When Addy Hooper engaged Julia English Architects to revise and reimagine her heritage home in Woollahra, it wasn’t an average renovation project. Hooper is an accomplished interior architect in her own right, and her globally-dispersed family of five gravitate to the home as a central touchpoint when they converge on Sydney.
Having already restored the historic features of the home when she originally purchased the property, Hooper saw the addition as a series of intimate spaces that felt comfortable, private and sophisticated. The end result, spanning creative collaboration from Julia English, Addy Hooper and interior architect Chantelle Kramer, is an impressive extension of the Victorian charm of the original structure and a sleek, sophisticated addition.
The design of the home gracefully transitions from the original Victorian style of the front living and bedrooms to the newer contemporary spaces, while reflecting the lifestyles and values of its inhabitants. Recognising the client’s love of hosting and bringing family and friends together, the open kitchen and dining room gently merge with the outdoor courtyard space. Meanwhile, the family’s extensive travel regimes lead to extensive inbuilt storage throughout the home for ample storage space for residents and guests.
As one in a row of five Victorian semi-detached houses in a heritage conservation area, the home has retained its original heritage fabric within the new design, with black still and black metal cladding adding a subtle update. The interior heritage elements continue to characterise the front of the home, with the signature Victorian ornate ceilings and antique stained-glass windows subtly balanced by the dark muted colour palette.
Hooper’s passion for sophisticated materials influenced the colour palette and materiality of the home. The deep hues of the colour palette reference Hooper’s work in Dubai and Russia with a rich, classic warmth, while the materials have been restrained to stone, timber veneer, brass and steel to emphasise a timeless luxury.
It’s the smaller details, like the custom brass handles and the timber veneer junctions that explore the combined talent and interests of English, Hooper and Kramer (along with builder Richard Heath from Create Construction) in bringing this home to a new era. Together they have explored the character of this heritage home while undertaking a modern transformation, one that emphasises quality materiality and form.