Koichi Takada architects builds 'norfolk' as an arrangement of overlapping undulating slabs

Koichi Takada Architects
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Located by the australian coastline in Burleigh Heads, ‘norfolk’ is the latest mixed-use residential project by Koichi Takada architects. Taking cues from local norfolk pines, the structure adopts a dynamic sculptural form, respecting the site’s architectural landscape that was left largely unaltered for almost three decades.

Representing a respectful yet regenerative development, the structure responds to passive design principles. Its undulating balcony slabs are strategically overlapped to provide shade to the outdoor spaces below. Inspired by the way the norfolk pinecone protects its seeds, sliding slatted screening offers privacy and protection from the weather conditions.


The 10-storey structure designed by the Sydney-based architecture firm Koichi Takada architects accommodates fifteen apartments and two dual-level penthouses with private rooftop pools. The ground level occupies wellbeing amenities, including a gym, outdoor pool, and sauna, while providing expansive views towards the coast and ocean.

The slabs of each level extend over the glazed balustrades making each floor stand out, and reflecting the surrounding natural landscape. Along with the slabs, curved horizontal battens that form a central spine, accentuate the organic expression of the design. Acting as a sun-shading element during summer, they allow for uninterrupted ocean views while maintaining privacy.


A focal point for the design was to capture panoramic views by using clean lines and natural materials. The apartment layouts maximize passive solar design and enhance beachside living; capitalizing on views, natural light, and open plan living. North facing apartments showcase 180-degree views of the coastline, while each apartment is arranged to benefit from cross ventilation and natural light.

Large rooftop terraces are the private domain of the two top-level apartments, offering dining and entertainment areas, private lap pools, and a lushly landscaped perimeter for each. The materiality is informed by the surrounding landscape, the hues and textures of the sand, water, trees, and sky. Natural timber floors through the apartments are connected visually with the external spaces and allow living spaces to spill out to generous balconies, blurring the definition between inside and out.

‘Norfolk’s adaptable architecture suits the changing climate and ever evolving coastal environment, by designing sliding timber screens we’ve heightened the natural softness of the form and provided greater flexibility for each apartment. The design interacts with nature and is very much about creating breathing space for an incomparable beachfront living experience.’ Koichi Takada.

Project info:

Name: Norfolk, Burleigh Heads

Designer: Koichi Takada Architects

Interior design: MIM Design

Clients: FORME

Location: Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast QLD, Australia

Status: complete

Site area: 1,012 sqm

GFA: 1,061 sqm

FSR: 594 sqm (59%)

Height: 31.45 m

No. of apartments: 15 range of apartment

Sizes: 217sqm – 343sqm

No. of floors: 10 above grounds and 2 below ground

Photography: Scott Burrows

Koichi Takada architects builds 'norfolk' as an arrangement of overlapping undulating slabs

serving as the central spine of the sculptural piece


views overlooking the ocean