Breezway Altair louvre windows were installed on large openings in a country home located in Wherrol Flat, New South Wales to naturally cool the interior space.

‘Benbulla’ was designed by the small practice of Austin McFarland Architects located in Wingham on the Mid North Coast. The firm recently won the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) NSW Country Division Award for Residential Architecture – New, for the Wherrol Flat project.

Featuring a very simple plan but rich in finishes and textures, the home is located on a stunning property with its connection to the landscape being an important design element. According to the AIA awards jury, the home “encourages you to breathe quietly, slow down and just appreciate the delicate balance offered between landscape and shelter”.

Austin McFarland Architects attribute a major part of the project’s success to their desire to use locally available materials. The Wingham based Dry Press Brickworks created a special colour brick in their ‘47’ range, which was used for both the walls and some internal floors in the home. By selecting finishes from local suppliers, the architects were able to reduce overall costs without compromising on the quality.

Timber, which was extensively used in the project for its practicality and beauty, was also sourced locally. The local timber mill supplied all the Blackbutt timber weatherboard cladding and hardwood floor boards. The windows and doors were also made from Blackbutt.

Altair louvre windows by Breezway were installed on the large openings, which in association with the shallow plan allowed for the home to be cooled with only cross ventilation and ceiling fans. The house is completely ‘off grid’ and is self-sufficient for its power, water and waste processing needs.

Image: The ‘Benbulla’ house (Photographer: Alec M Hamilton)