Tama is short for Tamarama: a Sydney beach suburb, famous for its hedonistic surf culture, gradually being gentrified by a population that exchanges stock market tips while running barefoot to the ocean with a surfboard tucked under their arms.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

ArchitectLuigi Rosselli Architects
LocationTamarama, Sydney NSW, Australia
Year: 2017

Design Architect: Luigi Rosselli
Project Architect: Raffaello Rosselli
Assisting Architects: Gianfranco Panza, Sean Johnson
Interior Designer: Raffaello Rosselli and the Client
Builder: Building With Options Pty Ltd
Structural Consultant: Rooney & Bye Pty Ltd
Joiner: BWO Fitout and Interiors
PhotographyPrue Ruscoe, Edward Birch

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

From the architectGeographically characterised by steep escarpments that surround the beach (far narrower than its near neighbours at Bondi and Bronte), the homes that cling to Tamarama’s hillsides are a mishmash of ticky-tacky boxes left by the previous generation of beach bunnies, now dwindled by skin carcinomas. 

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Edward Birch

Tama’s Tee Home was constructed on what was solid and reusable from the previous house. Approximately fifty-percent of the previous structure was kept, including the large sandstone retaining wall to the front of the home and the garage beneath. The new concrete ‘Tee’ structure to the front of the house was designed so that it would rest on the single point of the garage structure below that would bear the weight; this explains the ‘unipod’ shape to the front façade of the home and the need to provide it with a solid concrete structure.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Edward Birch

Ocean side architecture must be designed and constructed with very weather resistant materials: the salt, humidity and wind are implacable agents of rapid decay. If used properly, concrete is quite resistant to such seaside aggression.  Marine grade roofing materials and stainless steel fixings are necessary in this position.  

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

To adapt to the hillside the house was built over four storeys. Located on level three, the main living area benefits from ocean views to the northeast and a sheltered terrace to the northwest side that is protected from the strong coastal winds.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Project Architect, Raffaello Rosselli provided his own detailing and material palette interpretation for a refined beach house, embracing natural materials, exposed roof framing and light finishes that are washed by dappled and ever changing light that filters through custom designed shutters.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

The shutters form private screens when viewed from the street but are seethrough when the occupants look outward towards the view.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

If one is bored by the ever-changing views of the Pacific Ocean seascape one can contemplate and wonder on the lines of the ceiling joists, braced with traditional criss-cross braces.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Open Plan, Inside/Outside, flow, seamless design, are all buzzwords for contemporary architecture, and particularly suitable for the Sydney coastal climate.  However such concepts require a layering of ‘filters’: doors, curtains and shutters.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

The Roscharch Blotch fireplace, located centrally in the open plan living floor, as with the traditional northern European ‘Stube’, with its centrally located stove.

The freeform gas fireplace is the pivoting point at the intersection of the dining room, TV room and kitchen, with the main stair spinning out tangentially.  The gas burner is inserted into a masonry base, finished with a Rockcote render.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Gardens do not grow very well on the salt ravaged escarpments of Tamarama, however Norfolk pines love it.  The Romans liked orthogonality, horizons had to have vertical contrasting lines, often provided by obelisks or columns.  Seascapes also require vertical elements, such as this tree or a saling mast.

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects
© Prue Ruscoe

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

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Tama's Tee Home by Luigi Rosselli Architects

Tama is short for Tamarama: a Sydney beach suburb, famous for its hedonistic surf culture, gradually being gentrified by a population that exchanges stock market tips

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