A professional resource for the design curious

Get the latest design news direct to your inbox!

Hear from State of Craft’s Daniel Goldberg on Sydney’s most exclusive address

Designed by Kerry Hill Architects and State Of Craft (interiors), One Circular Quay is just about Sydney’s most premium address. We spoke to Daniel Goldberg about the design.

Hear from State of Craft’s Daniel Goldberg on Sydney’s most exclusive address

Still to be completed but with a showroom next to the site and apartments available, One Circular Quay is very much in the top tier of luxury Sydney residences – perhaps even the city’s most exclusive. This project by Lendlease is designed by Kerry Hill Architects (architecture) and UK-based State of Craft (interiors), and we spoke to the latter’s Daniel Goldberg about the design.

How does the design engage with the harbour – visually, aesthetically, materially, culturally?

Daniel Goldberg: One Circular Quay offered us an opportunity to create interiors that are developed in response to the site’s specific history and context. We conceived the interiors as a dialogue with the architecture, cityscape and natural aspects. At the beginning of our design process, the question was: What makes Circular Quay unique? What is the spirit of this place?

One Circular Quay is more than a physical place and prestigious address. It is part of a story of contrasts and cultures, dreams and departures, adventures and arrivals. The transformation of this natural cove into a busy, inner-city port has added to the sense that Circular Quay is a historic gateway to an entire continent – a welcoming ‘front door’ to a world city. Today, the skyline of the city acts as the backdrop to the dynamic life in and around the cove. The unique location and orientation offers a front row seats to that ‘stage’ with its rhythm, flow and energy of a young and vibrant metropolis.

We envisaged the homes as private ‘box seats’: sheltered spaces that allow for comfortable observation of the ever-changing light, and the constant motion of the un-choreographed performance of ferries, ocean liners, tugboats and racing yachts darting across the cove. Our interiors aimed to capture, absorb and distil the magic and wonder of this special place.

How important are the visual connections to the bridge and Opera House?

Daniel Goldberg: The Circular Quay cove is framed to the east by the Opera House and to the west by the Harbour Bridge – two of the world’s most iconic structures. We optimised the spatial arrangements of each apartment to maximise the views through the facade onto these important landmarks. In some instances, we created an enfilade, an axis that strings together the master bedroom, walk-in wardrobe and master wardrobe in order to bring light and views deep into the floor plate. This in turn allowed for a mirror wall in the master bathroom to be oriented so that the Harbour Bridge is reflected and part of the experience throughout the entire master suite. From the overall spatial organisation to the consideration of small details, we extensively studied view lines in 2D and 3D throughout the design process.

How important are views and natural light?

Daniel Goldberg: The effortless connection to the outside, dissolving the barrier between the home and the cityscape, is in the DNA of this project. The architect Kerry Hill designed the building to be fully glazed with winter gardens that act as transitional spaces, allowing the apartments to open up to the external environment as required. This sense of being in touch with the outside, hearing the sounds of the city or feeling the harbour breeze, has informed all aspects of our design for the interiors. Consequently, we designed three finishes palettes with each relating to a particular aspect of the view – the changing light in the sky, the reflective water surface of the harbour and the lush vegetation of the hills surrounding the cove.

Related: Renzo Piano and State of Craft on Sydney Harbour

How did you go about selecting materials for the interiors?

Daniel Goldberg: We matched finishes to the characteristics of each palette: The sky palette (Aero) is about light tones and subtle textures that provide a calm canvas for the colours of the sky. In contrast, the water palette (Aqua), is about dark tones, polished surfaces and tonal contrast, thereby bringing some of the qualities of the shimmering harbour basin at night into the apartments. The third palette (Terra) is capturing the earthy and green tones of the nearby botanical garden and natural setting of the harbour.

In that spirit, we sourced finishes that would best suit the client brief and fit our vision for the three interior schemes. Where possible, we sourced local finishes, using Australian timber species such as Australian Spotted Gum, and we are working with local craftsmen. However, most stone finishes for kitchens and bathrooms were selected from quarries in Portugal, Italy, Greece and Brazil. In collaboration with our client LendLease, our design studio selects and inspects each block and slab of stone at either the quarry or stone yard. This level of quality control is essential for our interiors which are about using natural materials generously and expressing their inherent qualities and beauty.

Who are you designing for? Who is the client/resident that you have in mind and how do you design for their needs?

Daniel Goldberg: What comes with a project of this nature is that you need to design for a very diverse range of backgrounds, lifestyles and requirements – from families and couples looking for a permanent home in Sydney, to residents who will use the apartment as a pied-a-terre or second home. Whatever the individual requirements might be, there is a shared expectation for One Circular Quay to set a new benchmark with regard to quality in design, construction and interior elements including state of the art appliances. For State of Craft, the challenge was to create truly comfortable, generous and effortless spaces that all purchasers will be proud to call home. Each apartment is complete enough to move right in but we have also left enough ‘room’ for residents to make it their own.

One Circular Quay

State Of Craft

Courtesy of State of Craft (artist impressions and subject to change)

We think you might also like this article featuring six wintergardens that bring greenery indoors.

INDESIGN is on instagram

Follow @indesignlive

The Indesign Collection

A searchable and comprehensive guide for specifying leading products and their suppliers

Indesign Our Partners

Keep up to date with the latest and greatest from our industry BFF's!

Related Stories

While you were sleeping

The internet never sleeps! Here's the stuff you might have missed