Category Archives: Architecture

A few nights ago I watched a captivating documentary about the life and career of Harry Seidler. Since I moved to Australia four years ago I have become more and more fascinated with contemporary architecture. I don’t mean the generic box like dwellings that occupy most suburbs around the world. Ultimately I am talking about sustainable buildings that have involved serious consideration and are designed to last the test of time. Certainly this was Harry Seidler’s primary objective. » Read more

This Christmas were fortunate enough to spend time with our friend Jacob in Dover, Tasmania, Australia. Originally we had met Jacob when we booked his Quarry Hill Lookout holiday home (featured on Total Design Reviews) around this time last year. He is a very amicable bloke so we stayed in touch and he kindly invited us to spend the festive season with him. He also wanted to show us how his cookery school was progressing. Certainly we were impressed with the overall result especially the industrial style kitchen with a bespoke cantilever bench. This was co designed with local craftsman Mark, who is also in the process of creating his own cantilever house. » Read more

This Christmas (2017) friends kindly invited us to stay as their guests in a cottage they own in Tasmania. As the temperatures were due to soar in South Australia we jumped at the opportunity. At this time of year Hobart was hosting many events like the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race and ‘Taste of Tasmania. Ultimately this meant we were unable to hire a car because we hadn’t booked in advance. Fortunately, our hosts generously loaned their car so we could engage in various activities. One of our main highlights (recommended by many people) was the amazing Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). » Read more

Recently I completed a book about Australian architecture featuring 25 unique homes. Interestingly my editor Cheryl (and co author) is based in Pennsylvania in the United States. She is absolutely fanatical about Australian properties and the huge diversity in this landscape. Although geographically this region is a similar size to North America it only has a 10th of the population. Ultimately this means there is an abundance of land for owners to build their dream dwellings. However, rather than focus entirely on extravagant mansions we decided to include many affordable residences. A great example is ‘The Toy Management House’ by Austin Maynard Architects. » Read more

Just over a year ago myself and family treated ourselves to fantastic cruise around New Zealand. As a child I had always dreamed of visiting this amazing country and certainly was disappointed. In fact, arriving by ship is delightful because you are greeted by the awesome Milford Sound Fiords located at the tip of the South Island. This is one of the regions most famous tourist destinations and is described by Rudyard Kipling as the eighth Wonder of the World. As well as being considered as an area of outstanding natural beauty there are also some ground breaking residential homes. A great example is Back Country House by Ltd Architectural. » Read more

Recently I wrote a review of a fantastic holiday home located in the picturesque town of Dover, Tasmania (Australia) called Quarry Hill Lookout. The home wasn’t excessively large or expensive to build but illustrated how you could achieve something special without breaking the bank. At the other end of the scale MGA Architects are really pushing the boundaries of modern design and work for discerning clients who haven’t got monetary restrictions. One of their finest accomplishments is a residence in Battery Point, Hobart. » Read more

A few days ago I watched a couple of episodes of TV programme called ‘Most Expensivest’. The show is hosted by a US rapper called 2 Chainz (Tauheed Epps) who also is an entrepreneur. Essentially each episode illustrates different ridiculously expensive products that extremely wealthy people purchase. Some of the examples include $1,000 gold leaf doughnuts, $4,900 chicken wings (that are smothered in caviar, truffles, vintage cognac etc.) and even bottled Swiss air. Obviously the sensationalist and tongue in cheek format is designed to attract viewers. It is also very intriguing, thought provoking and entertaining. However, I could certainly think of more interesting ways to spend my money. One of them would have to be one of Steve Hermann’s minimalistic Californian houses. » Read more

Back in 2014 after writing about horology for a few years I decided to design my own watch. Even though many of the high end watchmakers are creating incredible concepts, entry level timepieces (at the time) seemed pretty bland by comparison. Effectively you can buy a generic stock watch from a Chinese manufacturer, customise the dial with your logo and establish a label. Certainly, there is a market for this type of timepiece but I wanted to adopt a more experimental and inventive approach. That is why I drew inspiration from a clock devised by famous industrial designer George Nelson. The result was a completely bespoke watch called the Polaris. Subsequently this piece featured in Esquire Magazine (Singapore/Malaysia) and a book I wrote for Schiffer Publishing called ‘Limited Edition Watches’.

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