Inside Hill House

Inside Hill House

Situated in the suburb of Auchenflower, Hill House sits proud as a modern four-story Queenslander amongst its traditional neighbours. Designed by Shaun Lockyer Architects, this modern sub-tropical home challenges the traditional typology of the 20th century Queenslander vernacular and shifts it into the modern 21st century. Allowing for a light and connected home that sits proud among its peers.


To build a light-filled, family friendly and practical home with a focus on lifestyle and minimal maintenance in stark contrast to the Queenslander the family had moved out of…. The design goals for this project was to maximise the North-Easterly views towards the City whilst finding opportunities within the site to create courtyard areas and outdoor living experiences. Considering the needs of “young adult children” with regards to zoning of areas was also important in the planning of the home. The ability to lock up the house and travel abroad (or up the coast to their beach home) in relative ease was an important agenda in the design of the house.”

Shaun Lockyer – Director/Project Architect – Shaun Lockyer Architects (SLa)

“My first impression when I saw the plans was “that’s a lot of excavation” and the issues we would incur with the excavation next to an existing driveway which serviced the rear two properties. The pool window forming a part of the house was also very interesting.”

Bruce Mole, Director/Project Manager – Thallon Mole Group (TMG)

A host of quality materials were sourced in order to both meet the area character code but also establish the high end finish of a SLa and TMG home such as James Hardie Linea Weatherboard, Accoya battens to external areas, natural stone and Duce windows and doors.

“The most unique material sourced for the project would have to be the Accoya to the external areas of the house, that was a particularly interesting product for us.”

Bruce Mole, Director/Project Manager – Thallon Mole Group (TMG)

The character code of the neighbourhood presented challenges when it came to the design. With restrictions in place to keep within the limits of the suburbs theme, ingenuity was required to fulfill the clients desire for a modern and contemporary home. Pairing the design challenges with the land size being on the smaller side and requirement for extensive excavation, safety challenges became apparent when it came to building.

“Working around the City Plan in such a way as to design a contemporary home within the confines of a prescriptive character code was certainly a challenge but one, we felt we executed well. The topography of the site was certainly very challenging given the massive level change from front to back, but this altitude changes also created opportunities which ultimately yielded in the house that stands there now. “

Shaun Lockyer, Director/Project Architect – Shaun Lockyer Architects (SLa)

“The significant challenge with Hill House was the safety issues involved with the excavation and the fact that there was a significant amount of house, pool and hardscapes squeezed onto a relatively small block of land.”

Bruce Mole, Director/Project Manager – Thallon Mole Group (TMG)

Favourite part of the house/build?

“The primary living space with its connection to the City on the Northern side with the garden courtyard and swimming pool to the South makes for a very special place to live. The feature of the swimming pool window opening into the rumpus room is certainly a lot of fun and is always a pleasant surprise to visitors to the home”

Shaun Lockyer, Director/Project Architect – Shaun Lockyer Architects (SLa)

“My favourite part definitely has to be the installation of the Duce windows to the living area.”

Bruce Mole, Director/Project Manager – Thallon Mole Group (TMG)

In your own words, how would you categorise this design?

“A regionally inspired subtropical home that takes full advantage of the site and its attributes.”

Shaun Lockyer, Director/Project Architect – Shaun Lockyer Architects (SLa)

“A modern take on a Queenslander”

Bruce Mole, Director/Project Manager – Thallon Mole Group (TMG)

Check out more of the Hill House project on our residential projects page.