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Home Tour | South Yarra House by Pandolfini Architects

Among Victorian-era dwellings and eclectic apartment buildings on a highly populated thoroughfare in inner-city Melbourne, South Yarra House by Pandolfini Architects is deceptively simple in its form, giving no secrets away to the street about what exists within.

The front façade is an unadorned concrete wall that serves as a canvas for the ever-changing spectacle of dappled light and movement throughout the day.

“The client desired a private and tranquil retreat with spaces to entertain and host,” Pandolfini Architects director Dominic Pandolfini says. “From the beginning of the design process, they trusted our vision and allowed us to design a home with bold materials and intricately detailed sculptural elements to create a series of experiential discoveries throughout,” he adds.

The large house is spread over four levels, condensing its footprint and allowing for generosity in the garden areas. Upon entry, guests are greeted with a delicate length of patterned glass and six-meter-high windows in the double-height foyer space. Here, a soft spiral staircase sits alongside a curved brick form protruding in overhead from the main living area beyond — both existing as a series of sculptural pieces that are on permanent display.

The Zanotta Nena stools in the kitchen.

At the heart of the kitchen, a monolithic stone island with a zigzag feature is complemented by additional zinc cladding that conceals appliances and amenities.

“One of the most unique spaces in this house is the foyer,” Dominic continues. “The curved brick monolithic form that floats overhead as you enter the front door is a really special moment — the brickwork wraps around the form but also to the underside of the soffit, presenting as a singular pure object. This monolith gives nothing away of what is hidden behind it until you make your way up to level one, where a dark, moody entertainment area is revealed,” he adds.

Ascending the spiral stair, one passes between an exposed brick wall and zinc-clad pod to enter the main living area; a finely detailed space lined with stone battens, timber, and aged brass. In the kitchen, a zigzagging stone-block island juxtaposes accompanying objects around it, acting as yet another sculpture of permanence. 

VOLA 590H Kitchen Mixer

The kitchen features Miele appliances and the Vola 590H kitchen mixer.

“We worked closely with Myles Baldwin Design to create a unified dialogue between architecture and landscape,” Dominic reflects. “The journey through the home is enhanced by the curated planting moments, adding a layer of privacy around the home and creating a vivid outlook instead,” he adds.

Elevated above the primary concrete form, a ‘zinc box’ is offset from the façade to create a private terrace set among the trees that line the street. Inside this geometric form is a light-filled private retreat and bedroom with soft polished plaster and warming American oak and a grotto-like bathroom that echoes the interplay of light and dark throughout the home.

“The South Yarra House embodies our commitment to individualised outcomes, material exploration, longevity and creating spaces which spark curiosity and discovery,” Dominic says. “The South Yarra house demonstrates our commitment to innovative design and experimentation with materials and forms, solidifying our desire for genuinely distinct architectural expression,” he adds.

Cassina Indochine Swivel Armchair

The Cassina Indochine swivel chairs in the dining area.

Cassina Indochine Swivel Armchair

The open plan living, dining and kitchen features a discreet bar detailed with stone battens, WOODCUT walnut herringbone floors, and aged brass.

The entrance features a cantilevered curved staircase. The polished concrete flooring, punctuated with large stones, helps create a sense of connection between the garden and the interior.

  

 

 

Articolo Fizi Ball Wall Sconce

The Articolo Fizi Ball sconce in the primary bathroom.

Signorino Coloured Terrazzo EM-1087

The ensuite bathroom features Signorino coloured terrazzo

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