Marsden Cove Residence

Completed 2020

The original brief for this home was to create a “beach house” for relaxed family living.

It had to be robust, low maintenance, able to with-stand the rigours of a slightly inland coastal environment, private in the sub-urban context but connected with the surrounding environment.

The house is situated on a highly visible section at the front edge of the Marsden Cove canal system, with distant views through the canal entrance, across Whangarei Harbour to Mt. Mania. This connection was extremely important as was the openness to the marina. The client was passionate about family, the sea and boats with an over-arching desire to do things properly. Therefore a high level of design and finish was required.

The house is fragmented into three intricate divisions; the first, orientated towards Mt Mania and opens out to the pool and outdoor living with the private main bedroom above, the central portion comprises of the double height main lounge, entertainment lounge and kitchen; and the end portion consists of the garage and service rooms, guest bedrooms and bathrooms above.

Connecting these three elements of the building are the generous sized galleries which align with the jetties and canals of the marina creating dynamic sheltered and sun-filled courtyards.

The house was crafted from a robust and limited number of materials consisting of concrete floors, white coloured concrete walls, green tinted double glazing and concrete roof panels finished with a warm roof membrane system creating a thermally stable environment

Inside, walls, where appropriate are left as solid natural concrete, leaving a soft ambient impression. The commanding solid presence of the raw concrete material is contrasted with accents of timber, louvres and stainless steel mesh creating a warm and rich palette.

The “style” of the house evolved over a period of time.

Ultimately it was agreed that the house should reference the clean lines and uncluttered design of the modern movement while requiring to be of “this place.”

Capturing place was achieved by carefully connecting various interior spaces through dominant axes to the larger macro environment.

One example of this is demonstrated by the small box window leading to the main bathroom orientated to Taranga (Hen) Island.