With spectacular views of Tūhua/Mayor Island (a landmark treasured by Māori due to the presence of black obsidian, the jet-black glassy stone the island is named after), it was only natural this luxe Signature Homes beachfront built property was designed to embrace and celebrate coastal living.
Where once sat a humble Kiwi bach, is now a sustaining a generously proportioned family beach house exuding tranquillity, timelessness and functionality. The brief called for a sleek yet robust home that could cater for entertaining large groups in multiple areas throughout any season, without losing sight of the home’s core purpose as a peaceful and intimate sanctuary for domestic life.
The harsh nature of Waihi Beach’s coastal environmental meant careful assessment of environmental effects was needed for this project, from coastal inundation and erosion through to natural character. Established rock seawalls and building setbacks provide erosion protection, while appropriate design responses in terms of base levels established on timber floor components protect the home against inundation risks.
The home’s cedar cladding and simple wedge form deliver a sharp yet classic interpretation of the typical beachfront bach. Strong lines beautifully collide with the asymmetry of the home’s natural surrounds, while the materiality of the vertically-stained cedar cladding (which will resemble a light-coloured driftwood as it ages) allows for a subtle blending into the environment’s character.
With such a distinct and striking locale, we couldn’t resist blurring the lines between indoor and outdoor living. A bold spine corridor playfully connects street to ocean, with pitching roof lines creating sheltered spaces and scale to draw the eyes through the hallway, past the bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen and lounge area, and eventually out to rest on Tūhua standing proudly in the distance.
Outside (on the seaward side), extensive decking elevates a gazing perch to take advantage of the sweeping ocean views in every direction. The elegant deck extends forward to the sea where an outdoor fire pit awaits, offering a sumptuous entertaining space and, quite simply, the best seats in the house. If the weather turns, a covered entertainment area with outdoor fire provides protection from the elements – offering a number of options for the family and their guests to enjoy those elusive coastal vibes year-round.
We were delighted to work alongside Signature Homes’ award-winning design and build team in creating this stunning home in Waihi Beach, Bay of Plenty.
Photography: Mark Scowen Photography
Construction: Signature Homes BOP Ltd
Interior Design: Twill Interiors
Commended Residential New Home Between 150m2 and 300m2 Category
"This deceptively simple house on a spectacular beach-front site provides for the best outdoor living with a contemporary twist on a firepit for entertaining and relaxing."
"From the minute we met with Jason, we were put at ease by his friendly, relaxed but professional manner. He shared our vision for our new home and we loved his passion for our project. We especially appreciated the fact that he would point out any design areas that we could improve on and listened carefully to what we had to say. So thank you Jason for designing us such an amazing home; we love every aspect of it! We have now lived in the home for 6 months and can honestly say there is nothing in the design that we would alter."
Andrew and Belinda Greville