The design brief for this project was twofold: make the most of the high country setting (sit within the landscape not detract from it) and to incorporate a clean, Japanese influenced aesthetic within the design. Our client lived in Japan for many years and was keen to bring some of their simple design appeal back to their New Zealand home.
We wanted to create a real sequence of experiences as you walk through the site, from controlled shapes at the road interface where your views are more contained and drawn to the front door. These shapes become more natural as you move through the house to the golf course side with the expansive, mountainous views. Overlaid on this layout is a line of rocks that march through the site (inspired by the Japanese dry landscape/ karesansui style), terminating at the existing rock outcrop to the north of the site.
Terrace Downs is a very harsh environment known for its 100km+ winds, extreme sun and snow. The materials, soft and hard, had to survive these extremes. Because of this there are many days when being outside isn’t a pleasant experience the house design involves numerous large windows so grand views of the setting could be enjoyed from the protection of indoors. The landscape design was the foreground to these views. The southern landscape needed to be functional (in terms of driveways, steps and paths to the garage and front door) however the northern design is more of a visual landscape.