The idea of the house started at a dinner, over a plate of lasagna.
Just like the Scottish architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the architect Peter Kennon from Kennon+ wanted to create more than a simple house. He wanted to create a home based on the present and future needs and desire of the client’s family.
Even if Peter Kennon didn't move in with the family for a couple of weeks like Mackintosh did back in the 1904s when he designed the Hill House in Helensburg, he created a special connection with the clients facilitating his better understanding of their habits.
The Scandizzo House is more than a residential project. It is a project about family life, comfort, growing and living together. It was finished in 2020 and it is located in Toorak, a suburb of Melbourne, Australia.
From the beginning of the project, Peter Kennon knew that he wanted more from this house. He wanted a home with identity based on the family view about the world and about the space where one can call home. He used as inspiration the background of the couple as base for making their house a home for their 3 sons.
The House is an extension of an old double fronted Victorian house located on a narrow site. Even though the project had some constraints like keeping the front rooms of the original house and the existing pool in the backyard, through close collaboration between the parts, the project was a success. The house consists of 4 bedrooms for a five-member familly: the couple and their, now, three young boys.
Pursuing a durable home idea that gives a sense of stability, the architect chose in situ concrete for the extension, which he left uncovered for the aesthetics of it. Despite apparent concrete very brutal and cold material appearance, the homeliness feeling was produced by using large openings that bring the exterior environment inside the house. Beside natural light, the grey concrete was sweetened with softer tones and hues and also with warmer materials. The architect proposed timber flooring, marble countertops, leather and softer materials such as linen or others soft texture furnishing. A close collaboration with the constructor, DuoBuilt, was necessary for the complex engineering of the concrete structure and the high level of finish.
Another special feature of the house is the pitched roof, which is in itself a classical shape that comes in harmony alongside the classic facade of the old Victorian house. The large volume of the living room area, which includes the kitchen, the dining zone and the relaxing zone with big openings creates a feeling of sheltered openness of the home.
The Scandizzo House is a contemporary example of great communication between the clients and the architect in creating a proper home. Created to measure of their needs and desire, the new house came into being the best environment for growing together.
Photography Derek Swalwell