Inspiring a relaxed coastal atmosphere and opening up towards the sand and the sea in Kuaotunu, New Zealand, this beach house designed by architects Crosson, Clarke, Carnachan is welcoming to say the least. The residence consists of several pavilions, reminding one of a camping experience, of being on a holiday and visiting your friends from tent to tent. When developing the plans for this new project, the architects had to consider the owner’s adoration for the former building and all its features. The initial structure was too important to demolish, so it was reinforced and given a larger degree of openness: “The social organization of the plan is relaxed and holiday-like. There is no front entry. Experiences of everyday rituals are connected to the outside and a contrast from urban living. The en-suite opens to the outside, allowing the experience of showering and bathing in nature“. We don’t know about you guys, but to us, this home and its views touched a holiday-sensitive chord.
What is new and exciting now can quickly begin to look tired and out of fashion, so the best buildings don’t just consider what will be interesting to look at now, but also how it might look to people in five, fifty or even a hundred years’ time. 2013’s hotly contested RIBA Stirling Prize went to Witherford Watson Mann Architects for their work on Astley Castle, Warwickshire. In what RIBA Past President Stephen Hodder has described as an extreme retrofit, the project essentially saw a new building inserted subtly into the heart of the old, with a new, two storey residence now hidden within the sandstone walls of the ruins of this medieval castle, to be used as a holiday home for up to eight guests
The best architects can create designs which will give clients and the public things they didn’t even realise they wanted, and this is especially important when architects are given the difficult brief of creating structures in much-loved, iconic areas.