By Donna Fleming
Construction has yet to begin on Edition, a boutique apartment development, but the design has already impressed the judges at the World Architecture Festival.
They've shortlisted it for one of their prestigious international awards, alongside future residential projects from places such as London, Oslo, Istanbul and New York, and the team behind the development couldn't be happier.
Russell Thompson and Mark Finlay, directors of the LEP Group, were delighted to hear that local architects Monk Mackenzie had been singled out for their work on the luxury apartments.
"It is a huge accolade to be nominated," says Russell, adding that the winner will be named in November.
"We've always wanted to create a building that was iconic, and would become a landmark in Parnell, and the fact that Edition has made the finals of an international competition says a lot about what the architects have been able to achieve."
Russell says the LEP Group, who have previously worked on office, retail and public developments, had been keen to do a residential project for quite a while, but took their time finding the perfect site, then choosing the teams who could bring their ideas to life.
"It took a long time to find the right site but we were very happy with the place we've got in Churton St," says Russell.
"It's a quiet street with great views, but so close to Parnell and also very handy for the city and Newmarket."
Once the land was secured, they set about finding an architect, and Monk Mackenzie turned out to be a fortuitous choice.
"Their work is just fantastic," says Russell, adding that they were also impressed with designers Bureaux, who have done all the interiors.
The aim was to create a simple, elegant and timeless building that appears to float. The top three floors will be cantilevered, and the exterior will be wrapped in a striking skin of Italian glass brick.
The entrance will feature a reflection pool, lots of travertine stone and exposed concrete ceilings.
The apartments are all generous, even the smallest one-bedroom home.
"We could have built more apartments but we wanted these to be good sizes," says Russell, pointing out the two penthouses are 334sq m each, which is larger than many free-standing houses.
All come with loggias that can be transformed from separate outdoor rooms into extra living space in the apartments, and some have several outdoor spaces.
The high stud and floor-to-ceiling windows will add to the feeling of spaciousness, and top quality materials are being used throughout, including stone floors and marble benchtops.
The kitchens will be sleek and stylish, and individually tailored for each apartment. The bench tops will be cantilevered to reflect the exterior of the building, and oak cabinetry will be a feature of both the kitchens and the bathrooms.
The minimalistic design will be in keeping with the theme of the building, with Bureaux aiming for a sophisticated feel.
Many of the apartments come with a separate media roomthat could also be a home office.
Two apartments are spread over two levels, while the penthouses include a study area in the master bedrooms.
The views will be one of Edition's main drawcards, with residents able to enjoy the outlook across St George's Bay to the harbour and North Head and Devonport in the distance.
Construction work is due to start towards the end of the year and the completion date is anticipated to be the third quarter of 2019.
"We're very passionate about Edition, and we can't wait to see it when it is all done," says Russell. "There's a lot of interest in it now, but we hope that in 100 years time this building will still be an awesome place that people love living in."