Bellbird Retreat

Killarney, Queensland

This weekender halfway up a mountain is a delightful retreat that provides an opportunity to escape and unwind from city life. The building has a robustness suited to the rocky bushfire prone site but a delightful rationale that integrates well with its environment and encourages an appreciation of the setting.

Upon entry the fortress-like exterior opens to a light filled interior that is compact but highly resolved and comfortable. There is an ease of transition from inside to out which develops an intimacy with the setting and extends the usable living area.

The architect has sensitively considered natural light and the views from windows emphasise key elements within the landscape such as the setting sun on distant escarpments.

Some may regard this building as simple because of its size and location. Instead it is a highly considered and well resolved dwelling that has improved the lives of its owners and their guests. This building is a true piece of architecture, and one that is at the highest level.


  • 2019 Architecture Masterprize - international winner, Good Design Award
  • 2019 Winner Commercial and Residential, WAN Awards
  • 2019 International winner small spaces, Australian Institute of Architects State Awards
  • 2019 Queensland - Winner Robin Dods Awards (residential architecture) + William Hodge Award (building of the year) + State Award Sustainable Architecture + Colorbond Award Steel Architecture, Brisbane Design Awards
  • 2019 Winner silver, Think Brick Awards - High Commendation
  • 2019 Dezeen Awards - Nomination