A holiday home that drinks in the views

VIEW FROM A HILL: This modular home was designed by Modscape and positioned within the landscape to take in the dramatic surrounding views. Photos: John Madden.
VIEW FROM A HILL: This modular home was designed by Modscape and positioned within the landscape to take in the dramatic surrounding views. Photos: John Madden.

Stretched across a ridge near Orange, New South Wales is this stunning modular home, positioned here to follow the lay of the land and take in the dramatic views across the valley towards Mount Canobolas.

While the 190-hectare working farm in Kangaroobie could be described as tranquil, the remote location was enough reason for the building to be constructed offsite in a controlled factory environment, thereby eliminating potential weather delays and erase the task of coordinating multiple trades - difficult in a rural setting that's close to four hours' drive from the permanent residence of the Sydney-based clients.

Designed and constructed by modular home experts Modscape, the building's orientation was carefully considered in order to capture views to the south, while also accessing northern light from behind.

The narrow property's form marries with the contours of the land, which minimised necessary earthworks and visually connects the house to the ground.

The facade is clad in vertical lengths of Silvertop Ash, which will silver off over time and blend into surrounding bushland even further.

Apart from small glimpses into the interior as you approach, the facade gives little away as to the interior design of the rest of the house.

Through the design phase, Modscape developed and refined the initial concept sketches to create a beautiful three bedroom, two bathroom home that's incredibly efficient from a modular point of view - the 225 square metre home utilises just three modules.

The T-shaped plan creates separate wings for living, sleeping and utilities, and enables the house to open to its surroundings, taking in the valley views to the south.

Windows and doors have been positioned to double as frames to the landscape: the low wide window which, when seated, frames a view towards the tree line; the enclosed porch (complete with hammock-hanging hooks) is a perfect vantage point for watching the weather roll up the valley; and the window in the living area perfectly captures spectacular sunsets.

Window furnishings were an important consideration in the design, with the client specifying the inclusion of motorised sheer blinds in the living areas and blockout versions for the bedrooms.

Because of the large area of glass in the project, the blinds were added to block the sun, but also retain the heat during the cooler months.

Services, including the mudroom laundry (complete with ample storage for muddy boots and wet coats), family bathroom and powder room are all positioned in one wing, to ensure the living spaces remain clutter-free and open towards the view.

While there are spaces for the family to gather, there are also intimate nooks, such as window seats in the bedrooms and a private deck off the master bedroom.

The neutral palette is contemporary with a hint of the country, with details such as open timber shelves, a large log fire, Scyon-lined walls and ceramic tiles.

The warm timber shelves and furniture provide a great counterpoint to the dark kitchen joinery, creating an overall effect of simplicity and balance.

Servicing the building's heating and cooling requirements are bulkhead reverse cycle systems, which are positioned throughout the dwelling.

There is also underfloor heating in the bathrooms and a double-sided chiming Philippe fireplace in the main living area.

An open wood fire on the outside deck ensures every single space can be enjoyed comfortably.

The roof is Colourbond Klip Loc in the pale shade of Surf Mist, which reflects the most sun. There is a skylight over the main bathroom and concealed box gutters provide a seamless finish.

Project Kangaroobie. Published with BowerBird.

Project Kangaroobie. Published with BowerBird.