My Ideal House Completed
Discover My Ideal House; a landmark home by Mirvac and Australian House & Garden to reflect the ultimate Australian lifestyle.
Come on in. This landmark home by Mirvac and Australian House & Garden is finished, furnished and looking fabulous for its new owners.
The My Ideal House is constructed from thermally efficient Hebel and punctuated with cheery window boxes made from Innowood.
There’s nothing like the joy of a new home. We have been building homes for over 45 years, and we know the elation of finally putting the key in the door and walking into a brand new, completely finished home never loses its thrill. We are once again riding the wave of elation, and it is with great excitement and pride that we open the doors and welcome you to take a look at My Ideal House.
From the street, the timber-and-white exterior of this home is immediately distinctive in the Sydney suburb of Gledswood Hills. With its beautiful window boxes now brimming with foliage, herbs planted between the steppers in the front garden and a lush expanse of turfed driveway, it’s instantly friendly and inviting. This, it quickly becomes clear, is a house where every detail has been considered.
Sydney architect Madeleine Blanchfield won the My Ideal House design competition run by Mirvac and Australian House & Garden with her plan for this home, which comprises two modules: a double-storey sleeping zone at the front and a single-level living area at the rear.
The timber front door opens to reveal an expansive view from entry to back garden. To the right of the entry is the multipurpose room, a generous space designed to be used any way the owners might wish. The chief drawcard is the inviting timber window seat that visually connects to the front garden.
Wide-oak floorboards, which extend to the bedrooms upstairs, imbue the home with warmth. When you reach the living areas, the flooring switches to an understated concrete-look tile, but timber is again utilised – this time on the ceiling. The result is a beautifully warm and textural addition to the large open-plan space. Designed to take the form of an airy “glass pavilion” the living zone delivers Madeleine’s vision for a seamless indoor-outdoor connection.
The area is defined by its deep charcoal walls (Taubmans Knight Grey), sink-into-me sofa and relaxed leather armchairs. The furniture is positioned around the Real Flame gas fire, creating a cosy spot to sit and read or enjoy a cuppa looking out to the garden. The adjacent dining zone is demarcated by a striking woven pendant.
Star billing in the open-plan space is reserved for the integrated kitchen, expertly crafted by Top Knot Carpentry and Joinery. The generous island bench, wrapped in a marble-look reconstituted stone, is the one element of the kitchen Madeleine intended to stand out – the rest of the joinery is deliberately designed to blend in with the architecture.
Neat V-groove cabinetry opens to reveal everything you’d expect to find in a well-equipped family kitchen, from a top-of-the-range dishwasher to a combi oven, French-door fridge and coffee machine. The cupboards extend from floor to ceiling, ensuring an abundance of storage to stash household items away. The kitchen is positioned at the far end of the living pavilion so it relates to the alfresco dining area and garden. One of the distinguishing aspects of My Ideal House is the relatively compact floor area of 289m², which allows it to buck the “build to the boundary” trend and give back space for lawn, trees and shrubs on its 416m² lot. The garden was always going to play an important role in the strong aesthetic of My Ideal House.
Landscape designer Richard Unsworth from Garden Life has created a garden for all seasons and included a low brick wall that extends the width of the property.
A strong horizontal form, it supports the home’s spirit of flexibility: the wall provides extra seating in the alfresco zone when entertaining, and is the perfect spot to perch and read the paper while the kids play on the lawn.
Meticulous attention to quality and detail make My Ideal House a leader in sustainability. The home’s wealth of sustainable features include:
- A modular design which can be adjusted to suit the orientation of any block, ensuring a north-facing aspect is always achieved.
- An exterior constructed from Hebel, which is quick to install and has enhanced thermal properties.
- A Tesla “Powerwall 2” solar storage battery in the garage which stores energy from the 5.4W photovoltaic panels on the roof. These inclusions are expected to save between $25,000 and $30,000 on electricity bills over 10 years.
- Low energy lighting and appliances.
- Timber window frames which reduce thermal transfer and high performance glass in both windows and sliding doors.
- Floor and ceiling wood farmed from sustainable forests.
One of the key successes of My Ideal House is the rigour in its planning. Every centimetre of the layout has been thoughtfully utilised – a hallmark of Mirvac properties. From the moment Madeleine was announced as the competition winner, Mirvac’s in-house design and construction teams provided expert planning and building expertise to ensure My Ideal House was built in the most efficient manner. Mirvac project engineer and site supervisor for My Ideal House Troy Hamer said there were over 30 suppliers for My Ideal House, and project managing the build brought Mirvac’s expertise to the fore. “There were many ‘firsts’ with this house and it was very rewarding to see everyone working together,” says Hamer. “Mirvac’s excellent relationships with our suppliers and subcontractors made it a smooth and efficient build.”
Many of My Ideal House’s best assets are hidden from sight. Take the charging station cleverly integrated into the kitchen cabinets, for example. Or the high-performance glass that makes airconditioning unnecessary, the thermally efficient solar panels hidden away on the flat roof that feed the Tesla battery in the double garage.
“People’s reaction to the home has been very exciting,” says Mirvac General Manager of Residential Development, Toby Long. “We knew we were building a special home, but people’s faces when they walk in confirms just how spectacular the space is.” says Long. What you see is a beautifully detailed house, that’s adaptable, warm and comfortable. But it is so much more than that, it is the realisation of a design competition aimed at creating a new blueprint for the suburban Australian home. Mission accomplished.
Mirvac acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Owners of the lands and waters of Australia, and we offer our respect to their Elders past and present.
Artwork: ‘Reimagining Country’, created by Riki Salam (Mualgal, Kaurareg, Kuku Yalanji) of We are 27 Creative.