However what lies beneath the nearly 100 year old prominent home is an award winning alteration that has discretely accelerated the residence into the 21st century and raised a few eyebrows.
In a subterranean shelter design that would impress Bruce Wayne, Allan McIntosh director of Parnell-based Buildology Ltd. has accommodated four car garaging underground, providing the ultimate hideaway for the owner's car collection.
Allan said constructing a four car garage in a heritage area was no easy task…
"The existing streetscape consisted of a historic marble retaining wall with a single car garage which were to remain untouched. Clever design allowed us to transform the existing single car garage into the entry. The new garage would be neatly tucked away out of sight, with the streetscape and front façade of the house remaining untouched", he said.
This year's panel of judges described the project as a 'brave approach to renovation'. And it's not hard to see why. The judges remarked on the trouble Allan had taken to ensure the house was represented in a way that would have originally been intended, including "a dramatic stair proceeding from the bunker to enable the owner to enter this early 20th century house in a 21st century fashion".
Within the home itself, Allan's interior work creates a greater sense of connection between each of the generously sized formal rooms. Hard and heavy detailing has been softened through the introduction of white paint, and carpets have been stripped back to reveal beautiful timber flooring through the entry and hallway. A play of black and white contrast between ceilings, exposed beams, floors and trims brings new energy into the home and enhances its age and historic character.
ADNZ CEO Astrid Andersen said McIntosh’s design is a delightful response to the brief.
"This design really has a talking point and is an outstanding example of successfully defying the seemingly impossible. Congratulations to Allan McIntosh for his extraordinary design which provides for the client’s requirements, while respecting the integrity of the home and its neighbourhood", Astrid said.
For more information on Allan McIntosh visit: http://www.adnz.org.nz/profile/allanmcintosh