Herminn 'Man Cave' Private Residence

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Canalside Interiors was thrilled to have our furniture featured in this amazing Residential Conversion in collaboration with The Gentry. This home is a visual feast and one of the most exciting residential projects!


This two-storey warehouse in Surry Hills covered to what is possibly Sydney's coolest house.

Home to a young savvy entrepreneur who likes to entertain, the home features its own private nightclub complete with gold bar, see-through glass smoking room, four bedrooms/bathrooms, a pool that looks into the nightclub and a super impressive sound system.

Plus a sleeping pod shaped like a UFO - the owner's bedroom." - The Cool Hunter via thegentry.com.au


See article from: 

Elana Castle, The Australian


"When John Winning came across an unused 1900s warehouse on the fringes of Sydney’s CBD eight years ago, the chief executive of the home appliance retailers Winning Group was undeterred by its distinctly dilapidated condition.

A visionary businessman in every sense, Winning recognised that the 1100sq m former sauce factory harboured undeniable potential.

Having been on the hunt for a large-scale property for a number of years, Winning was drawn to the property’s significant proportions, envisioning a private sanctuary that would encompass all the attributes and amenities of a grand residence of comparable scale.

“It was important for me that my home include all the best parts of any other house — but all in one location,” Winning explains. “That meant great views and entertaining, a pool, lots of light, outdoor space and a garden. I wanted a home that would evoke a feeling of being anywhere in the world. I wanted to be able to get lost inside without feeling like you needed to get out.”

A tall order by any standards, given the property’s lack of notable external views (read: a parking lot, a rear lane and a busy city thoroughfare), an existing grid of thick roof trusses and hardwood columns, and a distinct lack of natural light.

Recognising the inherent challenges, Winning held a design ideas competition, ultimately selecting Sydney-based architecture firm Allen Jack+Cottier to tackle his brief. The chief executive was struck by AJ+C co-director Peter Ireland’s proposal to create a series of sleeping and living spaces, interconnected via a new centralised, double-volume void.

The void — achieved by removing a three-bay cross-section of the warehouse — satisfies multiple objectives. “The extraction enabled us to link the home’s three levels via a central stair and a bridge at the upper level,” explains Ireland, “as well as draw down natural light from a new glazed skylight.”

It also provides the perfect location for a lush internal garden and a close-up perspective of a new series of steel components that stabilise the building’s original structure yet merge — seemingly effortlessly — within its rigid framework.

But it was Ireland’s out-of-the-box design for the master suite that truly captured Winning’s imagination — more than ticking all his boxes for a hermitic and acoustically insulated sleeping quarters.

“Due to concerns about nearby traffic noise, I had made it clear that I wanted a bedroom that didn’t connect directly to any external walls or the roof,” explains Winning.

The igloo-like master bedroom and bathroom are contained within a fluid resin envelope that seems to hover above the floor. Appearing almost as soon as you ascend the open stairwell, the organically shaped cocoon dominates the space, gracefully ducking and diving between the existing roof trusses.

Given Winning’s acoustic directive, the shell’s construction materials were carefully and painstakingly researched. Expanded polystyrene was chosen for its insulating properties, and epoxy resin for its inherent mouldability. The form itself is the result of an intensely complex collaboration between many parties, but in particular with 3-D engineering company mouldCAM, which was responsible for developing an intricate solution to the cave’s fabrication, delivery and construction.

Through a bespoke door that resembles the kind of portal you might find fitted to the exterior of a submarine, the bedroom is primarily a monotone affair in which the enclosure undulates to such an extent that it’s not entirely clear where the walls and ceilings start and end. The floor is consists of plush, dark brown leather “puzzle” pieces that surround the master bed and a central element that houses an entertainment system, a built-in wardrobe and the inner workings of the air-conditioning system. The attached master ensuite evokes Winning’s love for sailing — a timber deck is perfectly offset with appropriately pared-back bathroom fittings and a shower bathed in natural light from a scooped skylight above.

“The idea was to separate the pod from the existing, orthogonal language of the warehouse and to place something far more sculptural in the space,” Ireland says. “It reorganises the original warehouse geometry, becoming an internal and external maker of space.” And, although masterful in terms of its engineering, the bare simplicity of the form also sets up a strong aesthetic contrast with the vintage eclecticism that characterises the rest of the house.

“This may be the ultimate pad, but not in the traditional sense,” explains Kelly Ross of The Gentry, the visual mastermind behind the warehouse’s interiors, and Winning’s interior designer of choice. “It’s composed of many carefully conceived and selected pieces of furniture and fittings that really reflect Winning’s passions, interests and rich family history.”

Ross has curated a series of heirlooms and painstakingly selected elements to create a dramatic and highly personal mise-en-scene.

A compendium of new and reclaimed objects includes a 12-seater dining table crafted from Oregon beams (which were salvaged from the property when the man cave was installed), an eclectic mix of furniture including refurbished pieces sourced from Gumtree, an Irish Georgian sofa purchased from the set of The Great Gatsby,and a rejuvenated Turkish antique restored with vibrant dye.

Given Winning’s predilection for the finest appliances, the kitchen was, unsurprisingly, the subject of significant design attention. Ross has luxurious cloaked the joinery in waxed mild steel, electroplate gold finish, noir marble and mirror tiles, seamlessly integrating Winning’s selection of Sub Zero, Wolf, Miele and ­Qasair appliances.

A secluded garden terrace frames the end of the kitchen, while the dining area, guest WC, a dressing room (reminiscent of a luxuriously bespoke Ralph Lauren retail store) and a guest bedroom populate the remainder of the upper-level footprint. The guest bedrooms (there are three), occupy a series of bays, acting as an insulating wall to the street while “opening up” on to an internal garden.

Drawing on Ross’s experience in theatrical production — and pushing the boundaries of Winning’s taste — the suites are informed by a series of visual metaphors. The Empire Room on the entrance level, for example, was inspired by a fictitious “leggy British extrovert”, and is dominated by queen-size bunk beds draped in custom-made Union Jack curtains that open to reveal a gallery of vintage tennis racquets.

“The Cabin Room on the entrance level depicts a simmering, hibernating brunette with an air of mystery,” explains Ross. As a result, the room is intentionally dim and sparse, underscoring the designer’s aesthetic intentions. The ensuite bathroom is a personal favourite. Honed slate tiling, an Anthracite sink, a timber workbench, exposed Edison globes and a collection of apothecary bottles from The Society Inc combine in quintessential chalet-style unison.

But it’s the lower level that perfectly rounds out the whimsical and personal narrative in the form of a timber-clad steam room, a decadently decked-out bar area and a generously sized lounge room (complete with vinyl turntable and CD player), all of which are caught in the glow of the illuminated underbelly of the glass-fronted indoor swimming pool above."

thegentry.com.au, architectsajc.com, mouldcam.com

- Elana Castle, The Australian


Images C/- thegentry.com.au | www.theaustralian.com.au/life/home-design/john-winning-converts-a-surry-hills-warehouse-into-man-cave/news-story/a851f2e9553df503df1cfe1972a3c9be


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