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This steel and concrete home above the Shotover River makes a statement. Kim Dungey reports.
With steel cladding and four separate pavilions, this house near Queenstown commands attention.
The central pavilion has an open living space, flanked by a generous kitchen, a comfortable snug and the owners’ bedroom suite.
The guest wing includes two bedrooms, both with walk-in wardrobes and en suites, while the garage/‘‘man shed’’ has space for two vehicles, and includes a cosy room with a log burner, kitchenette and toilet.
Finally, a service area comprises a carport, boiler room and workshop.Designed by Patterson Associates, of Auckland, and built by John Gavin Construction, the house gained a gold medal and ‘‘smart home’’ award at the recent southern region Master Builders Awards. It is also shortlisted for the New Zealand Architecture Awards in November.
Nestled on the edge of an escarpment, the north-facing property offers expansive views over the Shotover River and on to Coronet Peak.
But unlike many Queenstown properties, there is not a gable or schist stone in sight. Instead, the pavilions have concealed monopitch roofs and are clad in Corten steel and concrete.
The rusted steel boxes were inspired by rural landscapes dotted with old barns and sheds; their colours reflect the rock and grasses of the local surroundings.
Steel is also used for wall linings in the lounge and dining area, complemented by concrete walls and floors that were poured on site. These robust materials are softened by warm Siberian larch timber.
The handcrafted concrete fireplace in the lounge appears to float within a large wall of north-facing glass.
In summer, the house remains cool, thanks to the shade provided by large cantilevered roofs and fully automated steel shutters over some windows.
The judging panel for the Master Builders’ Awards said the house demonstrated ‘‘refined technology that positively reflects the future of home automation’’. State-of-the-art heating, security, hydraulic shutters, lighting, entertainment systems, sensors and thermostats can all be remotely controlled with a smartphone.
John Gavin Construction says the 450sq m house was built as a permanent residence for a semi-retired New Zealand couple and is already proving popular with their adult children and grandchildren.