Worktop extends from kitchen to garden in Sydney residence by Benn + Penna Architecture
Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

Worktop extends from kitchen to garden in Sydney residence by Benn + Penna Architecture

Benn + Penna Architecture has renovated and extended a dilapidated terrace in Sydney's eastern suburbs, creating a new kitchen with a long counter that continues into a planted courtyard.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

New South Wales practice Benn + Penna Architecture was asked to transform the residence for a scientist, who wanted to improve the natural lighting of the existing dark rooms and form a better connection to the garden.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

The architects also wanted to make a subtle play on the long and thin houses that occupy the narrow plots of the Surry Hills suburb.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

"The brief was to transform a previously introverted and dilapidated terrace house into one that is spacious and full of light," the architects told Dezeen.

"The client requested seamless connections between kitchen, living and dining spaces, as well as to the garden space at the rear of the property."

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

By extending the rear of the residence, and removing the existing back wall on the ground floor, the architects created an open-plan kitchen and living room with glass doors that open to the courtyard.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

The long kitchen cabinet extends from the inside to the outdoor space, where it incorporates a barbecue. As it reaches the end of the courtyard, the counter's level drops and changes direction to create a bench that faces into the kitchen.

The wall behind the bench is covered white mosaic tiles to reflect northern light back into both the garden and kitchen.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

Light materials are used inside throughout the residence, including pale timber flooring and white-painted walls, to keep the spaces bright. These simple finishes are also intended to complement the brickwork of neighbouring residences.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

"The pared back and understated interior is designed to foreground the rich texture of Surry Hills brickwork surrounding the site," said the architects.

"Materials are used to strategically amplify the presence of light inside the house," they continued. "Pale timber is used to create a sense of lightness in the space."

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

A delicate, white steel staircase with wooden treads rises through the middle of the building. It is topped with a large skylight to bring natural light down into the centre of the house.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

On the floor above, the architects created a bathroom and master bedroom with folding glass doors that open to a private terrace overlooking the courtyard.

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture

Other recently transformed residences in Sydney include a contemporary concrete and glass extension by CO-AP and one by Nick Bell Design featuring a concertina rooflight.

Photography is by Tom Ferguson.


Project credits:

Architect: Benn + Penna Architects
Project team  Andrew Benn (principal) and Sean Tran (Architectural Assistant)
Builder: ADON Constructions

More images and plans

Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture
Ground floor plan
Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture
First floor plan
Surry Hills House by Benn + Penna Architecture
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