Xavier by Bryant Alsop

Xavier is a project designed by Bryant Alsop. Located at the end of a dead-end street, Xavier breaks away from its neighbourhood context by eliminating a front fence – a simple gesture that allows the site to spatially appropriate well beyond its title boundaries. The house then, in this context, becomes the physical barrier between the public and private realms – a layered, folding screen. Photography by Emily Bartlett.


White painted brickwork folds in to identify the entrance and upon entering the house, a large, light-filled entry creates a moment for residents and guests to pause, take off their shoes and take in the house and landscape.

Natural materials (timber, wool, marble) and soft tones throughout bring a calmness as you move through and up into the house; north-facing windows allow natural light to penetrate deep into the living zones.

Programmatically, the house divides into fairly traditional zones -children upstairs; parents downstairs at the front, and living spaces opening onto a north-facing lawn & entertainment area. Service areas are pushed to the southern edge of the plan allowing maximum aspect to the north.

The project has a strong focus on sustainable systems – solar power, heat pump HWS and heat-recovery heating/cooling; as well as employing good passive design principles, low-VOC products and high-performance glazing.

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