Beachport House

2013-2015 - New Residence, Beachport, SA

Design of a contemporary two-storey residence on beachfront property in the beautiful South Australian town of Beachport.

My client’s brief is to create an oasis of peace and calm maximising ocean views with minimalist architectural aesthetic both externally and internally. Other key criteria include materials that can survive the harsh marine environment with low maintenance materials being essential. With a waterfront north–east aspect, large cantilevered white aluminum curved overhangs have been incorporated to provide fantastic water views, shading to the glazing and protection from the fierce south and west winds.

Heated polished concrete floors, white walls and a rich ochre coloured rammed earth wall are key elements of the design.

Sustainability measures such as appropriate orientation following passive design principles , in ground water tanks, 4 kW roof mounted solar pv, LED and low energy lighting, low e double glazing, heated concrete floor slabs, feature stabilised earth wall as heat sink in winter and water efficient fittings have all been incorporated into the design.

Site Area
809 m2
House Area
438 m2
Construction Commenced
August 2015

Project Team
Client
Lyn White & Jane Brookshaw
Architect & Interior Designer
Carolyn McLean Architect
Structural & Civil Engineering
StructureA - Chris Sucui
Main Contractor
MacGregor Builders
Rammed Earth Wall
Stabilised Earth

A key element of the Beachport house design is the integration of a six-metre high-rammed earth wall that depicts the red ochre colours of the Australian desert – where the clients have spent many years and have a real affinity for. The wall will divide the ‘living’ part of the house from the garage, boat and caravan area and will be the first thing you see when you enter the house. The wall comprises a mix of local Naracoorte Henschke sand, 10% cement and the ochre oxide to create a richly coloured and textured wall. Due to the nature of the construction, subtle waves appear across the wall face as well as markings where the plywood formwork was connected. This is all part of the beauty of the construction and adds to the story of the wall and its makers.

The wall will also act as a heat sink in winter, combining with the electrically heated polished concrete floors to retain warmth inside during the colder months. In summer, the cooled slab will work with the mass of the wall to keep the house cool and comfortable with no need for AC in the house at all.

The design aesthetic is minimal with light grey double glazing, white alucobond and finely polished concrete slabs as the palette.

The stepped east facade was a direct response to the south-easterly breezes, protecting the upper level deck from these winds. The extension of the roof down the west wall as a ‘hangar’ type arrangement was to protect the interior from the afternoon western sun and strong westerly winds.

The Beachport house is sophisticated, minimalist and combines the client’s two loves of the sea and the desert.


Thank you so much for being our Architect. Looking forward to building your beautiful design. Thank you again for all that you have done and put into this amazing build.