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House a perfect match for its stunning site

House a perfect match for its stunning site
The three dimensional facade expresses the forces of the volcanic contours reflecting the natural landscape. The roof hugs the cliff and levels out to cantilever dramatically over the water with operable windows creating the balcony.

A project, which has just won an award in the housing category at the Auckland New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA) architecture awards, was built on a cliff, an archaeological site, on the edge of a volcanic crater and with difficult access.

But instead of difficulties architect Wendy Shacklock saw the beauty of the site that had also attracted the clients.

“Fundamental to my process is rapport. I listen to clients, learn from them and apply a cross-disciplined approach in achieving the agreed objectives. This project was a process in working through the hurdles.”

She conceived the house as one large shelter wrapping around the land.

Inside is a series of interconnected spaces with the main floor of the building conceived as a continuous landscape that flows from the living areas to the terrace, lawn and outdoor room.

The three dimensional facade expresses the forces of the volcanic contours reflecting the natural landscape.

The roof hugs the cliff and levels out to cantilever dramatically over the water with operable windows creating the balcony.

“I built in the intrinsic feel the site had, that you wouldn’t believe that you were in the middle of a big city.”

“I managed to make the site feel larger because the house is mainly on one level. This way it doesn’t feel as if it is ‘perched’ on a cliff.”

Wendy also gained a second award at the 2019 Waikato/Bay of Plenty Architecture Awards in the category of housing alterations and additions .

The project revolved around a Lockwood home and extends living and accommodation to better enjoy views, sun and shelter.

“A checker board of spaces has been created. By conserving the old I have economically extended the size and usability of the holiday house, improved passive heating and cooling and moderated prevailing winds by providing a natural windbreak with the living room extension and alternative deck options,” explains Wendy.

The projects are indicative of the extremely personal hands on approach Wendy takes with every project.

“When my clients engage me it is me they get working on their project from start to finish,” she says.

House a perfect match for its stunning site

“I get very involved with my clients and love working on unique projects. Every job is completely different.”

It’s no surprise then that Wendy, who has had various role with the NZIA over the years and offers her clients over 25 years experience, works nation-wide on a variety of projects.

Many of her clients are by word of mouth or repeat clients, some of whom she has worked for since she began her practice.

“You really develop some close and great relationships with clients and it’s a pleasure to work with them on more and more ambitious projects as you gain their trust,” she says.

Wendy, who has won numerous NZIA awards over her career, has more recently branched out into multi storey apartment projects as Auckland intensifies.

“It’s the way Auckland is going and is changing the way people live. It’s very exciting.”

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