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On a dramatic harbor and hillside site, the House Spry faces northeast
in the Sydney suburb of Point Piper, with a naturally steep topography between a street entrance at the lower side and a laneway at the upper. Exploiting onerous constraints from the local government and neighbors,
a single home with a garden and lap pool was designed for an older couple with adult children.
Conceived as a new datum, a new platform that houses additional bedrooms, bathrooms, and storage lifts the main level to the laneway height. The roof of this base, made in dark slate, is molded for courts, pools, and stairs, extending from inside to outside. The lap pool cuts deeply into this base, overhanging its edge with an aquarium window.
Delicately poised on this platform is a new, two-story, flattened, “S”-shaped timber and steel building. At the ground floor, it houses all living spaces and can be completely opened with massive sliding glass screens and a central, double-height, wind-protected courtyard.
At the upper level, two large bedrooms and their service spaces twist past each other to capture views and sunlight. The upper level is constructed of narrow strips of timber and 20 mm-toughened colored glass on edge, describing a screen of extreme fragility and lightness while providing absolute privacy for the parts of the “S” and running parallel with the neighboring house.
Durbach Block Jaggers Architects has three directors, Neil Durbach, Camilla Block, and David Jaggers, and a permanent team of eight who have worked together for more than 10 years. It’s a practice committed to searching for the possibilities of architecture itself – its power and poetry, its pleasure and necessity. The team is involved
in every aspect of every project from inception to completion and recognizes and respects each member’s talents and abilities.

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