Jonathan Chancellor | 14 November 2012

West Head House, the Peter Stutchbury Clareville family retreat, listed

West Head House, the Peter Stutchbury Clareville family retreat, listed

West Head House, designed and built by Peter Stutchbury in the Clareville bushland, has been listed for sale.

Designed 25 years ago over a two-year period, it's one of Stutchbury's earliest houses, and his home until its upcoming sale.

Peter Stutchbury has since designed houses around the world, most famously for the Japanese fashion designer Issey Miyake.

Stutchbury recently recalled it was in 1980 that 75 Hudson Parade, a vacant battleaxe block, was bought by the family who'd holidayed at Clareville from the early 1960s.

It was after graduating from Newcastle University that Stutchbury decided to live in the pristine bushland environment where koalas roamed in the adjacent spotted gum forest.

Its views overlook Pittwater toward Longnose Point and the Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park.

With its small façade to the west minimising sun and wind load, the house was designed on return from an extended stay living in and studying the highland villages of Papua New Guinea.

"The house has a wonderful sense of the lightness of being," Stutchbury suggests about the house, which is a composite of timber and steel lightweight construction.

"The house is simply a conduit for healthy living, for anyone who seeks serenity this house promotes that quality," says the marketing material prepared by Marcus Lloyd-Jones at Modern House Estate Agents.

It has been home to a family for over 23 years – the three children: Bronte, 21, Noah, 19, and Cleapatra, 12, all born and nurtured in and around the West Head House environment.

It's five bedrooms with its gross internal area of 213 square metres and an 111-square-metre gross external area. Its set on a 746-square-metre block with landscaping by Phoebe Pape.

It's been featured in numerous books including Peter Stutchbury: Of People and Places: Between the Bush and the Beach, Pesaro.

The family are hopeful of $1.5 million plus after which they will head to the oceanside of the Pittwater peninsula to build a new home. 

Photography: © Michael Nicholson

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