Noosa’s best architecture honoured at State Awards

Domik won the state award for residential architecture. Photo: Scott Burrows.

By Abbey Cannan

The Noosa region has picked up three state awards for it’s brilliant commercial and residential architecture at the Australian Institute of Architects’ Queensland Architecture Awards.

The jury, made up of renowned architects and academics from across the state, awarded more than 20 projects across 14 categories including residential, commercial, sustainable architecture and urban design.

Jury Chair, and Director of COX Architecture, Richard Coulson described the winning designs as contributing to the progression of architecture in the State.

“Each of the awarded projects reflect a response to the environment in their own way,” Mr Coulson said.

“The projects include opportunities that allow many members of the Queensland public to benefit from good architectural design.

“They include innovation in technology and materials balanced with a pragmatic response to climate –  a hallmark of Queensland Architecture.”

The Sunshine Beach Surf Lifesaving Club was recognised with the commercial architecture award going to Push and Andrew Bock Architecture.

The state jury said the new building has created a sophisticated yet casual offering and a revitalised experience for a broader public, all while embodying the community spirit of club and connection to the coastline.

Push director Paul Curran said he felt great about winning the award.

“It’s a team effort and I’m really happy that we were able to get a state award for a regional area and a small club,” he said.

Mr Curran said the location of the club felt iconic.

“It’s an important landmark for both the community and for tourism in the Noosa area, so we were able to produce a really good facility,” he said.

“I worked in collaboration with an architect from Noosa, Andrew Bock, and he’s had a lot of good feedback from locals about the improvement of the club and how successful it has been.”

Mill Hill Retreat by Phorm Architecture + Design took out the state award for residential architecture, with the jury calling the project a “thoughtfully curated family home carefully positioned on a remarkable site”.

Phorm Architecture + Design director Paul Hotston said it was an honour to win the award.

“Each year, the field of new houses that get produced by architects through the whole state is phenomenal,” he said.

“So, even just to make the short list is an honour, but to go forward to nationals, means that we take a bit of Queensland forward in the nationals, and we’re really proud to carry that banner.

“It’s a really great reflection on the project, the effort of the client, and the effort of all team members that have been a part of it.

“All the many hands that come together at a job site and build these houses, it’s a pat on the back for everybody, not just the architects.”

Mr Hotston said the Sunshine Coast offered the most amazing landscapes.

“This was really an opportunity to work into a place which was almost untouched,” he said.

“We were really careful to try and find a way that the house to meet the landscape.

“It’s also designed so that as you move through the house you’re engaged with the landscape in particular way.

“There’s a sort of idea, like choreography almost, it’s like a dance between the house and the landscape.

“As you move through the house it’s almost like experiencing what it would be like if the house wasn’t around you.”

Mr Hotston said they were only able to do these types of project with a client’s trust.

“With winning the state award, it gives everyone in the process the confidence and sort of acknowledges the risk taking that goes into doing something a little bit different,” he said.

The second state residential architecture award went to Domik by Noel Robinson Architects.

The jury said Domik was a truly unique home located on a spectacular site next to Noosa National Park.

“Tasked with a once in a lifetime brief and budget, Noel Robinson Architects has delivered a highly bespoke and sophisticated home,” they said.

“This house challenges the typical beach side house and pushes the envelope of unique architectural luxury.

“The interior planning directs all views to the ocean and a circular stair offers an oculus skylight to draw light deep into the floor plate.”