Enmore House

Architecture Residential Enmore, New South Wales, Australia

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1. Streetscape

Retention and restoration of the original dwelling

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2. Rear Addition

A contemporary rear addition to capture light and distant views

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3. Stair

A north facing window and void draws light into this south facing addition

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4. Kitchen / Living Room

A simplified material palate ensures a timeless space that is flooded in light

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5. Kitchen / Living Room

A large void creates the sense of space in an otherwise tight innerwest property

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6. Kitchen

A simple and clean kitchen that maximises funtionality

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7. Master Bedroom

A open, yet private master bedroom loft maximises on light with a raised roof to the north.

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8. Ensuite

A private ensuite captures northern light and rooftop views

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9. Floor Plans

A clear distinction between old and new

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10. Building Section

Maximising on northern light to this south facing addition

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The striking light and the soaring ceilings are the first things you notice when you enter the extension to this seemingly modest federation semi-detached cottage in inner west suburb of Enmore. Inspired by New York lofts and industrial warehouses, the centre-piece is a six metre void with a huge north facing window to capture the best of the light and give the house a real wow factor, with a sense of space rarely achieved in inner west properties.

Althought south facing, the house feels light and airy and has a sense of openness at all times of the day. There are glimpses of green and the neighbourhood skyscape through the strategic placement of windows. The addition purposefully juxtaposes the original federation dwelling, to create a clear divide between old and new, keeping with the guidelines of the heritage council and burra charter principles. A small external garden, a wide entry way and complementary range of colours, themes and materials tie the two areas together.

Previously the rear of this dwelling consisted of a series of poorly planned small spaces including a kitchen, dining and laundry, which restricted access to the rear garden. Being south-facing, the spaces lacked natural light, resulting in artificial lighting used for most of the day. The brief for the renovation included a light and airy space including a loft parents retreat, a well-planned kitchen and a family area that flows to the outdoor space. The extension also needed to link with the original house but not imitate it.

Questions and Answers

How is the project unique?

The magic of this project is in creating light and space in an otherwise tight, south-facing innerwest property.

What were the key challenges?

Drawing light in to the south facing addition was the main challenge of this project.
Being in Sydney's innerwest suburb of Enmore, space was premium. The desire to make the most of the a tight 200m2 site, while not compromising the functionality of the rear garden was highly desired.

What was the brief?

The catalyst for the renovation was the need for a light and airy space to replace the existing dark south facing kitchen and dining room. With teenage kids, the owners desired a parents retreat, a well-planned kitchen and a family area that flows to the outdoor space. The extension also needed to link with the original house but not imitate it.

What were the solutions?

The design centered around the creation of a large void space which drew northern light from strategically placed windows. These windows also took advantage of distant tree and sky views to give the owners a real feeling of space in an otherwise tight site.


Project size

160 m2

Site size

208 m2

Completion date


Building levels


Project team

Amrish Maharaj


Amrish Maharaj Architect