Client Brief: Additions, Alterations and Pool house

The client requested a renovation of the main house which was built in 1957. The heritage listed house was a well designed building but limited in its functionality and parts were in disrepair. This house was built in Johannesburg, on the western side of the Westcliff ridge on a rock outcrop. Underpinning was also required to the western side of the building due to the subsiding of a small section of the foundation.

The client required a substantial renovation of the entire house and felt strongly about maintaining the architectural integrity of the main house. The pool house and main house needed to form a single unit in terns of it’s style.

The objective was to create an integrated, open and light living and sleeping quarters


The objective was to create an integrated, open and light living and sleeping quarters. The 180 degree views around the house was partly ignored and needed to be addressed. Originally the 3 bedrooms were positioned off an internal passage, facing north with a separate shower room, bathrooms and toilet across the hallway on the southern side. Only the main bedroom had an “en suite” bathroom. The need was to have all the bedrooms en-suite and the sweeping views to be fully utilised.

The material choice of the exterior was to be keep it in line with the existing 50’s style which included the brown face-brick brick details and adding steel and glass to give it a contemporary look. Balustrades needed to be reused as it has historic value, which was confirmed by heritage. The interior was to be kept to the minimal to create a sober white space for his art collection. Wooden doors and floors were the only choice, with white walls throughout. Double glazing was required for is insolation benefits.

The external roof needed to be utilised by using the driveway as a catchment area. The rainwater needed to be stored below the driveway in water tanks for reuse as grey water and gardening where possible. All plant material to be indigenous to reduce water consumption. External solar geysers were also a requirement to reduce dependency on the grid. A new separate guest parking area with entrance area was required at the main gate with its own gate closing the area from the main house.