Duplex in The City

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Urban Living: a Dwelling with Two Apartments in Sydney
Equivalent to the brownstones of New York, this interwar duplex is a humane scale solution to housing in the Sydney city fringes.

Shoulder to shoulder with other apartment buildings, the original 1920’s two-storey flats were transformed into a four storey block with a basement carpark and cellar, a ground floor garden apartment and a two-storey penthouse.

Just forty-percent of the existing structure was demolished, mainly the dysfunctional rooms at the back of the property, which were replaced by a modern four-storey structure.

The front of the property, with its original Queen Anne leadlight windows, liver toned brickwork and timber shingles, was left intact to preserve the building’s consistency with the prevailing style of the street. No one would believe that behind those refined front rooms the apartments would morph into modern open living spaces with generous terraces that allow the inhabitants to admire the views of the city, populated with skyscrapers designed by Renzo Piano, Sir Norman Foster and Ingenhoven Architects, and enjoy glimpses of Sydney Harbour beyond.

The duality of the design also reflects the personalities of the residents: urbane and loaded with old world culture and family history, yet passionate about modern art, architecture and urban living. Here the interior architecture plays greater role than in a more spacious suburban setting.

The use of every millimeter has been carefully planned to condense the content of a large house into this city pad, with an eclectic collection of furniture and art; the skilful joinery design by Project Architect, Jane McNeill aimed to provide as much storage as possible for the owners, while lending elegance to the interiors in touches such as the dressing table in the dressing room.

The cultured owners could not part with their books, so Jane created for them a library and study area with room for a comfortable arm chair, tucked beside the Jacobs Ladder stair that climbs to a glazed roof hatch and a landscaped roof terrace and a spa pool with a city skyline backdrop.

© Justin...
The scissor balconies of the back elevation are angled to offer side views while maintaining the building’s rear...
Sir Norman Foster’s unfinished tower, the Art Gallery of New South Wales awaiting their SAANA Architects additions,...
All floors have a view. The main bedroom bed could be linked to the city office with a flying fox.
“Mirror mirror… who in this realm is the fairest of them all?” Jane McNeill’s masterful joinery is hard to beat with...
The internal stair of the penthouse needs to compete with a lift, and so provides and pleasurable and senusual...
Spiral staircases have a unique characteristic in creating a rigid and self-supporting form that requires no beams or...
The best aspect of this stair is how the balustrade is overlaid with the original mid 1920s window, retaining its...
Bookcases and a television blend in amongst the owner’s collected art, including paintings by Euan McLeod and Sali...
A small library where one can read and contemplate the sky through a porthole window or glazed roofhatch.
The monochrome kitchen opens out onto a terrace.
Also with city views, the master ensuite bathroom features a graphicly angular corian benchtop, Lea Ceramica tiled...
The main bathroom is located in the 1920s part of the apartment and so features metro style ceramic tiles with the...
The original frontage of the duplex apartments, with their shingle skirted bow windows and a new entry stair, wedged...
© Edward...
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