Tamarama Tea House


Location: Tamarama Beach, Sydney, Australia
Year: 2010
Type: Concept
Status: Concept
Materials: Copper, steel



This project is a coffee/tea house located on the east coast of Australia, at a beach called Tamarama. This project aims to reject the commonly perceived notion that a building on the ocean front must have wide unobstructed views. Instead an alternative approach of utilizing framed vistas is exployed in this project. All the apertures in the building are framing a specific view: the ocean; the sky and the horizon. Through this framing device, the occupants of the building could perceive a range of spatial experiences. The site is right by the cliff edge so it was possible to cantilever the building over the edge to make the framed ocean view more dramatic. The shape of the building is governed by the boundries of the site and the need to frame the varied views. The exterior form is inspired by the many ship wrecks that dot the shores of the east coast. The segmentation of the building pays hommage to the giant carcases of the once great mernchant ships with their massive wooden ribs.Wooden ships used copper sheathing as a way to protect against marine worms and weed growth which threatened the structural integrity and speed of the ships.

Similar copper cladding is used on the building to protect it against the harsh coastal elements.Access to the observation deck is gained through two sets of stairs on either side of the entrance. The stairs are open to the sky and a bed of beach sand lines the ground underneath. The observation deck can be used during less windy days if one wishes to sit outside.
The back of the building facing the cliff is tapered to allow better access around the back of the site and also serves to emphasis the skywindows. The ocean windows are strategically rotated towards the ocean for a more direct view of the water and maybe the occasional kayaker.
Access to the observation deck is gained through two sets of stairs on either side of the entrance. The stairs are open to the sky and a bed of beach sand lines the ground underneath. The observation deck can be used during less windy days if one wishes to sit outside.