Architecture

Family home upgraded with solar power, extra space and secret rooms

Family home upgraded with sola...
The Grant House extension features solar panels and a rainwater collection system
The Grant House extension features solar panels and a rainwater collection system
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Grant House is located in Melbourne, Australia
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Grant House is located in Melbourne, Australia
Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
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Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
Grant House now consists of the original home and a new building at the rear (shown here)
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Grant House now consists of the original home and a new building at the rear (shown here)
Grant House's new extension includes a dining area downstairs 
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Grant House's new extension includes a dining area downstairs 
Grant House's side entrance will now be used as the main entrance
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Grant House's side entrance will now be used as the main entrance
Grant House's new extension includes a dining area downstairs
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Grant House's new extension includes a dining area downstairs
Stairs lead up to the bedroom in Grant House's new extension
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Stairs lead up to the bedroom in Grant House's new extension
Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
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Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
The Grant House extension features solar panels and a rainwater collection system
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The Grant House extension features solar panels and a rainwater collection system
The new kitchen in Grant House's extension 
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The new kitchen in Grant House's extension 
Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
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Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
Closeup of the steel cladding on Grant House's extension
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Closeup of the steel cladding on Grant House's extension
The new kitchen in Grant House's extension
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The new kitchen in Grant House's extension
Closeup of the steel cladding on Grant House's extension
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Closeup of the steel cladding on Grant House's extension
Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
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Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
The new kitchen in Grant House's extension, facing the garden
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The new kitchen in Grant House's extension, facing the garden
Grant House's extension also includes a living room
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Grant House's extension also includes a living room
Another shot of Grant House's living room
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Another shot of Grant House's living room
Grant House's new extension is light-filled and modern
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Grant House's new extension is light-filled and modern
Grant House's new extension is located to the rear of the original home
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Grant House's new extension is located to the rear of the original home
Grant House's new extension includes a bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area upstairs
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Grant House's new extension includes a bedroom, bathroom, and lounge area upstairs
Grant House's new extension features a living room downstairs
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Grant House's new extension features a living room downstairs
Grant House's extension is finished in white 
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Grant House's extension is finished in white 
The kitchen units are integrated into the staircase in Grant House's extension 
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The kitchen units are integrated into the staircase in Grant House's extension 
Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
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Grant House also has a new deck area in the garden
Grant House sports double-glazed windows 
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Grant House sports double-glazed windows 
View of the Grant House's extension 
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View of the Grant House's extension 
Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
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Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
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Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
The parents' bedroom in Grant House
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The parents' bedroom in Grant House
Another shot of the parents' bedroom in Grant House
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Another shot of the parents' bedroom in Grant House
The kitchen unit in Grant House can be moved to reveal a cellar 
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The kitchen unit in Grant House can be moved to reveal a cellar 
Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
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Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
Another shot of the parents' bedroom in Grant House
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Another shot of the parents' bedroom in Grant House
Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
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Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
View inside Grant House's original home
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View inside Grant House's original home
The old house has become a separate living space for the owners' teenage son
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The old house has become a separate living space for the owners' teenage son
Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
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Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
View of Grant House's garden 
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View of Grant House's garden 
Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
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Grant House's new bathroom includes a bath, vanity unit, and toilet
Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
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Grant House features a new side entrance that is deliberately imposing as the owners previously had a break-in
Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the open position 
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Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the open position 
Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the closed position
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Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the closed position
Grant House's kitchen unit is placed on rollers and can be moved to reveal a cellar entrance
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Grant House's kitchen unit is placed on rollers and can be moved to reveal a cellar entrance

Austin Maynard Architects produces some of the most interesting house extensions around, like the Cut Paw Paw House, and Dorman House, for example. Grant House is similarly ambitious and sees the firm upgrade an aging family home by adding more living space, improving its sustainability and creating a couple of hidden rooms.

Grant House is located in Melbourne, Australia, and extends a single-story home that Austin Maynard Architects says had a poorly-designed layout dating back to a 1980s-era renovation. The firm decided to add another two-story building at the rear and created a new side entrance too. This is very secure and imposing-looking by design, as the owners previously had a break-in.

The old part of the house has now become the teenage son's. He has his own bedroom, living room and bathroom, so it should continue to be a useful space for him even as he grows into adulthood. It also has some fun additions.

"In the old part of the house the teenagers bedroom took advantage of the high ceiling with a suspended platform bed space and a lounging net," says Austin Maynard Architects. "Above the bed a hatch leads up to a secret ply-lined roof space, a whole secret room his parent will likely never visit. Exactly what a young teenager needs?"

The new kitchen in Grant House's extension
The new kitchen in Grant House's extension

The new two-story addition at the rear of the old home is light-filled and open. The upstairs is taken up by the parents' room, a lounge area with a mezzanine reading platform, and a bathroom. The downstairs consists of a living room, dining room and kitchen, while a large deck is also installed outside.

In a novel touch, a section of the kitchen's island rolls along tracks to reveal a hidden cellar that's accessed by ladder.

"In the initial brief the owner asked for a basement," adds the firm. "On a narrow site, stairs take up valuable floor area. A creative solution was to hide the entrance to the cellar in the floor, under the sliding island bench. Like a train carriage, the storage section of the island bench rolls along tracks to extend the bench when the cellar is not in use, or nestle beneath when access is required. The cellar is completely hidden and secret, unless you are actually using it. A perforated aluminum sheet can be used over the entrance for safety and ventilation."

Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the open position 
Grant House's kitchen unit, shown in the open position 

Quite a bit of work has gone into making Grant House more energy efficient. Low-maintenance materials were used where possible and high-performance insulation is installed throughout. Additionally, solar panels reduce grid-based electricity usage and rainwater is stored and used to flush toilets and irrigate the garden.

Source: Austin Maynard Architects

2 comments
ChairmanLMAO
This little house is amazing. Some kids are so lucky! If it was my house, you can be sure that the "hand of Ash" would be holding a Boomstick!
Nik
My first thought was that the projecting corrugated sheet-metal on the ends of the building will be a liability, if they ever have strong winds. First they will create a lot of noise, and second, if the wind is very strong, it could result in the sheets being ripped off entirely. Its not just for fun, that sheet metal suppliers also supply wraparound corner sections to eliminate what has been perpetrated here. Architects! Too often, they forget the basics in their endeavours to ''create a statement!''