Swannanoa 1


Located between braided rivers and strewn with smooth greywacke river stone, the site bears the brunt of the easterly, norwest and southerly winds that blast the Canterbury plains.

The brief was for a five winged house to accommodate the owners and their frequent guests to incorporate an entry courtyard, river-stone, and sheltered and sunny outdoor spaces. The roof design and wing walls allowed for several separate but connected indoor and sheltered outdoor areas.

Oiled “blond” sustainably grown cedar weatherboards were chosen for their understated elegance. Stone for the entry was sourced from the nearby Waimakariri. In contrast to these natural materials the flamboyant ultra-high gloss hardwood doors highlight the entry.

NZ silver beech flooring flows timelessly from the entry throughout the living areas. There the high ceiling gives a sense of space and enables plenty of north facing glazing. Cross ventilation via automated highlights over the doors, sunscreen blinds and a louvered pergola contribute to passive cooling for year round comfort.

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  • Exterior
  • Interior