Ruxton Rise Residence by studiofour

  • AIDA Awards Shortlist 2020: Ruxton Rise by studiofour

    Architecture and interior practice studiofour channel the importance of family and wellbeing in Beaumaris’ tranquil Ruxton Rise residence.

    studiofour co-directors Annabelle Berryman and Sarah Henry are constantly striving for unity with nature in their work. Their Ruxton Rise project, which is also Sarah’s own home,  follows a passion for architecture’s direct influence on our health, creating a unique experience within this bayside Melbourne home. 

    The Ruxton Rise residence directly speaks to Sarah’s core values of family, health and integrity, with the objective to create “a little bit of something precious rather than a lot of something mediocre,” she says. Tucked away from street view due to its positioning in the elevation, the small site carries a sense of intimacy, structured to reflect the family’s beliefs. Sarah says the fluid floor plan was designed by studiofour to encourage longer conversations, more intimate memories and closer relationships, with a focus on family and community. Ruxton Rise’s communal design enables idleness to promote a healthier state of mind. 

    The kitchen, a gathering point for the family, includes a timber tabletop which blends the island bench and dining table. This design seeks to provide one furniture piece for all members of the family to use for their individual tasks at once. A theme of togetherness while also valuing privacy and separation ripples throughout the home.

    The home has an intimate indoor-outdoor connection through the design of an interior courtyard that acts as the heart of the residence. The internal garden, treated like an extra room, is connected to the interior through sliding doors. Complete with olive trees and pebble stones, it provides a space to read, listen to music, or sit in the sun. The inclusion of greenery as a central part of the home stems from studiofour’s focus on ‘nature deficit disorder,’ aiming to rebuild a relationship with the outdoors.

    “The combined kitchen island bench and dining table was key to the design of the home. Not only does this element function as the heart of the home, being the area where our family congregates for most of the day, but it is the area that culminates the design concepts for the home as a whole.”


    – studiofour co director Sarah Henry

    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour
    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour

    The Objekto Paulistano Armchair designed by Paulo Mendes da Rocha and Mark Tuckey coffee table exude comfort within the natural living space.

    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour

    studiofour’s passive design principles centre healthy living as the most important factor. Ruxton Rise is built with authentic materials and construction techniques to honour the objective of humility and integrity. Concrete floors and concrete bricks were selected to provide texture and subtlety throughout the home. Careful wiring processes act to minimise electromagnetic fields and a comprehensive water filtration system contributes to the organic and sustainable environment. Maximum light and ventilation drastically reduces the home’s VOC emissions.

    The Beaumaris residence uses a restrained palette to create a restorative connection to nature, pairing custom timber furniture pieces and Tadelakt wet areas. The kitchen and dining area features the CH20 Elbow chairs by Hans J. Wegner for Carl Hansen & Son along the extended table and Smeg kitchen appliances which neatly fit into the concrete backdrop. The Outdoor Sunbrella Butterfly Chair by Cuero accompanies the olive trees in the internal courtyard; an ideal spot to sit and relax.

    Tucked away in a natural slope, Ruxton Rise is an experience, focusing on the core values of family, health and integrity. studiofour’s flowing floorplan and material palette welcome idleness and a connection to nature and in doing so, forgo trends.

    “Materials and building techniques were selected for their honesty, as well as their ability to patina over time as it is important a house gets more beautiful as it ages.”


    – studiofour co director Sarah Henry

    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour
    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour
    est living | Ruxton Rise by studiofour

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