Little Austinmer Beach on the NSW south-coast is a small piece of paradise not yet over-run by developers or investors. We visited last week to cover a house by the Sydney architect Alex Symes. Coincidentally we photographed and reviewed Symes' previous house at nearby Austinmer Beach for the first online issue of Vision magazine exactly a year ago. We were impressed then and impressed once again to see Symes double teaming with builder Matt Jolley who knows how to craft a house better than most.
Recycling an existing dwelling and turning a donkey into a goat isn't all that difficult but this house is a brilliant example of adaptive re-use. It's the story of the donkey that is now a thoroughbred racehorse. And in amongst some pretty tame performers it's obvious that a few people have cared enough not to simply splash money, but tune a house to its site and climate. And of course the winners are the clients and neighbourhood who receive a beautifully sustainable house that echoes to the sea and the Illawarra Escarpment like few others.
The full selection of views and story will run in the June issue of Vision out a little later this month. Symes' first house in the area is in the first issue of Vision and can be viewed on this link: http://joom.ag/2dLb