House for BEES | Downie North

House for BEES | Downie North | Photographer: Clinton Weaver

2023 National Architecture Awards Program

House for BEES | Downie North

Traditional Land Owners
Cammeraygal and Borogegal peoples
Year
2023
Chapter

New South Wales

Category
EmAGN Project Award
Residential Architecture – Houses (Alterations and Additions)
Builder
Wrightson & Co
Photographer
Clinton Weaver
Project summary

Driven by shared values of connectedness, site-specificity, place making, passive design, and a valuing of less over more, House for BEES encompasses a modest addition directly connected to the garden. An acronym of the clients’ names, and a reference to their native bee hive, House for BEES is a moniker that encapsulates the client focused, collaborative design process and outcome for a family of four to their Federation home and garden in Mosman.

Conceived as a garden room, the design directly grounds and orient the occupants toward their garden. Kitchen, living and dining spaces are lightly contained by a floating roof, folded to capture northern light and facilitate the capture of south-easterly breezes. Structural simplicity and legibility dissolves the southern and eastern edge, with banks of sliding doors fully retracting to enable a seamless connection with the garden.

2023
New South Wales Architecture Awards Accolades
Commendation for Residential – Houses (Alterations and Additions)
Shortlist – EmAGN Project Award
Shortlist – Residential Architecture – Houses (Alterations and Additions)
New South Wales Jury Presentation

As a mad gardener my brief was to be passive and to feel connected to the garden. Evan wanted a chef’s kitchen. The aim was for both of us to be able to cook and entertain casually and comfortably whilst being wrapped in the garden.

We have many favourite bits but I love the horizontal cedar louvers on the outside of the sliding doors which remain open all year to ventilate.

The reno has had a surprising impact on each of us – the garden has become more productive and functional. Entertaining is a pleasure. The kids have a cricket pitch.

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House for BEES | Downie North | Photographer: Clinton Weaver

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