Great Ocean Road retreat named Australian Home of the Year

June 7, 2024 BY

Horizon's low-maintenance exterior, comprising concrete, Corten cladding, COLORBOND and Alucobond, was chosen to withstand the harshness of its coastal setting. Photos: SUPPLIED

A luxury holiday home on the Great Ocean Road has been named this year’s Australian Home of the Year.

The Separation Creek property, designed by Crosier Scott Architects’ Alan Cubbon and constructed by BCM Homes, was officially crowned last month by the Housing Industry Association (HIA), where it also secured the title of the country’s best Custom Built Home and the People’s Choice Home of the Year.

Built over a period of 18 months, Horizon was completed in September 2022.


Named “Horizon” for its unbroken panoramic views, the home was built for BCM Homes’ director David Moyle and his family.

“I’m just so proud and humbled really to bring that award back to regional Victoria,” Moyle said.

Situated on an steep slope, the construction crew had to overcame extreme difficulties to complete the home.


“To receive an award at that national level is just so exciting and it’s also so pleasing to receive the recognition for a job well done and some really hard work.

“It was a complete team effort and we’re absolutely so proud of everybody involved and the whole team that worked on it.”

The timber grain alignment on the kitchen cabinetry, the detailing on the solid timber feature panels, and the multiple uses of in-situ concrete are just some of the home’s features that impressed the HIA judging panel.


The win marks the latest in a series of accolades for BCM Homes for their work on Horizon, after the company was last year crowned Master Builders Victoria’s Regional Builder of the Year, and the home was named HIA Victorian Home of the Year.

Suspended on the water’s edge on a steep slope and moulded to the landscape, Horizon was designed to balance aesthetics with the home’s surrounding environment and celebrate the site’s Surf Coast views.

Floor-to-ceiling glass panels, placed with millimetre-perfect precision, connect the interiors to the breathtaking ocean views beyond.


“We always wanted to have a holiday home in the Separation Creek/Wye River area because we just love that part of the world,” Moyle said.

“It’s a very, very charming and beautiful place for children and there’s a lot of very family-orientated people down there.”

Burnished concrete floors, solid timber and high-end finishes feature throughout the home, while outside, its low-maintenance exterior has been chosen to withstand its harsh coastal setting.

Concrete finishes feature extensively throughout the home.


It was the home’s meticulous detail and execution that most impressed the HIA judging panel, who felt an “uncompromising focus on quality” was evident in every aspect of the property, “down to the smallest of details”.

“All trades have gone above and beyond,” the judges stated.

Moyle spent three years planning the site’s build before breaking ground in February 2021, persevering over an 18-month period through significant challenges that included COVID restrictions and compliance with a Bushfire Attack Level 40 rating following the bushfires of 2015 that destroyed more than 100 homes across the Wye River area.

“From a construction point of view, it’s residentially as complicated as you could make a build,” he said.

“Firstly, there was the geographical location. Given that it was on the Surf Coast in Separation Creek, it’s not like you can just duck around the corner to Bunnings and get something you need.

“There had to be a lot of pre-planning and logical management to make sure we had everything when we

needed it.”

The 13-metre drop from the top of the building site to the bottom made for a technically complex build for the construction team.


The sheer slope of the block and its limited access also posed several challenges for the team.

It took four months of ground work, and the removal of approximately 1,700 cubic metres of soil from the site before the crew could begin bringing in the foundation work and the more than 1,000 tonnes of concrete used throughout the project.

“There’s 30 metres of fall across the site and 15 metres of that falls across the building envelope…so trying to support, and have formwork to support, those huge concrete pours that were up to 300 tonnes per pour, was very difficult on that slope,” Moyle said.

Horizon also features approximately 170sqm of glass, enabling unbroken ocean views from the home’s living room, which had to be craned into place with millimetre perfection.

“The internal finishes are the same sort of complexities in the way we went around it so there wasn’t really an aspect of the project that was easy. We chose every difficult way to do something,” Moyle said.

“That’s rewarding in itself. The finished product is really of the highest quality you could expect and it’s really pleasing just to see those results at such a remote and complex site.”

HIA managing director Jocelyn Martin said the HIA awards, which recognise exceptional projects and businesses from across the country, were about “giving credit where it’s due”.

“HIA Awards are our way of recognising the exceptional talent within our membership.

“We are talking about members who not only build extraordinary homes, kitchens and bathrooms, but also run incredibly successful businesses.

“The craftsmanship displayed by our award winners is simply outstanding. Their projects often redefine what’s possible in terms of design and innovation, setting new standards for the industry.”

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