Beach shack revival

Issue 27 Words: Emma Scragg
North Stradbroke Island, QLD
  • Lightweight building materials were selected to reduce transport costs to the island and to complement the fishing shack aesthetic of the original house.
  • All building and fit out materials were chosen carefully with simplicity and long-term maintenance in mind.
  • A lockable gate is effectively the front door. It is positioned so householders can enjoy the views, but also to maximise northern orientation for the new rooms.
  • Timbin Timbin beach shack is nestled on the protective ridge of Point Lookout on North Stradbroke Island.

Nestled below the protective ridge of Point Lookout on North Stradbroke Island sits this sustainable beach house and its recent lightweight extension.

Owned by the same family since 1948, Timbin Timbin’s original compact fibro shack was due for repairs and needed more space to accommodate its owners’ now large extended family.

Timbin Timbin (meaning great north wind) sits on a steep sand slope, facing east-northeast out to a stunning view of the sea and passing humpback whales. The new wing has been oriented to maximise winter sun and provide protection from strong winds and afternoon sun. Pandanus and cotton trees partly shade the house from its exposure to intense morning sun.

The old house and new kitchen, living and sleeping wing are linked by a deep roofed terrace which was originally intended to be an enclosed living room. However budgetary constraints meant the planned glazed doors were removed, leaving it as a sheltered outdoor room. It’s now a favourite space where the family comes together.

Timbin Timbin’s owners initially approached architect Jeremy Salmon with a desire for more space without overwhelming the 60 square metres of the original shack they loved. They were also wary of the high costs of delivering materials to the island by vehicle ferry and maintaining their holiday home in a harsh marine environment.

Keeping the overall footprint compact to fit the existing levelled terrace not only meant no removal of vegetation and very little movement of sand, but is also in keeping with Jeremy’s approach to beach shacks. Having stayed at his own family’s tiny Point Lookout beach house all his life, he’s observed that we’re all very lazy. “If there’s somewhere good to sit close to the kitchen, you tend to not always go outside more. If you make something small, you force people to go outside.” By providing appealing spaces beyond the walls of the house, the family is encouraged to enjoy the natural environment, the beauty of “Straddie”.

Timbin Timbin is a great example of a sustainable beach house renovation that is site sensitive, economically and socially sustainable and one that stays true to the simplicity of the traditional beach shack aesthetic.

ShareShare on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter
Cover of Issue 27
You can read more about Beach shack revival in Issue 27 of Sanctuary magazine.

Buy it now at our webshop!

Sanctuary: modern green homes is Australia’s premier magazine dedicated to sustainable home design. More...

Subscribe to our newsletter



Jeremy Salmon


Whitekey Constructions

Project type

Alteration & Addition

Project location

North Stradbroke Island, QLD




Land 582 sqm, existing house 60 sqm, additions 60 sqm + deck

View houses by state