Completed in 1994, the Lovett Bay House in Sydney is a stunning example of residential architecture that reflects the idea of the house as a vessel and a cradle for the family. The house was designed by renowned architect Richard Leplastrier, known for his environmentally conscious designs that seamlessly integrate with their natural surroundings. The Lovett Bay House is located on a steep site with breathtaking views of the bay, and its design incorporates natural materials such as timber and stone, which complement the surrounding landscape.
The house features a simple and elegant design that prioritizes functionality and comfort, with spaces that flow seamlessly between indoors and outdoors. Using natural ventilation and passive solar design principles also ensures the house remains energy-efficient and sustainable. Overall, the Lovett Bay House is a true masterpiece of residential architecture that showcases the beauty of nature and the importance of designing homes that prioritize the well-being of their occupants.
Lovett Bay House Technical Information
- Architects: Richard Leplastrier
- Location: Pittwater, Sydney, Australia
- Typology: Residential Architecture / House
- Structure material: Wood
- Project Year: 1994
- Photographs: © Leigh Wooley and Courtesy of Richard Leplastrier
The house exemplifies the idea of architecture as a vessel and a cradle for the family. Our family of five lives comfortably in this one room.– Richard Leplastrier
Lovett Bay House Photographs
Article by Richard Leplastrier1
The site of this small house is a flooded sunken river valley. The pacific Ocean and the warm east coast current nurture the gentle climate, which controls the mild subtropical nature.
The house continues a history of simple living on the site, which I suspect has continued for thousands of years – small shells that litter the place lie testament to that fact. The building’s form is simple – its central core room restrains a broad cantilever roof that surrounds the building, the lack of columns allowing the line of the landscape to continue unbroken. Being inside the house is like sitting under a robust overhanging tree.
The house exemplifies the idea of architecture as a vessel and a cradle for the family. Our family of five lives comfortably in this one room. The small room we inhabit, in turn, inhabits a greater room whose walls are cliffs and floors the tidal level of the bay that rises and falls nearly two meters every six hours.
Because of the site’s isolation, all materials had to be brought in by water. As a consequence, all structures had to be lightweight and easily assembled. The house was built by Jeffrey Broadfield and friends in 1994.
The building’s form is simple – its central core room restrains a broad cantilever roof that surrounds the building, the lack of columns allowing the line of the landscape to continue unbroken. Being inside the house is like sitting under a strong overhanging tree.
– Richard Leplastrier
Lovett Bay House Plans
About Richard Leplastrier
Richard Leplastrier was born in 1939 in Melbourne, Australia. He is an Australian architect and AIA Gold Medal recipient. After graduating from Sydney University in 1963, he worked in the Sydney office of Jørn Utzon from 1964 to 1966, assisting with the documentation of the Sydney Opera House. He later studied at Kyoto University under Tomoya Masuda and worked in the office of Kenzo Tange in Tokyo.
Leplastrier established his own practice in 1970 and worked from his studio in Sydney’s Lovett Bay. He is a crucial figure in Australian architecture and architectural education. His architecture is sensitive to place and culture, and he uses his studio as a teaching room and a place to make architecture.
- Source: ‘Richard Leplastrier: Spirit of Nature Wood Architecture Award 2004’ published by Rakennustieto, Finland, 2004.