Tusculum Street by Smart Design Studio won the Residential Award jointly with Potts Point Apartment by Anthony Gill Architects at the 2012 Australian Interior Design Awards.
This exciting renovation and extension of a turn-of-the-century terrace house focuses on a grand and gracefully spiralling stair that forms the pivotal junction of the old and new parts of the house. The staircase, spanning the width of the building, features delicate fan-like steel treads that are cantilevered from the central steel post and wind their way past six split levels, offset between the old and new sides of the house. Spacious living areas and private zones open out from each side of the stair with one area per level alternating between the old and new building. Finishes in the old portion of the house are contemporary and elegant in a Stripped Classical style with deep flush skirting boards, mannered panelled doors and wide timber floorboards, all in gloss white paint and offset by richly coloured set plaster walls. The mainly white extension with the same gloss white floorboards features a black stained timber-boarded joinery element across three levels. A thirteen-metre clear span wall of sliding doors overlooks a pocket garden. There is a sense of rooms unfolding within rooms and connecting spaces and interdependency in the house, providing a richly layered experience and reflecting the complexity of a contemporary urban lifestyle.
The Tusculum Street renovation and extension is an eloquent contemporary design with a language that speaks to the present day. From macro planning to micro detailing, highly considered design is evident. The sculptural carving of space, skilled location of the stair and the restrained and sophisticated use of colour and materials contribute to the success of this residential interior. Glass walls enclose and define the interior, yet allow spaces to be visually borrowed to the limits of the site boundaries. The orientation of elements within the narrow plan allows the interior spaces to be infused with light. The execution of landscape elements subtly complements and extends the interiors. The transition from the original to the new building has been handled subtly and with skill and sophistication through continuity of materials, detail and colour. This is a beautifully crafted and skilfully executed interior design that has produced a contemporary, comfortable and livable residence.
This project also won the Colour in Residential Design award.