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Vibe Design Group challenged the perception of what a home should ultimately look like with their Kew House 3 project. We provided the architectural door hardware to help perfect their vision for this home, which won two BDAV awards in 2011 for its innovative design.  

Vibe Design Group is a multi-award winning practice with a passion for design and a focus on excellence. Vibe Design looks beyond conventional thinking to forge a new way of living for tomorrow, with buildings that capitalise on the external environment, while optimising a sense of privacy. With a unique approach to architecture and design, Vibe Design’s philosophy of quality and longevity was perfectly matched by architectural hardware from Designer Doorware’s range. Vibe Design Group was given the dream brief - the total freedom to create. The only prerequisite was that the house was to contain four bedrooms and make a design statement.

Response to the Brief
In this design, Vibe sought to embody the iconic elegance of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s modernist style. Their over-arching concept was to create an open and interactive space, with a unique street façade that challenges perceptions of what a home should look like. Yet at the same time, they managed to maintain the private ambience of a home with soft, warm, timber elements.

The use of timber intentionally embraced the surroundings, blending in to the treed backdrop, and becoming one with the natural surroundings. ExoTec Façade Panel System was used, along with clever use of reflective glass, to provide refreshing contrasts to the timber. The cut out window in the living room effectively channelled the line of sight down to the pool, BBQ area and backyard space, preserving a private atmosphere.

This house is open yet private, and the timber feature wall of the interior invites a journey of discovery. The cantilevered box on the street facade internally houses the day bed and library which interacts with the study space. The study has a glass splash back wall chosen for its ability to reflect the outer landscape.

The interior begins with a flat veneer wall on approach with the intention to create the feeling of being at the base of a huge tree. It features hidden doors, that when opened, offer an unexpected surprise - housing the cloak, powder room, cellar and leading into the integrated kitchen.

The kitchen has Caesarstone bench tops and a preparation cube at the end of the main island bench.  A dumbwaiter is included which travels up from the garage into the scullery that resides behind one of the four integrated doors in the kitchen area.  The classic, Calcutta marble, is used in the bathrooms.

Architectural Door Hardware Solution
The detail of door hardware and bathroom accessories is very deliberately incorporated into Vibe’s design. Neo round handles were chosen not only for use with cabinetry, but also on room doors, with a magnetic catch, in lieu of a normal lever handle. This use of matching cabinet and door furniture adds a nice fluidity throughout the home and is complemented by sliding door hardware also from the Neo range.

Michael O’Sullivan explained, “When I saw the new Neo round pull handles I immediately thought of Kew House 3, which is reminiscent of the modernist era of architecture. We find that classic elements from that era have a great longevity and we saw the Neo round pull handles as an absolute fit for that, so we embraced it for the project. I could see us using this product time and time again because it has a classic elegance about it.”


Door handles - Novanta Lever
Internal sliding door handles  - Neo sliding pull handles
Cabinet handles  - Neo round pull handles
Bathroom accessories - Stella bathroom accessories