There was a time when being at the end of the train line was a positive – it meant an escape from the rat race. In the halcyon days of the ‘40s and ‘50s, day-trippers and holidaymakers flocked to Frankston to soak up its beachy vibes. And the good news? They’re on their way back.

Project Name: Horizon Apartments
Studio Name: Elenberg Fraser
Melbourne, Australia
Photography: Third Aesthetic

©Third Aesthetic

What we’ve created here isn’t just reserved for Christmas break and Australia Day long weekend – at Horizon, residents get to live summer holidays all year round. To capture the endless summer, living spaces need to reflect a coastal ethos. And that calls for biophilic design.

Fluid geometry and a playful approach to the built environment reflect the building’s setting and reinforce the reason people choose to live here. The horizontal planes of the building extend beyond its core, echoing the long and undulating lines of the nearby beach, boardwalk and pier, and riffing off the sharply delineated horizon line that defines the sparkling bay.

Here, it’s like living amongst the dunes. Sweeping balconies are heavily landscaped with native coastal vegetation. And warm yet expansive interiors are kitted out with natural materials and flooded with light and air, recalling the very best bits of a seaside holiday minus the midges and sand in the shagpile.

©Third Aesthetic

The best home in Frankston also comes with the best views in town. We’ve pinched the sides of the building inwards, to make sure all the apartments, including those at the rear of the property, have expansive views of Port Phillip Bay. Because what’s the point of a beachside home without a sea-view?

Best of all, if the plan is to ‘downsize’, here it doesn’t mean compromising… on anything. For a start, as nice as it is to pretend to be on permanent vacation, sometimes work is a necessary evil. So the building includes shared executive facilities that residents can book when the real world intrudes on their idyllic way of life.

And why waste space on a garage? Horizon comes with its own man-cave in the basement, complete with a workshop and any carefully curated wine collection is safe in a climate-controlled cellar.

On the rooftop, studios can be booked for yoga or pilates classes. With plunge pools and hot tubs on the roof overlooking the bay, and BBQs and a rooftop dining room for hosting parties with a panoramic view of the Melbourne skyline, why would anyone want to leave?

Horizon recalls the time when Hollywood stars Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, and Fred Astaire strolled the foreshore in 1959 as they filmed On the Beach. Then, as now, this stretch of the Mornington Peninsula was the place to be.


Rethinking The Future (RTF) is a Global Platform for Architecture and Design. RTF through more than 100 countries around the world provides an interactive platform of highest standard acknowledging the projects among creative and influential industry professionals.