - from July through to October 2019, to be precise - Sydney’s Queen’s Court was home to the Cult Curated Edition pop-up store. Curated by Infinite Design Studio’s principal and lead designer, Michelle Macarounas, the pop-up showcased an inimitable selection of furniture, lighting and accessories from international and local brands including Poltrona Frau, Carl Hansen, HAY, Gubi, &tradition, NAU, Zanotta and Cappellini, alongside artworks from Olsen Gallery, M Contemporary and Otomys and fabrics from Kvadrat and South Pacific Fabric.

Read the full story here.


UNSW Bookshop by SJB

SJB Writes A New Chapter For UNSW Bookshop | bookshelf wall

A good bookstore is more than the sum of its books. It’s an inviting hangout; a comfortable environment to linger; and an inspiring place to share and gain knowledge. Wanting to write a new chapter for UNSW Bookshop, the UNSW Development Team engaged SJB to transform the aging store into a dynamic retail space that encourages people to spend time in a setting that fosters ideas and discussion. “UNSW had a vision for the bookshop to be a beacon; the campus honeypot,” says Monica Edwards, Senior Associate, SJB.

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Photography by Anson Smart. Read the full story here.

ARC - Feature

A Tasmanian Holiday Home To Come Down For Air

The Boathouse, designed and built by My Build, is the great Tasmanian getaway for a globe-trotting client. He wanted a holiday house where friends from overseas and the mainland could come down for air, and he wanted the vibe of luxury retreat while still capturing the essence of Tasmania. The house is located on the bank of the Tamar River in northern Tasmanian, once home to a thriving shipbuilding industry. “To this day a slipway is carved into the volcanic stone and can be seen at low tide as well as two timber sleepers,” says My Build Homes director, Murray Griffiths. Wanting to pay tribute to this, My Build designed a simple gabled form, like a boathouse, rotated 90 degrees to the shore.  

The two-bedroom house coexists with the architectural vernacular of the boatsheds and apple orchards along the riverbank.

  The two-bedroom house coexists with the architectural vernacular of the boatsheds and apple orchards along the riverbank, as well as the geography of the river. The rear is grounded to the slope by a footing and slab, (overcoming the poor soil and potential landslip), while the front is elevated on a steel columns and piers to overlook the river. The design team used dark, natural and industrial materials to help the building recede into the surroundings of “The Natural State.” Vertical rough-sawn Tasmanian Oak clads the gabled ends and contrasts with the horizontal black Colorbond cladding on the roof and rear of the house, wrapping around the edges of the eaves that shield against the northern summer sun. Tasmanian Oak is also on the oversized front entry door, which leads into the cosy and inviting living area with spectacular views of the water and mountain. The 45-degree raking ceiling lined with Baltic pine creates a light-filled, voluminous space, with handcrafted Tasmanian Oak black trusses accentuating the height and form. Three operable skylights flood the room with natural light and release unwanted hot air. The kitchen, dining and living area is a compact space. The black kitchen joinery recedes at one end, while sliding glass doors opening to the large cantilevered deck. “It gives the occupants the feeling of being suspended over the Tamar River,” Murray says. The two bedrooms are at each end of the dwelling and a mirror image of each other. Floor-to-ceiling double-glazed windows capture the expansive views and solid timber sliding doors separate bedrooms and ensuites. The bathrooms are designed to have feel like a hotel, each with double showers, freestanding baths and opening to a covered deck where there’s an outdoor shower to feel more at one with nature and to take in Tassie’s fresh air. My Build mybuildhomes.com.au Photography by Anjie Blair Dissection Information Tasmanian Oak exterior timber cladding and trusses Colorbond in Night Sky for roofing and cladding Baltic Pine ceiling Skylights from Velux Tiles from Montile Ingeous kitchen benchtop from Essastone Joinery by Hodgman Kitchens & Cabinets Plumbing fixtures from Samios Mintori Contour bathtub from Decina  

Vertical rough-sawn Tasmanian Oak clads the gabled ends and contrasts with the horizontal black Colorbond cladding on the roof and rear.

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5 Heritage Houses Made New Again

We revisit some our favourite recent Alts & Ads projects that respect the heritage of the original building while extending or reconfiguring the internal layouts to make way for growing families, evolving needs or an unforeseen change in circumstances.  

Downside Up House by WALA

Downside Up House WALA cc Tatjana Plitt exterior elevation day Downside Up House in Albert Park, Melbourne, is a heritage-listed Victorian villa with a contemporary extension.The original building was a double-fronted heritage-listed Victorian house in serious need of repair. The modest-sized, triangular-shaped site presented a challenge on its own accord, not to mention a series of rear lean-tos that had been added in ad-hoc fashion. The new extension turns the typical ‘rear extension’ on its head. Designed by WALA, the house has living rooms upstairs, bedrooms downstairs, and a batten-screen façade that references the pitched roofs of the Victorian typology. [gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="84036,84034"] Photography by Tatjana Plitt. Read the full story here  

Glamorgan by DAH Architecture

Glamorgan by DAH Architecture Clients of DAH Architecture wanted an industrial, loft-like extension to their character Queenslander. For this, David Hansford, co-founder of DAH Architecture, was presented with a number of challenges. “The site is on Brisbane’s fifth steepest street, the house was in complete disrepair when we first measured it up and it had been victim of some strange alterations over the years,” he explains. Ultimately, the team created a full height, industrial-style steel glazed addition to the rear. Along with a radical infusion of light, the high ceilings enabled the design team to create a striking and moody industrial kitchen. [gallery size="large" ids="93846,93835,93837"] Photography by Andy Macpherson. Read the full story here   

Pavilion House by Robson Rak

Pavilion House Robson Rak Architects CC Shannon McGrath backyard Reflecting their clients' love for Mid-Century architecture, Robson Rak has designed Pavilion House with a particular composition that balances the integrity of its existing 1888 Victorian residence with a modern new glass pavilion. The brief for the architects was to design a welcoming and expansive home that would not only connect to the surroundings but also elevate the existing fabric features. The L.A.-style Pavilion extension and the existing Victorian terrace are more aligned internally than they may appear at first glance. Separating the two structures with two internal courtyards also brought lush greenery into every room, giving it a sense of space and an abundance of natural light. [gallery size="large" ids="87133,87127,87125"] Photography by Shannon McGrath. Read the full story here  

Port Melbourne House by Pandolfini Architects

Port Melbourne House Pandolfini Architects CC Rory Gardiner entrance The century-old house had been largely untouched when Dominic Pandolfini, founder of Pandolfini Architects, purchased it. He carefully restored the front with a crisp, light palette, and designed a two-storey extension that’s not visible from the street. A courtyard in the middle of the house separates the old and new forms, reducing the visibility of the extension from the street and bringing natural light into the centre of the plan. The extension consists of a double- and single-storey volume spliced by a large skylight that spans the width of the building. [gallery type="rectangular" ids="85127,85124,85121"] Photography by Rory Gardiner. Read the full story here  

Collector's Cottage by Mark Szczerbicki Design Studio

Collectors Cottage Mark Szczerbicki Design Studio CC Tom Ferguson backyard This new addition to a worker's cottage by Mark Szczerbicki Design Studio comprises a new open plan kitchen, dining area and seamless transition to a second alfresco dining area. A feature wall of exposed brick of the side of the new kitchen references the original build and offers a raw touch to an otherwise finely finished interior. In a similar vein, rafters inside are left exposed (but painted white) and the exterior of the extension – hidden from the streetscape thanks to a sloping site – is clad in Cedar, left to patina over time to an anticipated silvery-grey effect. [gallery size="large" ids="89655,89658,89660"] Photography by Tom Ferguson. Read the full story hereabc
Around The World
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5 Exceptionally Designed Food & Beverage Venues

A good restaurant, bar, or cafe is more than the food and drinks that it serves. It is an immersive experience, meticulously designed - right down to its finest detail - to titillate the five senses of each of its guests. In 2019, these five places caught - and held - our attention for doing exactly that.

Kaizen Coffee Co., Bangkok, by space+craft

Kaizen Coffee Co. by space+craft

Kaizen Coffee Co. is known as one of the best specialty coffee places in Bangkok. It all began when Arnun Wattanaporn, a young barista, became inspired by the vibrant cafe culture in Australia and sought to recreate a version of it in Thailand’s bustling capital. After enjoying a widely successful reception, Kaizen set out to breach new frontiers and re-establish itself as a place to enjoy fresh, healthy meals as well as great coffee. This called for a change in design concept for Kaizen – aesthetically and functionally. To help design and bring this new iteration of Kaizen Coffee Co. to life, Arnun enlisted local design studio, space+craft.

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Photography by Ketsiree Wongwan. Read the full story here.

Conrad Centennial, Singapore, by Brewin Design Office

Conrad Centennial Singapore Brewin Design Office

Having occupied a prominent spot in Singapore’s skyline for over 22 years, the quintessentially post-modern Conrad Centennial Singapore was long due for a facelift when the hotel engaged local architectural firm Brewin Design Office to renovate the hotel’s public areas. Anchoring on Brewin Design Office’s reputation for designing highly detailed residential projects with an emphasis on programmatic function, fabrication and construction processes, the client’s brief called for a design that felt intimate and complementary to the existing spaces of the hotel and created a contemporary response that stayed true to Conrad’s brand.

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Read the full story here.


ISH, Melbourne, by Annu Bains

ISH Restaurant Melbourne Annu Bain CC Rhiannon Taylor fine dining interior with brass highlight colours

The celebrated interior architect Annu Bains is also the mother of restaurateur Ganeev Bains and together, celebrating their Indian heritage, they have pieced together the latest destination restaurant – ISH –  in one of Melbourne’s finer culinary precincts, Gertrude Street in Fitzroy.

ISH is a modern Indian restaurant that effortlessly balances a tightrope between east and west, old and new – both in terms of culinary and interior design. Ganeev and his head chef, Sainyam Kapoor, bring a sophisticated edge to the Indian food palette we all know and love.

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Photography by Rhiannon Taylor. Read the full story here.


MAURI, Seminyak, by Ushers By Design

MAURI Seminyak Bali Ushers By Design dining booths

A friendship between two Italian chefs who separately came to (and met in) Bali, Indonesia, has evolved into a culinary partnership with the recently opened MAURI restaurant in Seminyak. Happily remaining in the kitchen, they have engaged Bali-based design studio Ushers By Design, led by Caroline Usher and renowned for their work in the hospitality sector, to take the lead on the architecture and interior design.

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Read the full story here.


Duck & Rice, Sydney, by Hogg & Lamb

Duck and Rice by Hogg and Lamb

Luxurious in its charm, Sydney’s new rooftop palace, Duck & Rice provides a contemporary Cantonese experience as a reimagined fusion concept of Traditional Chinese and Style Moderne. Queensland design studio, Hogg & Lamb architects completely transform the 800-square-metre space into a revitalised urban sanctuary of opulence and grandeur. Revolutionary ideas of Eastern bold flavours and Western art and design from the 1920s and 1930s define the philosophy for this boundary-pushing restaurant.

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Photography by Christopher Frederick Jones. Read the full story here.

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A Space Of Intimacy And Intrigue By Landini Associates

Known for its refined aesthetic, Sarah & Sebastian was founded on the principles of understated luxury and avant-garde innovation. And when Sarah Gittoes and Robert Grynkofki, Sarah & Sebastian’s creative director and managing director respectively, briefed Landini Associates for the brand’s second physical retail space, these principles remained core to design. The brief was to create a space that was intriguing, without being intimidating; a complementary evolution to the brand’s Paddington Flagship, which opened its doors in 2017. Drawing inspiration from the Paddington store Landini Associates have created a space in Mosman that celebrates the magic in mystery, discovery, warmth and intimacy. In keeping with the timeless elegance of the brand’s look and feel, the space is minimalist – almost museum-like – by design. The interior utilises refined, lightweight fixtures aimed at exhibiting the intricacies of Sarah & Sebastian’s handmade pieces. This is anchored by a linear display case stretching the length of the store, and further elevated by streamlined and strategic lighting design. Throughout the store’s interior, Landini Associates uses materiality to toy with notions of reflection, translucency and discovery. Key materials such as concrete, walnut, blackened steel, mirror and frosted glass are layered to form a harmonious balance between light and dark; floating and solid; and lightweight and heavy elements. “The challenge of traditional retail is what galvanized us to approach our second store with the intention of engaging clients through immersive experiences, tactile installations and intimate communication with our people,” says Robert on the thinking behind the store’s design. Meanwhile Mark Landini, creative director of Landini Associates, is glad to been a part of Sarah & Sebastian’s latest evolution. “It has been a joy to collaborate with Robert and Sarah once again on the design of their second store,” says Mark, “our first collaboration was a simple glass box in Paddington, our second an extruded concrete sleeve. Each version a surprise, but both a reflection of Sarah & Sebastian’s core philosophy of beauty, simplicity and timelessness.” And going by what Robert has to say, this won’t be the last we see from this creative coupling. “Our Mosman store is an exciting evolution of the Sarah & Sebastian retail concept which we will continue to refine and develop.” We’ll be watching this space to see what comes next. Landini Associates landiniassociates.com Sarah & Sebastian sarahandsebastian.com Photography by Ross Honeysett We think you might also like Aesop Pitt Street by Snøhettaabc
Around The World

M Atelier Brings A Taste Of London To Singapore

Travel is not only good for the soul, but it also inspires the mind with fresh ideas and inspiration. While most people bring back memories of their favourite places through souvenirs and unique finds, this couple wanted to bring the feel of London into their home. “They really loved the storefronts when they visited London. So, they wished for us to design a ‘storefronts’ area where they can showcase and decorate the glass display for different occasions,” says designer Megan Zhang of M Atelier. The couple share the HDB flat with their pets, a dog and a chinchilla. They also enjoy hosting family and friends in large groups of ten to 20 guests. So, the five-room flat must feel as spacious as possible. “Due to the layout, the living-and-dining space is in an odd trapezium plane. Thus, proper space planning is important to fully utilise the angled space,” Megan adds. To make the space ideal for hosting, the designer created several areas where guests could gather. The open-plan kitchen flows out to a breakfast area with an island counter perfect for baking. Behind the kitchen island is the storeroom, neatly hidden with a concealed door. The customised storage wall doubles as a feature that extends towards the bedrooms. There’s even a dining set placed close by to the kitchen island. Aside from the living area, guests can also relax in the London ‘shop’, which functions as an entertainment room. The black façade of this space, as well as the sign, gives it an elegant, upscale feel. Inside, a marble-patterned feature wall and a daybed dress up the space. Black frames for the sliding door at the balcony echo the black exterior of the entertainment room. For a spot of fun, Megan introduced patterned floor tiles in the balcony. The bedrooms too are hidden behind concealed doors that have been built flush with the woodgrain-patterned wall. A portion of the wall was removed to accommodate a large wardrobe in the master bedroom. This move allowed the wardrobe to be built flush against the wall. Megan explains, “The back of the wardrobe becomes the television feature wall in the entertainment room.” Lastly, the bathrooms feature monochromatic patterned tiles. One bathroom sports marble patterns while the other has stone patterns on the walls. The vanity cabinets inject a pop of colour to each and create a focal point. The clever use of colours, patterns and textures throughout this storefront inspired flat culminates in a sophisticated yet whimsical aesthetic for a fun-loving couple. M Atelier m-atelier.sg We think you might also like Kondo Condo by Downie Northabc
Design Products
Fixed & Fitted
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Humble, Handmade Light Fittings From Marz Designs

As a designer – and a human – Coco Reynolds is refreshingly down-to-earth. The proof is in the thoughtful materiality of the items that come out of her independent industrial design practice, Marz Designs. Consider the Terra lighting collection, for instance; a versatile selection of pendants, ceiling and wall fixtures, born from a marriage of natural materials in functional form. Handmade clay ceramic shades and combinations of hand-turned timber compose the collection’s design variations – each of which is honest in appearance and architectural in construct. Made in collaboration with Byron Bay-based artisan, Grit Ceramics, the slip cast ceramic components of the light shades are available in a choice of three tones; Slate, Sage, and Vanilla Bean. Each Terra collection piece is infused with subtle variations inherent of handcraft, making each light fitting rich in origin and unique in form.

Terra 00

[gallery size="medium" ids="97154,97151,97155"] Crafted with a combination of two contrasting half domes, Terra 00 is available in pendant, wall and ceiling-mounted formats. Ceramic shades paired with hand-turned FSC certified timbers in Walnut or Oak to create these unique pieces.  

Terra 0

[gallery size="medium" columns="2" ids="97157,97156"] Featuring a brass backplate and a short or long articulating arm this light is available in a wall light format and is both directional and functional. The singular domed ceramic fitting creates a controlled light source.  

Terra 1.0

[gallery size="medium" ids="97163,97164,97162"] Simple cylindrical ceramic forms create the Terra 1 range. Available in pendant, wall and articulating wall formats. Mix and match to bring a sense of individuality into a master bedroom.  

Terra 1.5

[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="97158,97160"] A matte cylindrical shape is layered with a smaller glazed base to create this asymmetric stack of ceramic forms with two contrasting finishes. The Terra 1.5 is available as a feature pendant or directional ceiling mounted light.  

Terra 2.0

These lights feature two slip-cast lamp holders with unique brass or blackened brass detailing. A duo of ceramic cylinders stacked to form a bi-directional wall light suitable for both residential and commercial interior spaces.   Marz Designs marzdesigns.com We think you might also like Buster + Punchabc
Around The World
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5 Times Bricks Had A Moment In The Residential Space

Over the years brick has remained a highly effective tool for thermal protection against extreme heat and cold. In addition to its functional properties, these residential projects highlight the material’s ability to form a decidedly striking façade and re-imagine an old material with a modern edge.  

Edsall Street Residence by Ritz&Ghougassian

Edsall Street Ritz&Ghougassian CC Tom Blachford building elevation exterior The movement from old to new in Edsall Street House is delineated by a change from weatherboard to masonry walls. “We chose masonry because it suggests the idea of protection from the elements and it also allowed us to wrap the material from outside to inside so we could bury windows in between,” says Gilad Ritz, architect and co-founder of Ritz&Ghougassian. This is achieved through a cavity between the internal and external masonry walls. “Glass doors in the kitchen and living area that lead to the courtyard slide inside the cavities when they’re opened,” adds Gilad. “It’s like they disappear.” Concrete is also a material favoured by Ritz&Ghougassian and they have incorporated it into the flooring of the kitchen and living areas. The blackbutt floor in front of the house is referenced through joinery in the kitchen, master bedroom and staircase. “We purposely sat the joinery off the masonry walls in the bedroom so that it looks like a piece of furniture.” says Gilad. [gallery size="large" ids="85257,85260,85259"] Photography by Tom Blachford. Read the full story here  

Brick House by Collective Project

Brick House Collective Project cc Benjamin Hosking exterior When constructing this residence in Bangalore India, brick was one of the main requests of the clients. Hand-moulded table bricks were used in place of standard wire-cut bricks, which offer soft edges and welcome imperfections. “We felt these bricks told more of a story and in this case, we were keen on creating a project that was both precise and contemporary (the building geometry) and imperfect (the hand-moulded brick),” says Eliza Higgins of Collective Project. All the materials (brick, stone and wood) were locally sourced. The brickwork, including the traditional perforated jaali screen, characterises the new house and offers a strong visual identity. Inside, the brickwork interacts with cream white plastered wall surfaces, thus avoiding repetition of the exterior whilst still referencing it. [gallery size="large" ids="91735,91741,91739"] Photography by Benjamin Hosking. Read the full story here  

GB House by Renato D’Ettorre Architects

GB House by Renato D'Ettorre Architects Underpinning the design of GB House is a search for clarity, necessity, and order, achieved through selections and orientations intended to forge and harmonise relationships between inside and out, materials and spaces, communal and private. Materials such as brick and terracotta were chosen for their inherent simplicity, honesty and low-maintenance qualities. The architect collaborated with PGH Bricks to create the custom terracotta breezeblocks that met the client’s functional and aesthetic desires, providing a dynamic play of light to the interior while letting the house breath and tempering the views as well as the weather. A cavernous cellar built entirely from dark face bricks is visible and accessible from the music room through glass sliding doors. Leveraging passive design elements, the cellar is naturally cooled from the sandstone cavity, which is kept cool and moist by the water constantly seeping from the rock crevices. [gallery type="rectangular" ids="94057,94053,94047"] Photography by Justin Alexander. Read the full story here  

AgriNesture House by H&P Architects

H&P Architects AgriNesture | Habitus Living The two-storey house is quite literally a cube – 7m x 7m x 7m – with voids inside that can be rearranged later as needs arise. The outside looks simple but unusual: a non-plastered brick wall with neither details nor balcony. The structure and covering are fixed from the beginning but allow further development inward. A double-layered brick wall with buffer space enables the atmosphere to be cooled down in the summer but kept warm in the winter. Pre-installed windows in all directions, at different locations and in various sizes help maximize ventilation. H&P has paid close attention to the “new” daily life of the resident: trees are arranged in the voids (with skylights above), and the roof is designed as a vegetable garden because a garden on the ground could be destroyed by the chickens. For better practical application of the house, H&P Architects has some improvements to make; such as minimizing the skylight to maximize the roof garden area, making the double-skin brick walls “breathable”, sun-screening and rainproofing for windows. [gallery size="large" ids="85928,85929,85925"] Photography by Nguyen Tien Thanh. Read the full story here  

Boundary Street House by Chan Architecture

Boundary Street House Chan Architecture CC Tatjana Plitt facade Bold, angled geometries define the façade which features recycled brickwork and black sheet metal cladding. “The façade was then ‘peeled open’ via the use of perforated mesh exposing the steel structure underneath,” architect Anthony Chan adds. “This created varying levels of transparency and privacy whilst allowing natural light into the entrance area.” Other passive design principles that Chan Architecture adopted include the strategic positioning of living spaces and windows for solar gain in winter, and sliding doors for cross ventilation in summer. “Extensive brickwork was also used on the eastern façade to add to the thermal mass of the building in winter,” continues Anthony. “This was all to minimise the amount of energy required to heat and cool the house throughout the year.” [gallery columns="2" size="large" ids="86854,86858"] Photography by Tatjana Plitt. Read the full story hereabc

Savage Design Takes Up Residence In Surry Hills

The launch of Savage Design’s first showroom last Thursday, December 12 was an intimate and rather emotional affair – in the best of ways. As fourth-generation Savage, Joel, took to the doorstep express his gratitude to his family – parents, wife, children, and colleagues alike – for the environment they create for each other each and every day, it was hard not to feel the feels. The opening of Savage Design’s Surry Hills showroom – its first non-workshop space in history – marks the dawn of a new era for the family owned and operated industrial design studio. For over 100 years, the Savage family has been waking up early, putting on steel-cap boots, and heading to the factory – a place of grease, sweat, and sparks. While this is not set to change, they now have another home to visit – a place of class, comfort, and coffee. The showroom’s interior has been designed in-house by Savage Design’s own design department, and is characterised by signature dark tones, with highlights of brass, bronze, and steel throughout. Joel describes it as, “A space to really embody the company; precision, attention to details, honesty and a bit of grease thrown in for fun. Our customers are now able to immerse themselves in the whole experience by seeing and touching our products along with hearing about the history of the pieces and the business. The showroom will be staffed by designers and engineers, so our customers know they are getting the most technical and up to date information from the people who create our furniture, lighting and hardware.” [gallery size="medium" type="rectangular" ids="97465,97463,97460"]   Savage Design’s design director, James Groom teases, “there is a back story to this new venture, involving many characters – including the craftsman behind Newtown’s characteristic terrace and graveyard iron work; a manufacturing pioneer; a heroic feminist; and the team of one of Australia’s leading manufacturing companies. The team are looking forward to telling these tales to clients amongst the furniture, lighting, hardware and accessories now with a permanent address.” The Savage Design showroom, located at 236a Riley Street, Surry Hills, Sydney, will be open to the architecture and design industry as well as to the public Monday to Friday 10am – 6pm. Savage Design savagedesign.com.au Photography by Fiona Susanto abc
Design Hunters
DH - Feature

The Intuitive Practice Of Studiopepe

It’s no exaggeration to say the world’s biggest design fair attracts crowds like none other and while the content is invariably good, the cues can be less than well-received. In 2018 the co-founders of design agency Studiopepe, Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara Di Pinto, presented Club Unseen, a secret dance club in retaliation against the hectic crowds, queues and utter chaos of Fuori Salone. The design intent was to represent the quiet that gives space to creativity. In 2019, the pair worked with brands like Areti, Ceramica Bardelli and Tacchini on an installation/exhibition space entitled Les Arcanistes: The Future is Un/Written. Housed in a large industrial space formally used in the 1900s for manufacturing gold, the manifesto project was an investigation into the interplay between matter and divination. The name derives from the arcanists, the first chemists, and plays on the secrecy of the formulas they kept to create gold, porcelain and glass. [caption id="attachment_97022" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Cafeé Zal[/caption] But it also references the Arcanas, the 21 Tarot cards representing collective unconscious. “Though the future is unwritten, the answers already lie within us,” reads the studio’s design statement. The multidisciplinary design studio works across installation art, interior design, product design and creative consultancy and this human-centric, experiential approach to design and installation has heavily informed other works in the duo’s portfolio. As such, it is exactly what Studiopepe has become known for since its foundation in 2006. “We investigate the subjective and objective sensations and experiences linked to colours in order to define the personality of each project,” says Chiara. It’s this approach that leads them to their ultimate vision and ensures each project has a unique identity. In 2018 Studiopepe completed an interior design project for Cafezal, a local speciality coffee shop in Milan. This project exemplifies the studio’s partiality for playing with geometry and colour. [caption id="attachment_97019" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Alysi store[/caption] “We like working with classic shapes and creating variations on archetypes using materials and colours to reinterpret a project or piece rather than [inventing] unusual forms,” says Chiara. “The result of this is a very simple, yet very refined design that could be from the Art Deco era or the 80s, but still looks contemporary.” Arianna is quick to point out, though, that although she and Chiara love to work with eclecticism and be brave with design, they’re never designing for design’s sake: “Aesthetic and beauty is not something that is only relayed with shapes. It’s a moral attitude, it’s supposed to create an emotion; otherwise it’s destined to pass away in a very short time.” It’s clear the duo is acutely aware of the changing nature and expectations of hospitality and retail spaces. Now that we know and understand the profound effects that architecture, design and interiors can have on consumers, the bar is set higher than ever before. “Hospitality is becoming more and more personal,” says Chiara. Studiopepe assesses not only the black and white requirements of a brief, but also external influences like environment, location, culture, history, target audience and brand DNA. By working with these factors rather than against them, the studio can craft experiences that incite emotion. “We always try to amaze you,” says Arianna, by way of final comment. And they do, but what I find truly amazing, is that sometimes this may be in the colour and boldness of a space they’ve created, other times in presenting something unexpected yet sincerely aligned to a brand. And yet sometimes it’s simply in Arianna and Chiara’s thought processes – a dynamic that indelibly marks the design of a space. Studiopepe studiopepe.info Photography by Giuseppe Dinnella and Andrea Ferrari [caption id="attachment_97026" align="alignnone" width="1170"] Club Unseen[/caption]abc
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Introducing The Australian Furniture Design Award 2020 Shortlisted Designers

While the Australian design community has been waiting with bated breath, an esteemed industry jury has been pouring over countless conceptual responses to the Melbourne Design Week 2020 theme ‘How can design shape life?’, with the end-goal of identifying a shortlist of five. On the judging panel was none other than Tony Russell, brand director, Stylecraft; Simone LeAmon, curator, Contemporary Design and Architecture, NGV; Brian Parkes, chief executive officer, JamFactory; Helen Kontouris, designer and creative director, LEN; and Tom Owens, managing director and principal, Gensler. On the judging process, Simone LeAmon of NGV said the award jury “sought out submissions that demonstrated critical and creative thinking and explored new design and production processes. There were diverse approaches and much debate about furniture as both a critical practice capable of telling stories and opening conversations, and furniture as a commercial paradigm that must come to terms with a new age of sustainable materials and manufacturing. In the end the shortlist bridges both of these worlds and represents the diversity of Australian furniture practice.” The five who made the cut – Marta Figueiredo, Michael Gittings, James Walsh, Design King Company with Dr. Christian Tietz, and Supercyclers with Seljak Brand – have now been invited to present their realised designs for exhibition and judging at the Stylecraft showroom during Melbourne Design Week 2020. Each of the shortlisted designers certainly brings a inimitable perspective to the fore, promising an intriguing showcase of the plethora of ways in which design can shape life.    

Marta Figueiredo

Portuguese architect, artist, and designer, Marta Figueiredo worked for many years in London and Paris, before settling in Melbourne in 2013. Founded in 2016, her design and curatorial practice unites sophisticated craft with playful and sensory stimulation.

Michael Gittings

Born and bred in Albury, NSW, Michael Gittings has roots in the construction trade – specifically, roof plumbing. Upon returning to Australia following a six-month Euro-trip in 2014, Michael began exploring a number of creative pursuits, before settling on furniture design. His current practice is deeply intuitive, focussing on metals and their properties.     

James Walsh

Having graduated for RMIT with first-class honours in 2017, Sydney-based industrial designer James Walsh is on the brink of great things. Already, he has accumulated over six years’ experience in various furniture and lighting companies and exhibited at the likes of Salone Satellite in Milan. Currently James is working with Vert Design, while also dabbling in various side projects and exhibitions.

Design King Company with Dr. Christian Tietz

As director of industrial design at UNSW Sydney, Dr. Christian Tietz is particularly interested in the role of data in telling a story about users and their often surprising daily rituals. Christian’s entry is a collaboration with Sydney-based architectural practice, Design King Company.

Supercyclers with Seljak Brand

Seljak sisters Karina and Samantha leverage their respective qualifications in fashion design and sustainability leadership to close the loop of the product lifecycle. Similarly, Supercylers is a design collective that aims to build a sustainable future into the products they create and transform perceptions of waste materials in the process. Based on this information alone, we are certainly excited to behold the Australian Furniture Design Award 2020 showcase. Prototypes of the designs from each of the finalists will be on display at Stylecraft Melbourne during Melbourne Design Week 2020 (March 12-22), with the winner set to be announced on Friday, March 20th 2020. The winning designer will deservedly take home a $20,000 cash prize, along with an invitation from Stylecraft to develop a design through to commercial production for distribution and a two-week residency program at JamFactory in Adelaide to experiment with new ideas and materials, prototype new work or explore new making processes. Stylecraft stylecraft.com.au Australian Furniture Design Awards ngv.vic.gov.au  abc
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5 Recent Additions To Habitus’ Dream Stays List

From a secluded island shack in Tasmania to an idyllic resort in a mountainous region of Japan, 2019 saw the emergence of many great places to stay across the Indo-Pacific region. These five however, deserve a special mention, for they are officially on Habitus’ list of dream places to stay.

Lindis Lodge, New Zealand

The Power Of One: Solitude Done Right At Lindis Lodge | elevation

Solitude and scenic beauty are the dream combination for hoteliers and proprietors, but when the scenery is out-of-this-world stunning, it can also pose a unique problem. How does one design a holiday stay that feels in harmony with its natural surroundings, but also creates the impression that the building is a destination in its own right? For anyone pondering the issue, Lindis Lodge, in New Zealand’s Southern Alps, provides the blueprint for this delicate design dance.

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Photography by Patrick Reynolds. Read the full story here.

Alila Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur

On the ground floor, the regular intervals of openings of the structural grid are turned into entry doors and protective canopy. A large number of potted plants and timber finishes work in tandem to soften the structure’s colossal scale. At the hotel’s upper lobby on level 42, guests are welcomed into a double-height space with a fully glazed facade that maximises natural light. In the evening, the space would glow like a lantern in Kuala Lumpur’s glittering skyline. Next to the lobby is the centrepiece of the hotel’s urban oasis concept. Neri&Hu broke the structure open and inserted a three-storey-high courtyard around which all activities in the hotel are centred.

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Photography by Pedro Pegenaute. Read the full story here.

Shishi-Iwa House, Japan

Shishi-Iwa House Shigeru Ban Japan exterior morning

An idyllic resort within a mountainous, picturesque setting of the Nagano Prefecture, an hour away from Tokyo, Shishi-Iwa House sits like a well-fitted glove within its context. Crafted in a curvilinear formation with an undulating roof that mimics the treeline of the canopies of the surrounding forest, the retreat focuses on creating connections with nature from the outside inward and, likewise, from the inside to the outside, allowing the resort’s garden to set a living backdrop via strategic openings to encourage outdoor access and views.

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Read the full story here.

The Calile Hotel, Brisbane

The Calile Hotel Richards & Spence CC Sean Fennessy exterior pool lable tiles

With 175 rooms including 11 suites, an elevated central 27-metre pool and deck, an award-winning restaurant, day spa, cocktail bar and retail offering at both ground level and pool level, The Calile Hotel is a staggering brief to take on for any practice, let alone one that hadn’t yet explored a hotel project. But for Ingrid Richards and Adrian Spence, co-directors of their eponymous practice, it was a natural progression in their strong working relationship with Calile Malouf Investments, the company behind much of the James Street revival.

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Photography by Sean Fennessy. Read the full story here.


Satellite Island, Tasmania

Return To Satellite Island | boathouse

Satellite Island itself is small, but larger than what you might think. There is one main house named the ‘Summer house’ and also another called the ‘Boathouse’, which is where you can sleep above the water. No shops to duck into for supplies or any other distractions. Though the island itself is very self sufficient. Early each evening I would collect mussels, dive for abalone and shuck oysters from the ancient rock shelf which circles the remote island. It was wonderful being able to collect what you needed, while observing the natural beauty of the coastal landscape. A primal routine. I would spend the days exploring and photographing the rock shelf and watching the tide come in and out, bringing with it beautiful sea treasure in the form seaweed, kelp and shells.

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Photography by Kate Rosenlund. Read the full story here.