Keen to stay in Cabarita Beach, a coastal town in north-eastern NSW, the owners decided to demolish the old house and build a spacious, modern two-storey home — now known as Happyness House — in its place
The original 1970s house was dark, cramped and nothing like the open, light-filled home the family dreamed of. Keen to stay in Cabarita Beach, a coastal town in north-eastern NSW, the owners decided to demolish the old house and build a spacious, modern two-storey home — now known as Happyness House — in its place
“The concept for Happyness House was to transform the lifestyle of our clients and this we achieved with simple planning, a considered approach to materiality and good passive solar design,” says the Queensland-based architect, Scott Carpenter of Create Architecture. “From the front elevation, Happyness House reads as three separate forms in white, grey and then black. The modest material palette of weatherboard, fibre-cement sheet, masonry and breeze block was largely inspired by the 1970s beach shacks inherent to Cabarita Beach, and it was the intent to replicate that modest ‘beachy’ feel in a contemporary manner.
“The main public zone of the house provides a solid connection between the front-yard pool area and the backyard space. The face-fixed sliding doors on either end completely disappear out of sight and the polished concrete floors are continued to the external areas to enhance this feeling of openness, blurring the boundary between indoors and out.”
Says Antony Hing from Sanctuary 28, the Gold Coast-based building company tasked with constructing the new home, “This project is an example of why a knockdown-rebuild can be a better choice than a renovation, or buying a new home nearby. The simple reality is that in cost-per-square-metre terms, renovating is nearly always more costly than building new. You also need to ask yourself what would the cost be of selling your current home and buying a home that has the features you’re looking for in the same area?
“Functionally and aesthetically, a knockdown-rebuild allows you to design-in what you want and require and design-out what you don’t. It can give you the best opportunity to orient the home to achieve the best passive energy efficiency; also, a well-designed new home in an established area often generates the highest of valuations for a given level of spend.”
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