Spectacular Glass Backed Squash Court for Owner’s Enjoyment

THE CURRENT OWNERS BOUGHT THE HOUSE IN 2011 AND HAVE DONE EXTENSIVE RENOVATIONS AND EXTENSIONS SINCE THEN. THE FIRST STAGE OF THE RENOVATIONS WAS DONE IN 2011 BY MARIN TVRTKOVIC FROM ARCHIPLAN ARCHITECTS. A SECOND PHASE OF RENOVATIONS TO THE MAIN HOUSE WAS DONE IN 2018, DESIGNED BY BRUCE ROWLANDS FROM ARCHITEXTURE SPATIAL DESIGN, AND BASED AROUND A LARGE CENTRAL COURTYARD WITH A SWIMMING POOL, CREATING A MULTI-GENERATIONAL FAMILY HOME.

The new structure has been built on what was originally a large tennis court, but as the owners are not keen tennis players the court was largely a wasted and underutilised space. The brief to the architect was to provide a garage parking space, the squash court and the ancillary offiffiffice and working spaces in a new build that still related to the existing structure of the main house. Rowland has achieved this relationship by incorporating the same kind of roof structure and exterior wall treatments so that the old and the new have a defifinite link and a similar aesthetic.

The owners are keen gardeners so they have created a linking landscape, including their collection of cycads and other plants.The garden was designed by Sally from Emerald Garden Services with beds intended to link the new structure to the existing house and garden.

The owners have an international lifestyle with properties around the world so they were quite clear about the structural and garden design for their local home. They needed the new structure to blend well with the existing house and not look like

an arbitrary ‘add on’. Rowland has designed the addition with the same Chromadek roofifing material and with windows and doors to match the main house seamlessly and with a paved driveway and parking space that joins the two buildings. The owners work part time from home so need ample parking space, as well as secure parking for their classic and super car collection.

The latest, and probably not the last renovation, includes a stunning glass backed squash court for the owner who is a keen squash player and uses the court several times a week for professional training as well as for his personal recreation. The new structure includes a bathroom and shower for the squash players as well as an offiffiffice and boardroom for ‘work at home’ convenience, and secure parking for the owner’s extensive collection of classic and super cars. There’s also a hot tub/spa in the enclosedcourtyard for relaxing and unwinding after a hard day at work.

The owner has extensive building experience so acted as the main contractor co-ordinating various sub-contractors including Shepparton Investments who supplied the solid wooden pillars, painting by Magic Brush, paving by Pave Doctor for the driveway and additional parking space, and the gutters supplied and fifitted by Levi Lynch. There’s a polished concrete flfloor for the parking area and Trellidor supplied the roller shutter doors for access to the garage space. DC de Sousa supplied the lasercut metal wall screen while Sign Creations provided the frosted glass laminate sheeting.

The new structure, built on the old tennis court, is dominated by the custom made squash court with a glass back wall which is both functional and allows visitors and guests an unimpeded view of the games in progress. It’s also a great informal entertainment space. The squash court meant that the roof needed to be double height above the court while the rest of the structure – the offiffiffices and boardroom – only needed to be single height, so the roof has a double height profile. The roof trusses were supplied and fifitted by Graham Westhoffff from Shepparton Investments while Africa Steel supplied the Chromadek roof sheets. The roof and the doors and windows are designed to match the existing house and were supplied by Sela Aluminium and Glass.

The interior of the new structure is defifined by the glass backed squash court. The glass wall provides great viewing for friends and family watching the game as well as allowing natural light to enter the space. In addition to natural lighting special LED lights have been imported to provide full, flflat lighting for evening matches.

It’s a full sized court with a sprung flfloor supplied by the South African company Medowen Sports Flooring who specialise

in squash courts, badminton and basketball courts as well as flflooring for ballet, gym and yoga studios. The court is surrounded by parking space for the owner’s collection of classic and super cars which can be driven in through roller shutter doors supplied by Trellidor for extra security and easy access. The polished concrete flfloor of the garage space was supplied by Pete Major from Scope Construction. There’s a cute ablution room with a shower, a toilet and a wash hand basin. The shower room has been decorated in an industrial chic style with a black oxide marbled fifinish on the walls and copper tubing for a towel rail and for the conduits for the light fifittings. A large slab of timber with a winey edge has been used for the vanity while the light fifittings look like copper water fixtures.

There’s a boardroom with windows overlooking the garden with blinds supplied by local company Venetian Blinds (Pvt) Ltd. Across the small hallway is a ‘work from home’ offiffiffice with built in, custom made storage units supplied and fifitted by Complete Kitchens as well as custom made furniture. Just outside the offiffiffice space is a small enclosed, private courtyard with a hot tub/spa bath supplied by the South African company Superior Spa and Bath.

The new extension supplies all the owners’ desires for a squash court, a bathroom, dedicated parking space and home offiffiffices. It’s a truly successful project with probably more future renovations to follow

Turning to the design of the interiors, Savva Pafifitis, owner of Savva Nicholas Pafifitis Design, who spends his time between South Africa and Zimbabwe, was engaged not only in the capacity of designer for the boardroom and surrounding spaces, and will also project manage along with Neil Westerdale of Complete Kitchens. Savva is a young, focused and dedicated professional who is passionate about his work. He successfully manages to weave together bespoke design with a twist of the unexpected to create environments where one can enjoy their space, whether it be an offiffiffice or residence. A favourite quote by renowned designer Charles Eames “The details are not the details. They make the design.”, is a mantra Savva lives by daily. Savva has provided a sneak preview of what we can expect to see in the fifinal reveal.


text by Michael Nott

photos by Fotohaus


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