The subject site is located in the beautiful natural setting of Rainbow Shores near Double Island Point. The site is a few hundred metres from the water, sandy and densely vegetated. It smells like beach, sand and holidays.

Our clients in this case were two families and therefore their brief was for a beach house that can be used by two separate parties and provide privacy and areas for reclusiveness.

‘Saltwater’ consequently was designed as a series of pavilions clustered around the central circulation spine. The pavilions were carefully sited to retain all mature vegetation and to create courtyard spaces. One of these central courtyards accommodates a pool, which is overlooked by the lounge area.

The separation of the pavilions provides the separation between living and sleeping areas and privacy between the two bedroom wings, each with its own bathroom.

To reduce the environmental impact and to be sensitive to the natural beauty and fragility of the site was a primary design and construction focus. The design strategy of creating individual pavilions allowed retention of all mature vegetation. Light weight construction materials were chosen for their low embodied energies and the raised ‘off ground’ construction further reduced the environmental footprint.

‘Saltwater’ continuous to provide joy to the owners and also numerous families who rent the house for holiday accommodation. For more information on holiday letting please visit:

Completed: 2004

Construction: Rainbow Beach Builders, Alan McFarlane

Structural Engineer: John Batterham Engineering