Designed in collaboration with artist, creative director and surfer Dean Poole for his own family, this efficient and deceptively simple weekend house is hidden up a zig-zag stairway in the dense, native forest of the Waitakere Ranges, which roll down to the black-sand surf beaches below. Karekare Bach was born out of a desire to connect with the natural landscape and provide Dean Poole and his family with an “authentic New Zealand experience”, a goal that has been successfully executed in every corner of the project. The entire lower level is devoted to an open kitchen, living and dining space in which the family can enjoy spending time together while looking out of the floor-to-ceiling windows to the expansive native bush just outside.
To perfectly complement the architecture’s intentional simplicity, Dean took on the role of designing the kitchen himself. Having worked with Fisher & Paykel over many years in his role as creative director with the Auckland-based design studio Alt Group, the New Zealand native brand’s offering of sleek and contemporary appliances were the obvious choice for this pared-back project.
The plywood-lined living space is accented only with black, from the kitchen island’s worktop to the Fisher & Paykel built-in oven, providing dimension while allowing the natural woodgrain seen throughout to take centre stage. “With this space, Dean wanted the kitchen to act as a workshop, with products that facilitated the needs of everyday life and no more, exemplifying an ‘enough is enough’ design ethos,” comments Helen Haider, Head of Marketing, Fisher & Paykel UK & Ireland. “We therefore provided our most intuitive and ergonomic products. For example, our integrated DishDrawer™ is situated in one of the three freestanding timber cabinets and removes the discomfort of loading and unloading a conventional dishwasher, with the pyrolytic, self-cleaning oven found just above.
The result is absolutely no fuss in the kitchen, allowing the family to enjoy their time together and let the appliances do the hard work for them.”