project: Pearl Bay Residence
location: Yzerfontein, West Coast architecture: Gavin Maddock Design Studio web:
interior design: Gavin Maddock Design Studio (GMDS)
photography: Adam Letch
This pristine contemporary home is located on the west coast 90kms north of Cape Town – bordered by
a nature reserve and adjoining the ocean, Gavin Maddock describes it as ‘a glorious site’.
The brief called for a ‘modern’ house with ocean views including standard accommodation
requirements within a budget.
With the front dune sitting higher than the rest of the site, the challenge was to reconcile house,
dune and views. The result is a rectangular double storey structure of 600 square metres comprising
three bedrooms, four bathrooms, generous living and dining areas, a gallery, casual living room, a
study, decks and balconies: Ocean views exist from virtually every room.
Cavity brick construction was used throughout with all walls plastered. The building had to be
grounded – it could not float – therefore it needed to be vertical, not horizontal. ‘Both front and
rear pavilions are two storeys with windows sliced through to the parapet. The two pavilions are
joined by the gallery, a single storey element, providing a seamless flow between these spaces. The
floor slabs are off-form concrete, contrasting with the painted plaster of the walls.
Furniture items were chosen for their scale and simplicity; bold pieces that hold the spaces
together. The TV and audio equipment was concealed in the living room wall cabinet, behind the
large steel framed sliding panel that accommodates a substantial artwork. A custom designed
fireplace was recessed into a stainless steel ledge.
To maximise the size of the main en-suite, a custom-shower was created and glass for the internal
walls was used. All bedroom floors are finished in wide-board oak flooring. Granite tiles were
selected for their texture and grain, resonating with rocks in the distance.
Reducing the structure to its minimum to maximise views, there are no ‘framed views’. The canvas
had to be as large as possible stretching the opening to the maximum of 14 metres addressing the
ocean. Ceiling heights of 3,3 metres ensures the lightness of the space. The living areas flow
seamlessly, creating a feel of the outside deck to be inside. Full height sliding doors retract
into the structure to form a singular space here.
The result is an individual statement of appealing symmetry, a modern home with large entertainment
areas and all the mod cons.
CONTRACTOR: McNeil Construction
Structural Engineer: Hulme & Associates
Geotechnical Engineer: Kantey & Templer
Land Surveyor: Neil Spencer & Associates