views of the house

Cliff House by Fearon Hay Architects

Fearon Hay Architects blurred the lines between the inside and the outside in their project: Cliff House. The degree of exposure to the outside environment seems to redefine the notion of privacy, while its location reinforces it. The two-storey glass house maximizes the views, creating a captivating atmosphere.

The atmosphere and impact of this contemporary house molds on a description, written by Mark Twain, of a similar location. “Out along the rail road track… architecture begins to put off its swaddling clothes, and assume form and style, grace and beauty… Then there’s the Cliff House, perched on the very brink of the ocean, like a castle by the Rhine…”. Here, ” the ocean air… swells the lungs and strengthens the limbs”, and the “ocean’s presence wins you into a happy frame”- A trip to the Cliff House- Mark Twain, published in The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, in June 25, 1964.

If you want to learn more about Fearon Hay Architects’ project, check out the facts below. Let the Cliff House seduce you with its architecture and enjoy the stunning ocean view!

Fearon Hay Architects 

made of glass walls

views of the house

Fearon Hay Architects is a partnership between Jeff Fearon and Tim Hay. The firm was founded in 1998, and based in Auckland, New Zealand.

Cliff House by Fearon Hay Architects 

living room walls

The Cliff House is conceptualized with consideration and sensibility for its surrounding environment. Its design is meant to maximize the view over Rangitoto and the Hauraki Gulf, while “providing shelter from the prevailing weather”.

Minimalist design

Minimalist design

The house is a composition of horizontal and vertical planes, paired with clear lines. Cliff House is mainly defined by the massiveness of the ceiling plan. 

The shell of Cliff House


An outside shell made of metal piles and glass gives Cliff House a light appearance. The lightweight effect reduces its impact and dominance of its surroundings.

A strong relation between interior and exterior 

interior has an open layout

The limits of the living room are defined by a change in floor materiality. On the vertical planes, separation between interior and exterior is suggested with the medium of the metal piles. The degree of openness creates a strong relationship between the two environments.

 Maximizing the views 

outdoor dining room

According to Elle Decoration UK, “…the landscape is ever present” in the projects of Fearon Hay Architects. Even when the degree of openness decreases, the user still gets to experience its surroundings and enjoy the view.

The layout of Cliff House 

clean kitchen

There are no psychical elements that will indicate the exact limits of a certain area. Limits and circulation are instinctively defined.

Minimalist bedroom 

 Minimalist bedroom

The bedroom is defined by a minimalist decor, dominated by a neural color palette. A collection of white sculptural furniture catches the attention of the eye.

Redefining the bath experience  

modern bathroom


The bathroom opens up on three planes, taking full advantage of its beautiful surroundings. It creates a stunning atmosphere, allowing the user to experiment a sensation of freedom.

If you want to learn more about the work of Fearon Hay Architects, check out their website. Also, show some love to the photographer, Patrick Reynolds.

Currently studying architecture, I'm enamored of all visual arts. My path in architecture started with drawing. The childish play soon developed into a passion and then into a choice of profession. Architecture taught me a lot of things that can be applied in interior design. I'll share with you my perception of space along with tips on how to manipulate it to suit your needs. Enjoy!

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