Bishops See Condominium Complex

Perth, Australia

Judith DiMaio

Client: Australia Northwest Properties Ltd

Type of facility: Luxury condominium units: 12 @ 2,200 sq ft; 2 triplexes @ 4,000 sq ft; and a private villa

Size: 40,000 Gross square feet including dependency structures

Complex program

Luxury and supreme virtuosity of design were the name of the game for this project. Australia Northwest Properties’ brief was for the development of opulent, and highly-private dwellings: duplexes, a triplex and two villas. All units were designed to include private elevators and parking, lap pools, and outdoor gardens. Their clientele was intended to be mostly Middle Eastern and Asian, all drawn to Perth for its ‘high roller’ casino lifestyle.

Site considerations

The site was a former plantation and garden, lush with tropical flowers and vegetation, coursed with water. The site slopes down to, and overlooks, the majestic Swan River.

Site strategies

DiMaio was sought out because of her ability to juggle complex site strategies and a highly-complex program brief, which not only was intended to provide luxuriousness spatially, but a residential complex where no one client ever crossed paths with, or saw, another. Therefore, the mastery of the design was in DiMaio’s ability to devise a complex building section allowing for ultimate privacy through alternating patterns of circulation bypassing one another. The duplexes and triplex are accessed by individual bridgeways leading to private, double- height terraces and private elevators to private parking and drop-off below.

Bishops See, Perth, Australia


The elevations

An elaborate series of cut-outs and diaphanous screened terraces ventilate each unit and provide light and air for the lap pools and entry sequences. The villas have internal gardens, pools and spas clipped onto the enclosing garden wall, on the one hand, and screened by abundant tropical vegetation on the other, while being visually connected to the interior garden and water courses.

Site model from above: the bar of duplex units, all facing into the garden and the two villas attached to the perimeter wall opposite.

Site plan study of the units and villas.

Villas have private entry courts. Access

to the precinct and the duplexes is reached

by way of a large exedra entry sequence. Each duplex is connected by passarelle to the elevator and stair service bar to the right of the duplexes.

Prismacolor on sepia paper by J DiMaio

Study model of the duplex bar and the volumetrics of the massing with indoor/outdoor voids disclosing the bar’s transparency. The Bishop’s plantation building is to the right in white.