Mornington Peninsula Beach House
Strong yet sympathetic, Mornington Peninsula Beach House converts the historic Whitehall Hotel — an expansive, 40-room guesthouse built in 1904 — into a private, multi-generational beach house. Positioned on the edge of Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, the building’s civic proportions and Edwardian character inspired a series of restrained gestures that enhance intimacy and provide contemporary amenity for guests.
The building’s original hotel rooms are skilfully divided into four, self-contained apartments with guest bedrooms in between, while the ground floor offers a shared living space where multiple families can come together and connect. Given the building’s frontage holds a public presence, the rear garden and pool are designed as a private enclave, set against the lush bushlands of the adjacent national park.
Throughout, Whitehall’s original limestone structure with red-brick detailing is carefully restored in accordance with strict heritage controls. Confident incisions in black steel framing offer a dramatic inversion of space, with tailored views of the minimalist interior set against the hotel’s patinaed, 120-year-old building fabric.
Where possible, the building’s limestone walls are exposed internally, engraining the hotel’s storied past in the interior experience. New insertions, articulated in brushed aluminium and travertine, reinterpret Whitehall’s robustness with an abstract hand — an evolution of the building’s narrative, as long lasting as its original structure.