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Sydney’s North Shore is known for its beautiful leafy parks, streets, and gardens. Taking advantage of the lush, green outdoors, more and more open living spaces are replacing the old-fashioned McMansions and California bungalows in the area. Allen Key House by Architect Prineas is one of these new residences, featuring a beautiful modern space immersed in sunshine and nature.

Allen Key House by Architect PrineasAllen Key House by Architect Prineas

Allen Key House

Allen Key House is a reconfiguration of a 1930s California bungalow. The brief required the designers at Architect Prineas to rearrange the existing structure to emphasise the kitchen and connect the indoor spaces to the garden.

There were a lot of constraints in this brief. Firstly, the budget was tight. Secondly, the designers were required to keep the existing structure and its original features. Additionally, the lack of ventilation and access to sunlight experienced by the old bungalow made it even harder for the designers to fulfill the brief.

A series of simple yet very sophisticated solutions were made. The designers implemented a shed-like design that followed the existing roof lines and was inexpensive to construct. Further interventions and alterations of the roof were carried out to bring in more light to the living space below.

The designers extended the house, annexing new living quarters that included a kitchen, living, and dining rooms in an open plan. A glazed link was added to connect the old and new structures. Thus, two internal courtyards were created, promoting airflow and sunlight into the architecture.

Allen Key House by Architect PrineasAlley Key House by Architect PrineasAllen Key House by Architect Prineas

The end result is a sun-drenched, spacious home with the living spaces revolving around the kitchen. Tall and large windows are used to open up the house, connecting the interior to the lush garden outside. The colour palette is primarily a crisp white, contrasted by the black steelwork of doors and windows. The rooms are furnished with understated furniture featuring clean lines, bright timber, and small pastel mint touches.

Many consider constraints to be barriers and restrictions impeding creativity. However, the designers at Architect Prineas took it in their stride and created a delightful space out of the very constraints that they faced. The Allen Key House is a perfect example of merging the old with the new – a masterful resolution to a tricky puzzle of budget and structural limitations.

Check out architectprineas.com.au for more information. Photographed by Chris Warnes.