Night Sky by Peter Stutchbury Architects won the highest residential award for architecture in Australia in 2021, and now the striking home – which nestles in the foothills of New South Wales’ dramatic Blue Mountains – is for sale via Modern House.
The 1,700 sq ft house is located in Blackheath and was commissioned by Basil Borun – an engineer and astronomer who asked the practice ‘to take him to the stars without leaving his living room.’
Its site-specific design blurs ancient forms with modern ones and is inspired by a 19th-century ammunition bunker in Romania, plus Le Corbusier’s modernist Chandigarh development in India. Night Sky features a cathedral-like vaulted living room built from reclaimed Sydney brick. At the apex of its 7.5-metre-high roof is an unglazed retractable oculus, perfectly positioned for looking at the Pavo constellation and Milky Way at night.
When open during the day, the oculus acts as a giant skylight, tracking the sun’s path across the walls and floor of the living room.
On either side of this ‘sky room’ is a wing. The easterly side has the primary bedroom and bathroom (to rise with the sun), and the western wing houses a guest room and study. These private spaces can be divided off via sliding doors – or left open to maintain sight lines through the property. Smooth brick has been used for floors and walls, heightening the historic feel of the interior, while arched ceilings mimic the undulation of the Blue Mountains in the distance.
Night Sky is designed with passive solar principles: the oculus doubles as a ‘chimney’ that draws hot air out of the home during the summer. Some 48 photovoltaic panels power the New South Wales property in its entirety, and it has a 60,000-litre water tank and provision in the southwest corner of the site for a residential windmill.
See more of this architectural marvel via Modern House.