There are some big differences between a house and an apartment. Each has its own special characteristics and the layouts are usually different in each case. Houses are also usually better connected to their surroundings and have better views. With the Cinqua Apartments, BKK Architects tried and successfully managed to create a hybrid project. It’s an apartment building which looks and feels a lot like a collection of individual homes put together on the same lot.
This new and rather curious-looking apartment building is situated in suburban Melbourne, in an established residential neighborhood populated with art-decor homes. The design of the building is a contemporary reinterpretation of the local housing types, the idea behind it being to integrate single-home dwellings into a collective and to create a cozy group of apartments with a clear identity and a lot of personality.
The project was completed in 2017 and the whole structure measures 5800 square meters in total. The building sits on a steep slope which allows a big portion of it to sit below the light of sight and to be hidden from the road. The palette of materials used throughout includes weathered bricks, metal and wood as well as a lot of glass.
The street facade of the building is structured into blocks and six large porthole windows punctuate its surface. These windows are a defining characteristic of the design, their role being an aesthetic one but also one aimed at connecting the apartments to their surroundings and letting the natural light inside.
The porthole windows establish a theme which is continued inside the building in the form of circular light fixtures, door handles, tiles and various other elements which, together, ensure a cohesive and well-balanced decor that gives the otherwise minimalist approach an opportunity to be eye-catching and to stand out.