Biophilia – Slate House Northcote

Melbourne Design Studios

Biophilia – Slate House Northcote demonstrates how a high class, top end home can be both beautiful and environmentally sustainable.

3 awards

Melbourne Design Studios has designed Biophilia on the principles of nature, clever craftsmanship and environmental design. Set in an inner-suburban streetscape, a blend of natural materials with a neutral palette work seamlessly together to successfully integrate inside with outside, making this intimate connection is a huge success factor.


The passive design aspect of this project is excellent as is its ability to mitigate energy use. Meticulous detailing, natural materials and an imaginative use of space creates multi-use, flexible areas that bring joy and delight and are a testament to how a deep connection with nature can benefit occupants’ health and wellbeing.


Large solar panels were integrated into the roof line in a seamless way and the careful placement of the courtyards allow for maximum passive solar orientation benefits to be harnessed, meaning power bills will be lower. The master bedroom extends on to a green roof terrace, allowing the homeowners to enjoy the best of inner-city living. The home’s use of natural materials gives the feeling of being totally immersed in nature, blurring the reality of the suburban setting.


The internal courtyard which flows through to the interior space is a spectacular example of what hard work and consideration can achieve. Three different colours of LaPaloma bricks are laid down in a pattern inspired by dappled shadows created by trees to further accentuate the biophilic concept. Second-hand red bricks on the external walls and around the pool complement the contemporary courtyard.


Slate used on the walls and roof work in harmony with other masonry elements to create a balanced and considered home. Biophilia demonstrates how an age old traditional material can be used in a contemporary way.


When a design outcome can enhance the living of its occupants, it should be celebrated.

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