Stamp House a $15 million surprise
A STAMP collector who wanted a new home in the rainforest asked his architect to surprise him.

It led to an award-winning architectural masterpiece
unlike any other in Australia.

Nicknamed “The Stamp House” or “Alkira”, the Cape
Tribulation property took five years to build and is now for sale for $15
million. “The design is wholly the concept of the architect, Charles Wright,’’
property owner Rod Perry said. “Our brief was unchallenging: there must be
water in abundance, the house should not blow away in the first cyclone, beyond
that surprise us. “Our
expectations were not let down.”

After being presented with the futurist concrete design,
which featured the six-bedroom house suspended over a lake, a helipad and
open-air cinema, the concept needed to be given the nod by engineers. “Among
the build challenges, the swimming pool representing a stylised interpret­ation
of the head and shoulders of a famous Aborigine (nicknamed “One Pound Jimmy”)
featured on two 1950s Australian stamps, is an engineering marvel. “There are
three levels of synchronisation of formwork: surround to pool moat, pool wall,
and corresponding overhead roofline.”

The sturdy structure, which is able to withstand a
category five cyclone, has recently been marketed in Asia in a bid to nab a
cashed-up buyer. “The Asian market is a logical target for a unique
architectural statement in a World Heritage location, subject to FIRB
approval,’’ Mr Perry said. “Aside from family occupation, the house and
rainforest surrounds form an inspirational backdrop for corporate adaptation,
such as for executive bonding and associated think-tank applications.”

Mr Perry and his partner live in the house and will stay
in the Wet Tropics area when the house is sold. “Probably in more modest
accommodation,’’ Mr Perry said. “We particularly enjoy the year-round breezes
courtesy of mountain, sea and lake in proximity. “The reflection of sun off the
lake shimmering on the geometric ceiling shapes as the day progresses is a
constant source of delight.” Mr Perry has been a professional stamp collector
and trader since 1962