| By Maria Cruz


Living Gothic Revival style



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Keeping its original Gothic Revival structure, the Maybanke house, facing the sea, in Sydney harbour, Australia, harmonises a 150-year history. The design is minimalist. From a blighted house from the 1870s, a light-filled property has been designed with panoramic views over the water. The team of architects at AJ+ C (Allen Jack + Cottier) retained the original fabric of the structure, giving it a touch of contemporary flair. The property they have created is more elegant and pleasant. This home was once home to Maybanke Anderson, champion of women’s rights advocate in Australia’s Victorian era. It was then converted into a block of apartments with little respect for the aesthetic and historical origins of the building. And, now, it has been built with a more modern feel, but in tune with its history. Chimneys, slabs inserted under existing walls, porous sandstone walls, windows, balconies, copper downpipes and dormer window in the mansard roof, as well as Gothic Revival ornamental stone trims, mounts and detailing are an integral part of this project. The glass-enclosed lift, which lets in daylight and vistas through the space, is one of the highlights of this renovation.