First Light Studio had its work cut out for the architects on staff when a client came in with the request for a new home design that was “not another box.”
The Christchurch-based architecture firm had to come up with something unique and different, and thus was born the Shark House.
The thought of the supercar helped to envision a building that feels like it is constantly in motion. But what really makes the home stand apart is also what engendered the name. From a profile, the house looks like a shark’s head coming up out of the water, with its gaping maw—filled with rows of teeth—smiling wide at the world.
The look is accomplished by First Light’s focus on not having any plane or surface be perpendicular to another. The thought might cause concern that the home would end up looking haphazard in some fashion, but the result is actually a look of engineered precision.
The home features a predominance of steel, which is tempered by the home’s “grill.” That feature wraps around the home and serves to moderate the amount of sunlight that pierces into the interior throughout the day. Inside, the home makes use of textural concrete that is accented by wood grain as the formwork.
Warm, natural colours soften the home, making it feel comfortable and cozy. The home covers 310 square meters and consists of a master bedroom with bath, three more bedrooms, another bathroom, and a kitchen, dining area, and library. There’s also a study and a laundry room. The garage has room for three vehicles. As First Light puts it, “this home meets its brief and then some…a distinctive not-box that is perfect for inner-suburban life.”