Hovering above the shimmering waters of the Hauraki Gulf on Auckland’s North Shore, the home is truly spectacular.
When Elaine Taffie and Tony Bunting built the home, they sought to create a simple, no-fuss yet high-quality kitchen that maximised the view. They had clear ideas about the design and layouts says their architect, John Cornthwaite. The emphasis is on openness and clean, minimalist lines with beautiful colour and materials that make it great for entertaining.
“The kitchen became the centre point of the whole living space, opening to adjacent living areas and overlooking the indoor lap pool that’s enclosed in a glazed loggia in front.”
Vibrant lacquered red cabinetry enlivens the space, creating a seductively warm heart that draws guests into the kitchen to sit at the long island bench. Stainless steel was chosen for the benchtop to contrast with the Jurastone floors that feature small pieces of shell.
Adding further emphasis to the kitchen space, Cornthwaite popped the roof above to create a clerestory cove that throws natural light inside by day. At night, LED lights under the bench that change colour for a party mood.
Appliances are mainly Bosch. They include the induction hob, wall oven and combination microwave oven as well as the coffee maker. However, the integrated fridge/freezer is Liebherr, and a DeDietrich hydraulic downdraft that rises up at the push of a button was selected because it is so silent when operating. A Vintec wine fridge under the bench gives easy access to drinks, chilled to the perfect temperature.
One of the most important features of the kitchen is the home automation system. In a handy central position in a cabinet door, it offers easy touch control over every aspect of the home’s environment from lighting to entertainment and sound, security, external louvers and retractable blinds.
This bathroom’s designer, architect John Cornthwaite, says there’s nothing fancy about the bathroom, but its size and materiality give it a luxurious, Roman bath-house feel. The effect is just as intended: minimalist and contemporary.
While it is open to the outdoors beyond, the home’s position high on top of a cliff assures complete privacy. Unusual for a bathroom, the large, unscreened picture window offers abundant natural light and tantalising sea views.
Walls and floors wrap the space in warm, honey-toned, beautifully textured Jurastone, which is subtly lit by sparking halogens.
The clients have selected beautiful bathroom products from the Gruppo Italian range at Spazio Casa in Takapuna. Taking centre stage as it reclines in front of the window, a shapely Gioia freestanding bathtub seems to float in the room like an elegant piece of sculpture with a Luna floor-mounted mixer and handset. The toilet is wall hung from the Smile series. Discreetly sitting behind floor-to-ceiling glass panels and taking up the entire end wall, the double-ended shower features a Tasso Column shower. Floor tiles flow in and out of the shower on one easy-to-navigate level.
The vanity, too, is streamlined, making it not just lovely but so practical for cleaning. Rather than the usual side-by-side arrangement, this double vanity comes in one curvaceous unit. At either side of the vanity, strikingly simple heated bar towel rails are from the Kronos series.
While storage seems to be absent, big storage cupboards as well as ducting and ventilation systems are, in fact, cleverly concealed behind the expansive mirror above the vanity. The mirrored surface makes the space seem even larger than it actually is.