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House at Wynberg
Wynberg, Western Cape

Brian George Lewis MANSERGH: Architect


Cumming-George 1934

THERE is restfulness and beauty in this house which lies on the higher slopes of Wynberg. It is not a large house if one counts the number of rooms, but it has been laid out in a spacious and dignified manner.

It consists of the main building fronting an entrance courtyard, with garage and servants' quarters at right angles to the main building.

Its lounge, the ceiling to which goes up to the second storey, dining-room and study, together with commodious kitchen quarters, comprise the ground floor, in addition to which wide arcaded loggia and stoep are carried round two sides adjoining the living rooms.

On the upper floor there is a private suite, composed of the main bedroom and bathroom attached, but removed from the main corridor by an arched entrance up three steps. Other bedrooms are in the corridor beyond with extra bathroom adjoining.

Fireplaces are quite a feature of this house, several having been designed for electric fires which are raised to the new level above the floor, and protected by decorative grilles of wrought iron or brass.

The fireplace in the lounge follows the traditional style of the room, which is distinctly Tudor with a touch of the quaint irregularities of Elizabethan days.

Concealed lighting has also been used with beautiful effects in various parts of the house, particularly in the beamed ingle of the lounge. The lighting is concealed at the back of the beam, and lighted, forms a most attractive and useful feature in the ingle's equipment.

The beauty of fine massive doors and good woodwork throughout makes this house a fine example of the best of domestic architecture, particularly so in the lounge where the two woods, teak and selected Oregon, have been combined in an attractive manner.

Apart from the brick plinth and the solid chimney stacks, exposed brick is used only at the entrance, the walls being finished in cream plaster with occasional touches of wrought iron. On the garden elevation, the arcaded loggias are the main feature, though the small oriel bays on the upper floor form an attractive part of the whole.

The sharp gables of the cedar shingled roof with timber filling the gables above the bays, and the dark outlining of loggia beams, give a rich quality to the cream walls which, presently, will have all the colour and sweetness of a well-laid-out garden as a setting.

All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

Books that reference House at Wynberg

Cumming-George, L. 1934. Architecture in South Africa - Volume Two. Cape Town: The Speciality Press of S.A. Ltd.. pg 82-83