Just a 10 minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland you arrive at this eclectic marine suburb, where the neighbours know each other and the local kids still congregate to play. Once you leave the street and drive down the steep driveway you are in a totally different world... It's like arriving at the bach.
You are greeted by a large pohutakawa red pivot door which leads you into the middle of the four levels flowing down this sloping property. As you walk down half a level on the wide staircase you are drawn immediately to the vast floor to ceiling, full width, glass stacking sliders that optimize the ever changing view of the bay. The sliding doors roll back and the glass balustraded deck becomes a flowing extension of the indoor living space and is where many hours are spend entertaining and watching the kite surfing at the bottom of the garden.
The large open plan living space is relaxed and free flowing with the kitchen area being the hub. The off white stone bench tops, high lacquered cabinetry with recessed handle grips and beautiful French appliances give this area a clean minimalistic look while discreetly hidden away behind a cavity slider is the scullery containing its own butlers sink and open shelving to hold appliances and easy access food storage.
The natural floorings used in the house, from the oiled smoked American oak in the main living areas to the plush 100% wool carpets in the bedrooms and the heated Italian marble flooring in the bathrooms make you want to go barefoot and enjoy the different natural textures.
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The lower level contains guest accommodation with separate wardrobe and bathroom, games room and wine cellar. The guest and games rooms open onto another amazing undercover entertaining deck which leads you down the grandstand like, nine metre wide steps to the garden. There is also an outside hot shower for rinsing off after a sail, kayak or swim.
The top level houses the master bedroom, once again with commanding views; walk through wardrobe and the largest bathroom of all with double sink, double bath and generous walk in shower.
At the back of the house is another double bedroom, bathroom and a comfortable office. Even though these rooms are at the rear some very clever design has enabled beautiful views to the bay.
Because of the amount of glass used and the northerly aspect, it was very important that an economical and discreet solution was found for solar control. The architectural design was critical with a cantilevered roof extending over the main deck allowing the sun to come directly into the living areas in winter when the sun is lower but shading during the summer months when it is higher in the sky. The master bedroom has a one metre wrap- around frame extending beyond the glass sliding doors to give protection from weather and sun. The house has also been fitted with recessed motorised Verosol Silverscreen blinds throughout. Totally out of view when not required but at the push of a button the blinds slide down to either cut out the fierce low afternoon western sun while still allowing views, or in winter providing extra insulation to retain warmth and give the house a beautiful snug feeling while sitting in front of the 1.5 metre fireplace.
Aluminium louvers have been used extensively throughout to give maximum ventilation all year round without having to open windows or the huge sliding doors.
The property is quite narrow and on the coast where the owners felt it important to be in harmony with the natural surroundings. The exterior use of stained cedar and arrowtown paint immediately tie the house to the beach. The completed landscaping once again sympathises and blends with the extended landscape.