SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs

water’s edge overlooks the sydney harbor

 

SAOTA and TKDS’ Water’s Edge is a multilevel villa that integrates its waterfront location across all facets of its design – from its orientation and program to its material palette and landscaping. Overlooking Sydney Harbor and guided by the grandeur of its setting, the residence creates a continuous interface with the water while mirroring the tones and textures of the neighboring sandstone cliffs.

 

Its facade is marked with simple geometries, clad in lava stone and accented with weathered copper, bronze aluminum, and honed Mount White Sandstone — a vernacular material prevalent throughout Australia. The architecture’s evocative character is complemented by Myles Baldwin’s landscaping, planting rare native species, large specimens, and sculptural tropical plants alongside cascading pools.

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
all images by Tom Ferguson

 

 

saota complete the villa as an extension of its natural site

 

Water’s Edge unfolds across an expansive plot of land, its streamlined linearity and chamfered planes echoing the horizon of the ocean beyond. To maintain a subtle presence, partially hidden from the streetfront while embracing scenic views of the harbor, SAOTA and TKDS lowered the villa into the landscape and maintained generous setbacks. Its resulting profile preserves the historic neighborhood’s modest character, while contrasting with the villa’s boldly sculpted stone elevation and cantilevered living areas.

 

The residents’ approach to the villa is an intimate, gradual unfolding, leading through a lushly landscaped forecourt through a sculptural porte-cochère and into the villa’s double-volume spaces. Inside, carved white sandstone columns support the roof, while full height-glazing fills the space with natural light and panoramic vistas. In the living room, delicately patterned and perforated copper screens filter this light, adding a gentle, foliage-like effect that softens the solidity of the columns and the space’s vast scale. Across the program, fluidity between indoor and outdoors is embraced while maintaining privacy for residents. Living areas are situated on the ground floor to allow easy access to outdoor spaces, while bedrooms are positioned on the upper levels.

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
SAOTA and TKDS complete the Water’s Edge villa

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
landscaping by Myles Baldwin complements the architecture

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
a sculptural porte-cochère leads into the villa

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
honed Mount White Sandstone — a vernacular material prevalent throughout Australia — is utilized

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
double-volume spaces lend a sense of grandeur

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
stone walls reflect the textures of the cliffs

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
sleek and metallic surfaces within

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
the material palette mirrors the tones and textures of the neighboring sandstone cliffs

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
open views overlooking Sydney Harbor

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
full height-glazing creates fluidity between indoor and outdoor spaces

SAOTA's water's edge villa echoes the tones and textures of australia's sandstone cliffs
openness and a sense of privacy are ensured at once

saota-tkd-waters-edge-sydney-designboom-1800-3

 

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project info:

 

name: Water’s Edge
location: Sydney, Australia
lead architect: SAOTA

SAOTA design team: Philip Olmesdahl, Erin Gibbs, Gerald Southwood, Jochen Schmidt Von Wuhlisch
architect in association: TKD Architects

interior architect: ARRCC
ARRCC design team: Michele Rhoda, Daniel Du Toit, Jeandre Toua, Leigh Daniels
interior design: Geoffrey Lopez, POCO Designs, TKD Architects
contractor: Pimas Gale
structural engineer: Partridge
electrical engineer: Floth
landscaping: Myles Baldwin
lighting design: Firefly PointOfView
photography: Tom Ferguson

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