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Sandy Bay


Architect’s former New Zealand holiday residence.


Urbis #67 PLAYFUL DESIGN March 2012
Way Back When.
Sandy Bay House
“Neville Price is better known for his commercial works like the West Plaza and Manukau City Council building, but his 1970’s holiday home is an unusual while memorable moment in New Zealand’s architectural history as Nicole Stock explains.

…a circular, curly-turreted house on this point at the far end of Sandy Bay – that we found out was a house and, beyond that, the work of celebrated architect Neville Price.

Designed in 1974 for himself and a friend and their families, Price was also involved in the building of it, carting concrete and nailing studs over two summers to build it. Because two families used it, and not always at different times, the house was designed to ensure privacy through separate occupancies within the single structure and this influenced the radial structure of the home. Structural walls spiral out from a central stair at the core (which twists up to the top and becomes the iconic coil of the roof form). The living spaces fit in between these ribs – a low single story to the south and then, as the roof steps upwards as it arcs around, two stories at the north. With the stair core in brick, and the dominant roof in brown tile, this house is markedly ’70s, but its form is so unique it stands out as a moment of architectural whimsy (in all the best senses of the word) for this decade”