It is a feather in any architect’s cap to score an overseas project.
For Shiro Architects, 2016 began in Fiji, sizing up a site for the house of a major figure in Australia’s construction industry, on Vanua Levu, Fiji’s second largest island.
Vanua Levu is less tourist-oriented than Viti Levu, and all the more pleasant for it. As far as the eye can see, the scenery around the house’s site in Savusavu, on the south side of the island, is also dramatic.
The panorama here features the current building occupying the site, which will now be demolished to make way for an altogether more attractive new four-bedroom concrete and timber dwelling with an orientation allowing both master bedrooms unimpeded access to the views over Savusavu Bay, along with improved, modern facilities and security.
The purpose of our trip was to view the site first-hand and take in examples of other nearby homes, and of the possibilities and capabilities of local builders.
Clearly, in such a remote spot, there are limitations concerning the availability of skills and materials, but we came back with optimism, shared with the client, that within the budget and time frame, we can deliver to them a most desirable home.
Moreover, while they had envisaged over time to put a second house on the site, Hiromi once again came up with a better plan for using its space, applying her skills to get a better return on their investment by fitting in not two houses, but three.