Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage

Two-Storey Addition / The pool house

Design Architect: Luigi Rosselli
Project: Two-Storey Addition / The Pool House
Location: Randwick NSW, Australia
Project Architect: Carl Rutherfoord
Builder: Moulds Construction
Structural Consultant: Rooney & Bye Pty Ltd
Joiner: Kitchen Trend
Landscape Architect: Will Dangar
Photography: Justin Alexander

The wraparound swimming pool plays the starring role in these alterations and additions and becomes the architectural pivot that binds one hundred years of history. The organic two-storey addition at the back of a single storey 1910 cottage is surrounded by a swimming pool and the water is the focus that holds the two distinct sections of the house together.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 1

By extending the front veranda out to the side of the original cottage it provides a tandem carport, reinforcing the street presence and proportions. Old building techniques were adopted to construct this section, while at the rear cantilevered technology, motorised sliding louvre screens and large plate glass windows give this house a very liveable, comfortable addition The substantial cantilevered first floor master bedroom provides shade and a rainproof cover to the outdoor terrace, an elliptical stair connects the old and the new: the first floor bedrooms and the ground floor spaces.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 2

Appearing as a floating houseboat, the two-storey addition is surrounded by water. The verandah/carport is also new but detailed with traditional exposed rafters and ceiling lining boards, to complete the original verandah.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 3

The glazed ground floor living space plays hide and seek with the sun and the swimming pool. Motorised sliding shutters can provide the adequate privacy and solar control. L.S.S.A. (A.C.D.C.), the louvres contractor, applied new technologies to these remote controlled screens.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 4

The Emperor Adrian, built his Villa Adriana studio surrounded by a swimming pool as he used to train and swim around the studio as a daily routine. Short of the loop this ‘C’ shaped pool allows safe supervision of young children and maintains a fresh cool atmosphere around the house.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 5

The first floor bedrooms cantilever towards the backyard, being larger than the ground floor living spaces. The two rectangular volumes are shifted, each with different wall constructions: very glazed and open downstairs, and closed upstairs. The bedrooms have two sliding shutters, manually controlled.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 6

Glass Mosaic tiles give a natural shimmer to the water, similar to a pebble lined freshwater lagoon. Reflections on the soffits and ceilings provide unique light effects.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 7

Western Red Cedar ceiling and Blackbutt decking mirror the irregular back elevation. A fully transparent outdoor table chairs and a concrete BBQ break the timber symmetry.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 8

The Master Bedroom back elevation is intended to direct the windows away from the side neighbours.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 9

By dividing the first floor walls in three strips, the horizontality is reinforced; a lower structural spandrel below the windows, finished with an acrylic white render, a middle window strip with timber shutters and timber “log cabin” weatherboards, and an upper roof edge also finished with an acrylic render.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 10

To maintain the wealth of the turn of the century ornaments and details takes some skill. Repairing and adapting the old features are continuously threatened by the easy way out approach of removing them. Fortunately the builder had valued tradespersons that never found any tasks too difficult.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 11

The pool is always present, in this case from the new windows of the play room

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 12

Fully recessed window frames provide total transparency. The engineered oak floor is flush with the window frame.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 13

The stained timber louvres of the shutter cast stripy shadows.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 14

Linking the old house to the new is the spiral storage stair. The joinery to the right is a wine store.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 15

A ribbon of white plaster is finished with enamel paint to protect it from children’s finger prints.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 16

The elliptical stair has “balanced treads”, each tread originated from a moving centerpoint, providing an organic but natural and regular ascent.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 16

A custom made light floats in an airy space, ‘S’ wave sheer curtains blowing in the wind

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 17

The joinery by Kitchen Trend with a toughened glass window as a splashback.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 18

Delicate detailing of the stone makes it float above the stained timber body of the island. This emulates the cantilevered first floor additions outside.

Two-Storey Addition at the Back of a Single Storey 1910 Cottage 19

Bronze accents and handmade encaustic tiles from Europe.

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