There is much variety in the design approaches used in housing and plenty of discussion on the architectural philosophies, which architects and homeowners apply to create their homes. Setting aside the basics such as keeping the rain out, stopping the rot, and keeping you warm when it’s cold and cool when it’s hot, for a house to be good - that is good for the soul and wonderful live in, it must provide its occupants with two fundamental experiences being those of ‘prospect’ and ‘retreat’.

‘Prospect’ is the opportunity to stand on the edge and look out, see what’s around you, connect with the place you’re living in and check to see it’s all good and that nothing bad is coming your way.

‘Retreat’ is the opportunity to draw back into a place where everything is comfortable and familiar, safe and relaxing. It’s a place where no strangers are watching and where you can relax with the people you love.

‘Prospect’ is an optimistic place where you feel good about your future, what’s around you and the world outside. ‘Retreat’ is the emotional cave or fortress where you can relax as the storm howls around outside.

In simple terms, one is perhaps your deck, and the other, your living room with the fireplace and family photos - but if your home ticks the boxes of both these fundamentals, then it’s well on the way to being a happy home.

Ivan Kattan

Andrew Cooksley
Architect