Owner’s Dream

Daniel and Jane had moved from Scotland with their young family and wanted to embrace Brisbane’s climate and open living in a generous family home that would be an easy-care haven in their busy lives. Her style was classic Georgian. He preferred classic 60s.

Existing House

The existing property fell from the street to a large north-facing backyard that would have faced a tableau of stacked Queenslander roofs on the other side of the valley had a low deck roof and ripple glass not blinkered the view. Disconnected from the ground below and with higgledy-piggledy rooms built in, the once grand but shabby Queenslander did not suit family life. The central living room was dark and full of doors.

Our Design Solution (built by Stewart Harris)

We wanted to create a space that expanded and released into the suburban valley garden. The original house was raised, its verandahs repaired and its arches reused and converted into the family’s private rooms. We placed the garage at the front and reinstated the original front door on the lower level. From there, floor platforms progressively step down and widen, past the central pivot space of traditional stairs with skywindow, to a full width, open plan living area with 3.6-metre-high ceilings and on to a double height terrace, wet edge pool, terraced play spaces and tropical garden.

Interior details reference the family’s journey;  the white timber and leadlight detailing respects the restored Queenslander’s past. The polished concrete floors are practical; the fireplace and window seats reflect modern life. Aqua and gold tiles symbolise water and sun in a tropical paradise.

Owner, Daniel collaborated on every part of the design and construction process, which came in on time and on budget, to everyone’s satisfaction.

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Our Happy Clients

PlaceMate is trustworthy. If they say they’ll do something, they do it. The finished product makes us all look good. Some architects are really expensive, and the owners have to wait a year to see them. PlaceMate gives just as good a service, quicker and at a reasonable price

Nathan Forbes Rise Constructions

Renovating our home with the assistance of Placement and their relationship with Phil Maher Builder was essentially a stress free adventure.

PlaceMate worked with us to achieve our dream home. Our home was modernised without losing the charm of a post war cottage.

Our house has become a functional, open & light filled home. Which is now the central family meeting place.

We even discovered that Architects, Engineers and Builders DO get on and work well together.

Even though our budget was small, through the architectural skills and listening skills, PlaceMate turned our needs into the home we wanted.

Beth & John Owners

We knew we only had one chance to get the look and the acoustics right and the room also needed to work if we ever sold the home.PlaceMate took into account not just the acoustics, but also the aesthetics of the room. We are delighted with their work

Greg & Trish Elgar Brisbane

Best use of a steep site

PlaceMate designs topped the state at the Queensland Master Builders Association Housing & Construction Awards for best use of a sloping site over $250,000 for two contemporary townhouses built on a 500sqm site that dropped 10 meters from a busy road. All four bedrooms and living areas captured the city views.


Best renovation $250-$500,000

PlaceMate designs took home the prize at the Queensland Master Builders Association Housing & Construction Awards for the best renovation $250,000 – $500,000 for a 1910 cast concrete Californian bungalow-style house in Indooroopilly. The winning design unified alterations undertaken in the 50s, 70s and 80s and added a new wing.

Recognised in The Courier-Mail

PlaceMate’s skills were recognised in The Courier-Mail in January 2016 for our transformation of a Shorncliffe residence originally built around 1910.

Registered with Board of Architects Queensland

Registration Number 2457

Our Client Success Team

Placemate Architects works with successful and innovative clients. Together we achieve significant and lasting transformations of cities, houses and landscapes.