Kangaroo Island, South Australia
studio LFA designed the KI House as a private residential compound, nestled in the landscape of the pristine wilderness of Kangaroo Island. This island, one of Australia’s most exclusive wilderness retreat, features soaring cliffs, dense forests, towering sand dunes, wetlands and massive stretches of bone white sandy beaches. It is situated 112 km (70 mi) southwest of Adelaide forming the entrance to the Gulf Saint Vincent.
The design of the house is arranged in five individual one and two-story pavilions for three generations of a single family. Each pavilion is positioned on the site at different elevations in order to take advantage of the most impressive views, to promote cross ventilation while impeding prevailing winds, and ultimately forming a series of distinctive and intimate courtyards.
The primary courtyard, which organizes the public and private realms, is evident as the main organizing feature of the property. Settled within this courtyard is a reflecting cooling sallow pool containing a rainwater cistern, which is linked to other water tanks throughout the property. Social spaces, i.e. public rooms surround the central courtyard while outer pavilions are reserved for more private uses defining more secluded courtyard gardens.
A parking court fronts the Main Residential Pavilion at an elevated level topped by an open wood trellis which reserves space for a future two level pavilion garage expansion with additional storage space and guest accommodations. A wide veranda filters views from the Main Pavilion to the north, east, and west sides also providing shade during the summer months, while small courtyards are formed by the south and central pavilions.
An axial boardwalk crosses a reflecting pool at the center of the Main House façade resulting in a perfectly symmetrical composition flanked by traditional verandas on each side of the structure. This area becomes the central hub for all activities in the house including living, dining, and kitchen areas with a glazed façade to the north and a stone façade providing relief from the afternoon sun to the south. Pavilions to the east and west are similar in layout and roof profile. Shallow, cantilevered verandas wrap around the structures with a front porch that can be open or closed depending on the season.
Primary architectural style is a mixture including traditional vernacular infused with contemporary forms and materials forming a mix of roof profiles influenced by local precedents and other Caribbean counterparts. Constructed of local stone, with fire-rated wood decks and standing seam metal roofs the building’s feature exposed wood rafters with designs differing depending on your location within the compound. Gardens on the roof and terraces purify air and provide as water collection aides allowing the KI Residence to conserve its natural resources.
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