Home Tour | Bronte House II by Madeleine Blanchfield Architects

  • A Sydney-based couple commissioned Madeleine Blanchfield Architects to give their long-term family home a new lease on life.

    A sophisticated, contemporary home by the sea – Bronte House II measures up to this description now, but it didn’t always. The home has belonged to the same couple since the early 80s; it’s where they raised their family and intend to spend the rest of their lives.

    Madeleine Blanchfield Architects were engaged to extend the home’s lifespan, removing outdated elements and fine-tuning it for the decades to come. Flexibility, light and flow were essential to creating a modern home suitable to the needs of an empty-nester couple, as well as the accommodation of large family gatherings.

    The kitchen combines honed terrazzo, light grey marble and Ashwood veneer. Artwork by Katie Daniels; vase by Paola Paronetto; Swedese Spin bar stools.

    Reconfiguration of Spaces

    Design intervention began with a reconfiguration of spaces; removing a central staircase and introducing a formal entryway that opened into all living areas. The original design overlooked several opportunities for natural light, ventilation, and ocean views. The solution was replacing walls with glass sliding doors – both internally and externally.

    The Palette

    From a cool, muted palette consisting of light-wash timbers, soft textiles and a broad selection of natural stone – among them, honed terrazzo, Calacatta Verde marble and Esmeralda quartzite – emerges a collection of soothing spaces to rest and entertain. The consistent thread of blue-green tones in the form of natural stones strengthens the home’s connection to Sydney’s Bronte Beach. 

    The transitional spaces feature American oak parquetry, while the communal spaces feature American oak boards.

    &Tradition Formakami table lamp; sculpture by Tatsiana Shevarenkova; artwork by Marisa Purcell; Fritz Hansen Superellipse dining table and Grand Prix dining chairs; Articolo Trilogy horizontal pendant.

    Space Spotlight: The Kitchen

    The terrazzo kitchen island is a centrepiece within the home; a strong visual anchor around which the rest of the spaces convene. “When selecting the terrazzo for the island, we wanted something that felt calm and grounding, and that also averted the clinical feel some stone can have,” Madeleine says. 

    Internal glass sliding doors lead from the kitchen to the dining room, creating a subtle separation between the two spaces and connecting the kitchen to the ocean. In the owner’s words, “I remember Madeleine telling me if I am working in the kitchen I should always be able to see the ocean. And now I can – it brings joy daily.”

    The new design takes full advantage of the ocean views.

    Artwork by Claudia Bagnall; Poltrona Frau armchair; &Tradition Shuffle MH1 side table and Betty TK5 bench.

    The primary bedroom features a Roy wall light and custom bedside table by Madeleine Blanchfield.

    Karakter Principal chair; ND 175 desk.

    Wireframe sculpture by Giorgia McRae; lion sculpture by Georgia Harvey; artwork by Justin Maurice Scivetti.

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