From the back of this house in suburban Melbourne, Australia, you’d never guess it was a Victorian. Robson Rak Architects upgraded the Malvern home and added a new living space off the courtyard. The clients requested that the new spaces fuse seamlessly with the remodeled old part of the house.

“We demolished the original 1980s addition, previously elevated one meter above the back yard,” the architects said. “We relocated this change of level to the end of the hallway and carried the original ceiling height through to a new addition, which consists of living space, kitchen, pantry and laundry.”

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The highlight of the new living room is a tall brick fireplace, a visual link to the house’s brick facade. Double-glazed doors and windows ensure plenty of natural light.

“Although the house uses fully automated technology, it is disguised by a warm, textural palette,” the architects said. “A timber ribbon of floor and wall travels through the house, creating a harmonious, seamless transition from old to new.” [Information provided by Robson Rak; photography by Lisa Cohen and Mark Roper]

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