As a new category at the
Home is definitely where the heart is in this category and the outstanding interiors shortlisted certainly inspire creativity and provide templates for better living. However, the winner of The Interior Space category, as chosen by our illustrious jury, is an exceptional celebration of talent and visionary design where the home is appropriate to function and site, inventive in its form, sustainable and a triumph in its realisation.
As winner of the category, Highlands House by Luke Moloney Architecture is a country residence located in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales that is sophisticated and elegant, spacious and modern – but most of all so very beautiful.
This is a home where art enhances design and the surrounding landscape vistas create a calming backdrop to family life. The interior is thoughtful and layered and offers intimate places for individual contemplation or spaces large enough for a crowd.
As for Highlands House, it is positioned on top of a hill, divided into three barn-like pavilions that are linked by an art gallery. Each pavilion has its purpose, living space, the owner’s bedroom suite and garage and guest suite.
Materiality is concise and robust with pre-cast concrete panels for the structure. Internally, varying ceiling heights curate the spatial experience: lower for a more human dimension and higher to contain a void for a sense of largesse.
While the home becomes a sanctuary inside, it is the thoughtful details that make the difference, such as designing the internal rooms to visually connect with the horizon. It is inclusions such as this that make Highlands House an exemplar.
Sustainability is integral and has been prioritised, with the home designed to be ‘off-grid’. Other initiatives include solar, shading for summer, thermal mass for climate control, rainwater harvesting and fire-retardant measures for protection against embers and bushfires.
Highlands House is a worthy winner of the inaugural The Interior Space category and epitomises great interior design that will stand the test of time and age gracefully. It is a home that is at home in its surroundings, provides the ultimate in cool, clean interior design and a place for living well.
Perhaps the last word on Highlands House should go to Luke Moloney: “It’s been one of those deeply satisfying jobs which was always more than just building a house. It was about personal connection, reflection, taking time to try and do better, and making a building that, through long consideration, aims to do the right thing by a beautiful corner of the world.”