Hill House is located in Melbourne, Australia, where lots are narrow, requiring architects to think outside the box — and the team at Andrew Maynard Architects did just that. The owners of the home wished for a modern update that included reorienting the entryway and an outdoor space that actually got sunlight. The also needed the home to provide adequate space for their three growing children.

The house features a new, cantilevered structure over the hidden lower level, which happens to be behind the artificial hill. The family now has a sun-filled yard with the house built around it.

The idea behind the “hill” was due to the fact that Melbourne is mostly flat and without landscape. Now they have a cliff and a yard, although synthetic, to play on and one that doesn’t need to be mowed.

The box soaks up the sun in the winter but is also protected in the summer months.

Photos by Nic Granleese.