Sarah Waller Architecture designed a forever home for a recently retired couple in the small coastal town of Tannum Sands on the Central East Coast of Queensland. Located on the beachfront, the house exudes the vibe of a luxury hotel, with its neutral tone, clean, pared-back aesthetic and natural setting reflecting the calm and elegance of a distinctly coastal lifestyle.

Tannum Sands  house

The brief for the architects was to create a family home that would act as a retreat to unwind and recharge in, and a place for the owners as well as their children and grandchildren to enjoy well into the future.

The external architecture comprises of timeless, crisp features, which are offset against the stunning natural backdrop of the beachfront location. From the street, the first floor gives the appearance of a timber box floating above the black façade of the ground level. As one approaches the entry, the modern aesthetic takes on a slightly more industrial feel with a textural off-form concrete wall and black steel entry framework.

These design elements continue through to the beach-side of the house where another timber-clad box frames the ocean view for the first floor master suite, with a commanding black steel portal frame below to support it. Black-clad boxes nestled into the architecture form the first floor ensuite and pool cabana.

With the oceanfront location being the highlight of the home, a connection with the outdoors is evident in the layout of the main living area, outdoor living and master suite, all of which take advantage of the water views. This connection to the ocean is not only celebrated in the living areas but is apparent as soon as one enters the front door where glimpses of the ocean are further revealed as one moves through the entry space.

With its generous layout and luxurious feel throughout, the master suite is one of the owners’ favourite places. Feeling more like a hotel suite, the master bedroom soaks in unobstructed ocean views with a sense of elegance and sophistication. The external black cladding of the ensuite pop-out continues inside the bedroom providing a striking contrast with the minimalist white interior. The bedroom space adopts a ‘less-is-more’ approach, with the monochrome style continued in the ensuite with black tapware, a matt black vanity and black feature tiles, which are offset against the crisp white walls and bathware.

“In keeping with the resort-style design philosophy, all the bathrooms in the home are private relaxing spaces. They have the vibe of a luxury hotel – I wanted each bathroom to be a place to unwind after a busy day,” says Sarah. 

Tannum Sands Aio Shower

“The shower is particularly important in my designs. I chose Methven’s Aurajet Aio showers for every bathroom because apart from it being stylish, innovative and easy to clean, it’s also extremely high performance delivering an invigorating shower experience. As architects, we always specify Methven’s Aio in all of our projects and it’s my personal shower of choice in my own home where I actually own five of them. I am fortunate to be able to demonstrate the great functionality of the showers to all my clients when they come for presentations. They are then easily convinced that this is the shower for them.”

Anchored against the back wall of the living area, the kitchen is in sync with both the dining and living areas, as well as the outdoors. With views out across the living and pool area, the kitchen is the true heart of the house, around which all other living spaces are centred. Whilst a coastal vibe is maintained throughout the house, the kitchen contributes a sense of luxury with a marble-look benchtop and striking timber and black cabinetry.

The dining area is generous in both plan and ceiling height, which makes it the perfect area to bring the family together around the large dining table. The stunning feature pendant, large scale artwork and dynamic, full height slot window enhance the verticality and luxuriousness of space, which is also open to the courtyard and beach beyond. The restraint and delicacy of the vertical slot window, as well as its perfect alignment with the palm tree outside, make it a unique architectural feature.

With Tannum Sands, a sense of timeless modernism has been achieved, which suits the site in a relaxed and elegant way and will stand the test of time well into the future.

The Methven Aio shower collection is exclusive to Reece Bathrooms in Australia.