(No) vertical limits

Builder Guy Bunder always wanted to build a home that would be nestled into a hill with greenery on every floor.

His latest project in Merewether is exactly that. And it’s waiting for a buyer who appreciates the unique combination of functionality and minimalist design. To call the exterior of Guy Bunder’s Merewether home anything but stunning would be an understatement. Driving through the residential streets of Merewether to his newly finished build, one isn’t quite prepared for the minimalist black boxes, which seem to be floating on thin air.

The four-level home is built into a very steep slope. Guy had looked at the site years ago and was intrigued, despite the obvious challenges. But, he thought, at least he would be working with a blank canvas. The site was overgrown and only a burnt-out carport remained. It was a neighbourhood eyesore, and nobody had dared take it on. Even Guy completed another project before finally beginning this amazing building.

“It’s hard to find land in this area, and it was a large plot that could be subdivided to build two homes. Plus, it was perfect for my dream project of a home built into a hillside. At first, I didn’t want the fourth floor, I really wanted the house to be hidden in the hill. I had a very clear idea what I wanted this house to look like and knew it wouldn’t be easy to pull it off. Having architects who just get it was super important. I’ve worked with SDA/Space Design Architecture on other projects and completely trust them; they really did a great job,” he says.

As he had expected, the excavation was the biggest challenge. “We had to move 1,600 tonnes of soil and rock, which is about 240 truck loads, and we poured 250 cubic metres of concrete for the retaining walls alone, for the whole three-month excavation, which was crucial. With torrential rain, things could have gone very wrong. It was also a bit nerve-racking for the neighbours as their houses were sitting precariously next to a 10-metre sheer drop”.  

21 Flowerdale Avenue is soon to hit the market with PRD Newcastle as one of the most anticipated sales in the region. The auction is scheduled for late June – early July.

Read more in issue 94 of Hunter&Coastal Lifestyle Magazine  Story: Cornelia Schulze Photos: Edge Commercial Photography and Jacobs Photography