Nestled in the Sydney suburb of Paddington, this gorgeous home’s one-storey heritage façade hides a pretty incredible split-level renovation behind. Home to interior designer Nina Maya, who is using it to showcase her business (and act as a family abode), the house is called ‘The Glasshouse’ in a nod to the material that was integral to the transformation.
Lack of windows and the subsequent lack of light is a common problem in heritage homes, and this one was no different. “In many ways, the remodel was dictated by its challenges, the biggest being its dark, narrow living area. The addition of the central staircase created a column that could be fully glazed on two sides to let in light, while saving floor space,” says Nina of the home’s statement feature.
“I like to start any design with a clean base, so the ability to remove distracting frames from the view of the bamboo in our courtyard, was perfect,” says Nina who chose Stegbar’s Alumiere range for the home as it allows for larger expanses of glass with smaller frames.
Given the home’s dense urban location, privacy regulations were one of the main design obstacles to overcome. Nina specified architectural automated louvres, that obscure the interior from neighbouring properties, as a solution. This negated the need for a screen across the lower section of windows while creating a striking silhouette at the rear of the home.
Another innovative solution to privacy issues can be seen in the master ensuite, where an Alumiere fixed lite window with translucent glazing sits behind a double sink and mirrors. “A lot of elements of the Glasshouse are not as they seem. On first look, you would assume that the room is artificially lit, but when you look closer, you can see how the light changes with the clouds and time of day. It’s a small detail that adds unexpected interest to the room,” says Nina.
“The Glasshouse gets its name from being more than just a house with a lot of windows, it has glass at its core and throughout, from the two-storey mirrors to the subtle shower screens and the translucent windows to the fully glazed lightwell. It’s amazing what you can do with glass when you work with the right options.”
Photography: Nicole England